Teresita Fernández: Elemental is the first major traveling exhibition and the first mid-career survey of works by contemporary artist Teresita Fernández, considered one of the most innovative artists of her generation.
Co-organized with Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), the retrospective showcases more than 50 large-scale sculptures, installations, and mixed-media wall works created by Fernández over two decades, offering Arizona audiences the opportunity to experience her evocative creations that reinterpret the relationships between nature, history, and identity.
Teresita Fernández (originally from Miami, FL; lives and works in Brooklyn, NY) is a conceptual artist best known for her monumental public projects that expand on notions of landscape and place. Her work, often inspired by natural phenomena—meteor showers, fire, and the night sky—invites experiential engagement with the work and the space it occupies. Fernández places particular importance on her choice of materials such as gold, graphite, and other minerals that have loaded histories, often tied to colonialism, history, land, and power. Her work is characterized by a quiet unraveling of place, visibility, and erasure that prompts an intimate experience for individual viewers. In 2015, Fernández installed her largest public art project to date, Fata Morgana, in New York’s Madison Square Park. The work was composed of overhead, mirrored canopies above all of the park’s walkways, and its title refers to mirages that hover right above the horizon.
Fernández is a 2005 MacArthur Foundation Fellow and the recipient of a number of rewards including the Aspen Award for Art in 2013, the 2003 Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Louis Comfort Tiffany Biennial Award in 1999. Appointed by President Obama, she was the first Latina to serve on the US Commission of Fine Arts, a 100-year-old federal panel that advises the president and Congress on national matters of design and aesthetics.
Fernández’s recent site-specific commissions include Vînales (Mayombe Mississippi), New Orleans Museum of Art, Sculpture Garden, New Orleans, LA (2019); Island Universe, Ford Foundation, New York, NY (2019); Autumn (…Nothing Personal), Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (2018); Stacked Waters, Blanton Museum of Art, University of Texas, Austin, TX (2009); Blind Blue Landscape, Benesse Art Site, Naoshima, Japan (2009); and Seattle Cloud Cover, Olympic Sculpture Park, Seattle, WA (2006).
Teresita Fernández: Elemental is co-organized by Phoenix Art Museum and Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), and curated by Amada Cruz, former Sybil Harrington Director and CEO of Phoenix Art Museum; Franklin Sirmans, Director of Pérez Art Museum Miami; Gilbert Vicario, Deputy Director for Curatorial Affairs and the Selig Family Chief Curator of Phoenix Art Museum; and María Elena Ortiz, Assistant Curator of Pérez Art Museum Miami. The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated, bilingual publication featuring scholarly texts written by the exhibition curators and additional contributors. The publication is designed by McGinty, Inc. and co-published with DelMonico Prestel Books.
Its premiere at Phoenix Art Museum is made possible through the generosity of the Ford Foundation, with additional support provided by The Diane & Bruce Halle Foundation, Virginia G. Piper Charitable Trust Exhibition Endowment Fund, Meredith and Charles von Arentschildt, National Endowment for the Arts, and Lee and Mike Cohn..
Free for Members, veterans and active-duty Military, and youth aged 5 and under.
This exhibition is open to the general public during voluntary-donation, Pay-What-You-Wish hours from 3–9 pm each Wednesday, from 6–10 pm on the first Friday of each month, and is free for youth ages 17 and under from 10 am–5 pm on the last Saturday of each month during Creative Saturdays: Free Under 18.
Interested in coming as a group? For group sales information, click here.
Teresita Fernández, Night Writing (Hero and Leander), 2011. Colored and shaped paper pulp with inkjet assembled with mirror. Edition of 1 with AP 1/1. Courtesy of the artist; Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong and Seoul; and Singapore Tyler Print Institute.
Teresita Fernández, Fire (United States of the Americas), 2017. Charcoal 57 parts. Photo: Matthew Herrmann. Courtesy the artist and Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong and Seoul.
Teresita Fernández, Borrowed Landscape (Citron), 1998. Wood, fabric, oculus light, graphite, and paint. Collection of the artist. Courtesy Lehmann Maupin, New York, Hong Kong and Seoul.
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