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Howardena


Pindell

Howardena Pindell
Painter and Visual Artist
New York, NY
2020 USA Fellow

This award was generously supported by David Horvitz and Francie Bishop Good.
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Born in Philadelphia in 1943, Howardena Pindell studied painting at Boston University and Yale University. After graduating, Pindell accepted a job at the Museum of Modern Art, where she worked for twelve years (1967–1979), first as exhibition assistant in the Department of National and International Traveling Exhibitions, then as curatorial assistant, assistant curator, associate curator, and finally as an acting director in the Department of Prints and Illustrated Books. In 1979, she began teaching at the State University of New York, Stony Brook where she is now a full professor. Throughout her career, she has exhibited extensively.

Pindell often employs lengthy, metaphorical processes of destruction/reconstruction. She cuts canvases in strips and sews them back together, building up surfaces in elaborate stages. She paints or draws on sheets of paper, punches out dots from the paper using a paper hole punch, drops the dots onto her canvas, and finally squeegees paint through the “stencil” left in the paper from which she had punched the dots. Almost invariably, her paintings are installed unstretched, held to the wall merely by the strength of a few finishing nails. The artist’s fascination with gridded, serialized imagery, along with surface texture appears throughout her oeuvre. Even in her later, more politically charged work, Pindell reverts to these thematic focuses in order to address social issues of homelessness, AIDS, war, genocide, sexism, xenophobia, and apartheid.

Portrait photo by Nathan Keay, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.

garthgreenan.com/artists/howardena-pindell
  • Artwork by Howardena Pindell
    Untitled #4, 1973. Ink and paper collage on paper, dimensions 22.25 × 17.6 inches. Museum of Modern Art, New York. Photo courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.
  • Artwork by Howardena Pindell
    Untitled #20 (Dutch Wives Circled and Squared), 1978. Mixed media on canvas, dimensions 86 × 110 inches. Photo by Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.
  • Artwork by Howardena Pindell
    Separate but Equal Genocide: AIDS, 1991–1992. Mixed media on canvas, dimensions 75.5 × 91 inches. Photo courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.
  • Artwork by Howardena Pindell
    Untitled, 1972. Acrylic on canvas, dimensions 74 × 92 inches. Photo courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.
  • Artwork by Howardena Pindell
    Night Flight, 2015–2016. Mixed media on canvas, dimensions 63 × 77 inches. Collection of Philip Holzer. Photo courtesy the artist and Garth Greenan Gallery, New York.
Artwork by Howardena Pindell Artwork by Howardena Pindell Artwork by Howardena Pindell Artwork by Howardena Pindell Artwork by Howardena Pindell