Serendipity and Faith:
A Conversation with Nari Ward
by Jan Garden Castro
Nari Ward’s monumental works merge mystery and meaning. His 2012 exhibition at Lehmann Maupin’s Chrystie Street gallery consisted of beautiful objects with double and triple meanings. Why would shoelaces embedded in a gallery wall spell out “We the People?” Why was a fox with an Afro-tail standing at the base of a police observation tower? Did the infrared light beam signal a gun targeting its prey or a policeman saving a victim?
Since earning his MFA at Brooklyn College in 1992, Ward has exhibited at numerous museums and galleries, including the Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia; Galleria Continua in San Gimignano, Italy; the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis; and Deitch Projects in New York. Last year, his mega-exhibition at Mass MoCA connected displaced workers in North Adams with their counterparts in his native Jamaica. Amazing Grace (1993), an iconic work originally created in an abandoned fire station in Harlem, was reinstalled in the New Museum’s Studio 231 space earlier this year. ...see the entire article in the print version of June's Sculpture magazine.
Installation view of “Nari Ward: Liberty and Orders,” Lehmann Maupin Gallery, 2012.