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Kiki Smith

Red Moons


Kiki Smith
Born in Nuremberg in 1954


Red Moons




Glass, acrylic, Plexiglas


226 x 732 x 4.5 cm


Purchase, Horsley and Annie Townsend Bequest, inv. 1999.2.1-170


International Contemporary Art

Kiki Smith was born into a family of artists – her father is painter, sculptor and architect Tony Smith, and her mother is singer-actress Jane Smith. Kiki Smith began her career as a member of Collaborative Projects, Inc. (Colab), a collective of socially engaged American artists, and first came to prominence through exhibitions held mainly at The Kitchen and P.S.1 in New York. Her ability to breathe new life into traditional art forms via an original and striking vision of the human body and femininity, together with a sensibility highly attentive to materials, eventually made her in the early 1990s one of the most important American artists of her generation.

Executed in 1998, two years after she abandoned the direct representation of the body in order to explore its cosmological metaphors and resonances, Red Moons is the third and most impressive of the pieces the artist devoted to the theme of the moon. Combining the classic monumentality of the triptych and the fragility of glass, Kiki Smith celebrates the fluid nuptials of the cosmos and the body; these blood moons symbolize the imaginary and immemorial alliance that connects the female body with the order of the cosmos.

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