A Legacy Made Visible with Matilda McQuaid, Nancy Princenthal and Patterson Sims

February 3, 2018
12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

Three accomplished scholars offer their perspectives on the experimental and innovative work produced at FWM in collaboration with such notable artists as Louise Bourgeois, Chris Burden, Glenn Ligon, Richard Tuttle and Carrie Mae Weems among others. In their presentations, McQuaid, Princenthal and Sims will investigate how major contemporary artists used FWM’s special resources and textile processes to broaden conversations about materiality in postmodern and twenty-first century art. They will trace the medium of textile from its place in the history of craft to its relevance in contemporary art. They will also explore the ways these artists employed the opportunity to collaborate with FWM studio staff, take risks and expand their existing oeuvre.

Event Information

February 3, 2018
12:00 pm to 2:00 pm

About the Participants

Matilda McQuaid is Deputy Curatorial Director and Head of Textiles at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, New York. McQuaid oversees one of the premier textile collections in the world which includes more than 26,000 textiles produced over 2,000 years. She has organized nationally and internationally acclaimed architecture and design exhibitions with accompanying publications including Josef + Anni Albers: Designs for Living (2004), Extreme Textiles: Designing for High Performance (2005), Color Moves: Art and Fashion by Sonia Delaunay (2011), Tools: Extending Our Reach (2014) and Scraps: Fashion, Textiles, and Creative Reuse (2016). Between 2014 and 2016, she led a major collection digitization project at the Museum with more than 200,000 objects photographed and available online. Formerly at the Museum of Modern Art, New York for fifteen years, McQuaid curated over thirty exhibitions; she is also an accomplished author and editor on art, architecture and design, with many books, exhibition catalogues and articles to her credit.

Nancy Princenthal is a Brooklyn-based writer whose book Agnes Martin: Her Life and Art (Thames and Hudson, 2015) received the 2016 PEN America award for biography. A former Senior Editor of Art in America, where she remains a Contributing Editor, she has also written for The New York Times, Artforum and the Village Voice. Princenthal is the author of Hannah Wilke (Prestel, 2010) and a co-author of two recent books on women artists. Her essays have appeared in monographs on Alfredo Jaar, Robert Mangold, Shirin Neshat and Doris Salcedo among many others. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (B.A.), Hunter College (M.A.) and the Whitney Independent Study program, Princenthal has taught at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College; Princeton University; and Yale University, and is currently on the faculty of the School of Visual Arts.

Patterson Sims has worked in the arts since 1969, and was the Director of the Montclair Art Museum in New Jersey from 2001-2009. His distinguished career as a museum professional includes serving as Deputy Director for Education and Research Support at the Museum of Modern Art, in New York. Prior to this, he was Associate Director for Art and Exhibitions and Curator of Modern Art at the Seattle Art Museum between 1987 and 1996, and was the first curator designated to oversee the permanent collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art, where he worked from 1976 to 1987. He began his career as Assistant Director of O.K. Harris Works of Art, in the then newly-developing arts district of Soho, in 1969. Sims has organized one-artist exhibitions of numerous artists including Ellsworth Kelly, John Storrs, Jan Matulka, Viola Frey, Fred Wilson, Claire Zeisler, Willie Cole, and Hedda Sterne. He was a co-curator of four Whitney Biennial exhibitions. Sims is the former President and current Co-chair of the Board of Trustees of Independent Curators International (ICI).


Major support for Process and Practice: 40 Years of Experimentation is provided by the Coby Foundation, Ltd., with additional support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Joy of Giving Something, Inc., the Lenore G. Tawney Foundation, the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation and the Center for Architecture and Design which supported programming for this exhibition.

Major support of FWM is provided by the Marion Boulton “Kippy” Stroud Foundation. FWM receives state arts funding support through a grant from the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, a state agency funded by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. Additional support is provided by the Philadelphia Cultural Fund, Agnes Gund, and the Board of Directors and Members of The Fabric Workshop and Museum.