Doreen Garner

Return to Artist List






Artist Statement

RAP CULTURE, FEMINISM, CRAFT, PATHOLOGY, IDENTITY, FETISH, ABNORMALITY, RACE, SEXUALITY, BEAUTY, ANATOMY, CULTURAL VALUE, AND PERSONAL NARRATIVE. These themes penetrate my artistic practice, collaging into visual depictions of a life that is my own. In sculpture, video, and performance, I reconfigure my perverse observations as a black, Christian, female artist into new, uncanny experiences. The work is raw. The work is twisted. The work is visually combative, challenging the viewer to confront it and me. Conflating difficult materials into compositions that contest established standards of normativity and desirability, I challenge pervasive social conventions, orchestrating comfortability and uncomfortability within the viewing psyche. Whether in stationary works or live actions, my materials also represent a potential translation between contrasting perspectives that we—the viewer, and myself the creator—can use to communicate. Appealing qualities of light and reflectivity for example, are implied through glass, saliva, mirror, wet specimens, glitter, discharge, and Swarovski crystals. These materials secrete and circulate throughout my work-space, thought process, and forms of public address.

BANDANAS, STUFFED CONDOMS, PEARLS, CHAINS, HAIR WEAVE, BEADS, DENTURE-REJECTED TEETH, PAINT, LATEX, MASTERBATORY GRADE SILICONE, COSTUMEJEWELRY, CRUSTALS, GLASS EYES, ZIT-COLORED CABOCHONS, and TAMPONS. These materials populate the interior and exterior surfaces of my sculptural objects—blown ultra-thin glass membranes, fragile visceral tissues resembling tumor forms. Combining elements of the grotesque and the beautiful, the hot glass forms are bulbous, seeping, colorful, transparent, and organic. Embalmed with charged materials occupying their negative space, they are also adorned on the outside to resemble medical images of cancerous phenomena, tissue irregularity, and cellular malignancies—visual obstacles for the viewer to renegotiate against their standards of attraction. As a child, my younger sister had a massive stroke, acquiring physical disabilities and an alternative facial structure that pulled her cheeks, mouth, and ocular muscles aggressively off center. Alongside her, I battled negative attention from the public, knowing the beautiful, glowing, and gentle person that she was beneath that distorted surface.




Master of Fine Arts in Glass at Rhode Island School of Design Providence RI
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture Skowhegan, ME
Bachelor of Fine Arts in Glass at Tyler School of Art of Temple University Philadelphia PA


White Ma n On A Pedestal Duo Exhibition Pioneer Works, Brooklyn NY
Doreen G arner: Trials in Era Solo Exhibition George Mason University
So mething I Can Feel Group Show Volta Art Fair Curated by Derrick Adams Manhattan NY
Subject To Capital Group Show Abrons Art Center, Manhattan NY
MAMI Group Show The Knockdown Center, Queens NY
Removing the Veil: Vanity as Material for Incision Essex Flowers, NEW YORK NY
FLORA : VISCERA Solo Exhibition Wavehill, Bronx NY
PARACOSM: NEW WORLDS IN GLASS Group Exhibtion Norte Maar, Brooklyn NY
Ether and Agony Solo Exhibition Antenna Gallery, New Orleans LA
Young and Loving Group Exhibition S12 Bergen Norway
PUSSY DON’T FAIL ME NOW Group Exhibition Cindy Rucker Gallery, Manhattan NY
Gross Clinic Glass Performance Chrysler Museum of Art, Norfolk VA
New Work Group Exhibition Urban Glass, Brooklyn NY
Body Pol itic: The Anatomy of the Grotesque University Museum of Contemporary Art, MA
International Glass Prize Group Exhibition Glazen Huis Museum, Belgium
International Glass Prize Glass Tower Installation Glazen Huis Museum, Belgium
SHINY / RED / PUMPING Solo Exhibition Vox Populi Gallery, Philadelphia PA
Girl Bye Group Exhibition Rush Arts Gallery, Curator: Rashaad Newsome, New York NY
Black Ocean / Big Black Motherfucker Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture
ABJECTION Solo Exhibition Bannister Gallery, Providence RI
R hode Island School of Design MFA Thesis Exhibition Convention Center, Providence RI
More Beautiful for Having Been Broken Brown University List Gallery, Providence RI
Abstract Affinities Group Exhibition Find & Form Space, Boston MA
Our Beloved Community Group Exhibition Expose Gallery, Providence RI
It Doesn’t Show Signs of Stopping Group Exhibition AS220 Project Gallery, Providence RI
The Gaze Group Exhibition Sarah Doyle Gallery, Providence Ri
Last Week Group Exhibition Benson Hall Gallery, Providence RI
RISD Glass MFA Biennial Group Exhibition Sol Kofler Gallery, Providence RI
RISD Glass Triennial Group Exhibition Woods
Gerry Gallery, Providence RI


Franklin Furnace Fund Grant Recipient
Van Lier Fellowship Wavehill
Toby Devan Lewis Fellowship Award Rhode Island School of Design
Wood Institute Fellowship Research Grant Recipient College of Physicians of Philadelphia
Rhode Island School of Design Presidential Scholarship Awarded Full Tuition Scholarship


Artist in Residence Pioneer Works Studio Residency Program Brooklyn,NY
GAPP Visiting Artist ToledoMuseum of Art Toledo OH
Visiting Artist in Residence Urban Glass Brooklyn NY
Winter Workspace Program Artist in Residence Wavehill Bronx, NY
Abrons AIR Space Residency Abrons Art Center, NY
S12 Glass Artist in Residence S12 Bergen, Norway
LMCC Workspace Program 2014 2015 Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, NY
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture Skowhegan ME

Dazed Magazine
Berlin Art Link
The Architecture of Tomorrow’s Art and Culture
Art Collector http://
ARTNET: 20 Emerging Female Artists to Keep on Your Radar
BUST Magazine:
BOMB Magazine:
GLASS QUARTERLY: 3 Questions for Doreen Garner…doreengarner
15 Feminist Artists Respond to Censorship of Women’s Bodies Online Huffington Post
Shefolk: Interview with Sculptor and Performance Artist Doreen Garner
GAS News Student Profile: Doreen Garner