Kiki Smith's Dowry Book

Kiki Smith's Dowry Book and slipcase
Adoption Amount: $250
Category: Build and Access the Collection
Location: Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden Library

Kiki Smith's Dowry book

By Kiki Smith. London: Anthony d'Offay, c1997.

Kiki Smith’s Dowry Book is an intimate, palm-sized collection of images, each representing an exhibition Smith had between 1982 and 1995, a time when she was particularly focused on issues of AIDS, gender, and race. The Hirshhorn Library’s copy is from a limited edition of 800 signed copies, issued in a plain, cardboard slipcase, and designed by Smith on a computer. The illustrated cloth boards reproduce Smith’s Dowry Cloth, 1990, made of women’s hair and sheep’s wool felted together. Smith explains, “The work came from thinking about dowries … people around the world making objects for their daily life and by the evidence of the love and care taken to make those objects and how that relates to the practice of making art.” Kiki Smith is one of the most applauded figures of second wave Feminist art, and a prolific artist whose output includes representational and figurative art in the media of painting, sculpture, prints, and books.

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