Studio #107 Kaneem Smith

Kaneem Smith

My fiber-based sculptural installations draw inspiration from a familial and historical standpoint personal experience and the human condition. My ideas of transience and transcendence are apparent within the methods and materials I incorporate into each fiber form, and in the coarse gaps of material warp and weft, I impart a sense of temporal wear and the strains of labor, revealing circuits of exchange and power.

My current exploration of three-dimensional form incorporates ideas of subtle exploitation of human anthropology, archeology, and American history. As a fiber artist and sculptor, these concepts run a common thread throughout my body of work. The fibers I choose to work with such as natural cotton, wool and burlap are associated with cultural memories that transform ‘space’ without altering its organic integrity. The associative quality of these materials produces an archeological effect, forcing the viewer to uproot unknown histories—who worked with these textiles, what goods did they transport, from where, to who?

By creating thought-provoking installations out of repurposed fabric materials for my sculptural investigations, I hope to challenge the viewer to participate in a dialogue that references global concerns on ethical trade, the West’s over-consumption of natural resources, colonialist interactions on the natural environment and the economy of developing nations.