Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, 1993

Genesis
oil, collage, mixed media on canvas
152.4 x 254 cm
High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia, Purchase through funds provided by AT&T NEW ART/NEW VISIONS with funds from Alfred Austell Thornton in memory of Leila Austell Thornton and Albert Edward Thornton, Sr., and Sarah Miller Venable and William Hoyt Venable, 1995.54. Courtesy
Steinbaum Krauss Gallery
© 1993 Jaune Quick-to-See Smith


Like most of Smith's recent work, Genesis and Trade (gifts for trading land with white people) consist of layers of newspaper articles, fabric swatches, and photocopied illustrations, all unified by expressive, gestural painting. When Smith executes a painting, the passage of time is marked by the drips of paint that run down the canvas. Collage elements and paint conceal underlayers of narrative and landscape. The intuitive buildup of these painterly surfaces helps us to reflect upon the spiritual and life-affirming constancy of the land. Like the earth itself, with its layers of geological time, its civilizations built upon civilizations, the paintings evoke, and are symbolic of, the rhythms of nature's continuum.