Vadis Turner

Born 1977
Hometown Nashville, Tennessee
Lives and Works Brooklyn, New York
BFA Painting, Boston University, Boston, MA, 1999
MFA Studio Teaching, Boston University, Boston, MA, 2000

Tennessee State Museum, Nashville, TN

21C Museum, Louisville, KY

Kentucky Arts and Crafts Museum, Louisville, KY

Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY

Egon Schiele Art Centrum, Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic

Multimedia artist Vadis Turner became fascinated by the possibilities presented by traditional handicraft materials to define and contradict conventional gender roles. Her dynamic mixed media work began with a debutante gown made out of wax paper from her mother’s kitchen in Tennessee. She continues to be stimulated by the transcendence of the commonplace from its intended function into a vehicle for social commentary. Through exhibitions and residencies in France, the Czech Republic and Japan, she has deepened her vocabulary and expanded her perception of women’s work, both reviving and reinventing a function for handmade objects in a society with progressively fewer hands on activities. Says Turner of her highly tactile work, “ritual and shared experiences are combined with local allegory and materials to create a cultural vernacular. As handmade objects are passed down through generations, they begin to function as a portrait of the artist and her origins. My ever-evolving series of contemporary heirlooms will ultimately compose my dowry, a culturally relevant measure of my worth. My time, like generations of women before me, is judged by what I make with my hands.”

Turner has exhibited across the US and abroad including the Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, National Gallery, Prague, Andy Warhol Museum, Phillidelphia, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, Bass Art Museum, Miami, Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, TN, Islip Art Museum, Islip, NY, National Museum of Trinidad, Trinidad and the National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington DC. 

Courtesy of the Brooklyn Museum

Works Available for Purchase


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