Sable Elyse Smith Biography
Through text, video, photography, sculpture, and other interrelated practices, Sable Elyse Smith examines the double consciousness of human experience within dehumanizing systems. Personal narratives and broader implications of the prison industrial complex and panopticon state are sampled, layered, transmuted, and recited, within highly charged spaces of deep chaos and unnerving order.
Smith was born in 1986 in Los Angeles. She earned a B.A. in Studio Art and Film from Oglethorpe University and an M.F.A. in Design & Technology from Parsons. Her debut solo exhibition, Blue is Ubiquitous and Forbidden, was held at SOHO20 Gallery in Brooklyn in 2015. A poet as well as a visual artist whose process often begins with writing, she has given several performances and readings, including Performing Fictions (2018) at the Studio Museum in Harlem and Mirror/Echo/Tilt (2015) at the Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture. Her curatorial projects include C.R.E.A.M. (2019), a multidisciplinary event inspired by the Wu-Tang Clan song of the same name. Smith lives and works in Richmond, Virginia and New York and serves as Assistant Professor of Visual Arts and Concentration Head of Expanded Practice/Sculpture at Columbia University. She is represented by JTT in New York, where she mounted a solo show, BOLO: Be on (the) lookout in 2018. She will be participating in the Whitney Biennial 2022, the museum having acquired some of her work in 2018.
Smith’s work has been accessioned into the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the ICA Miami, and the Haggerty Museum of Art in Milwaukee, among numerous other public institutions.