One year ago on July 4th, the skin of New York City art lovers was crawling. Sheltering in place with museums and galleries shut down, the community’s ability to see great art in person had been taken away. It was one of Covid-19’s lesser abuses, but a loss none the less to those for whom the arts are a lifeline.
One year later, the city’s museums and galleries are open, operating safely, welcoming visitors. Take advantage by channeling the art cravings of July 2020 into a full-on arts binge around New York this 4th.
Shahzia Sikander and will be in conversation with Glenn Lowry, Director of The Museum of Modern Art on the occasion of her exhibition Shahzia Sikander: Extraordinary Realities. The exhibition will be on view at The Morgan Library from June 18 through September 26, 2021. They will discuss Sikander's pioneering role in deconstructing Central and South Asian manuscript painting as a contemporary idiom.
ArtTable's Artist Talks Series is made possible by the Pollock Krasner Foundation. Originally formatted as in-person Artists Breakfasts, ArtTable has moved all programming into the virtual realm during the pandemic. Please join us for a virtual Artist Talk with Shahzia Sikander.
Shahzia will talk about individual works she created in 1988 to 2003, elaborating on the evolution of her unique visual lexicon as she negotiated a language between the pictoral traditions of Central and South Asia and contemporary practices, through the lens of her experience from Pakistan to the US as an immigrant pre and post 9/11 and how that period's shifting socio-political culture shaped her broader practice.
L'Invitation au voyage
WITH WORKS BY SARAH BUCKNER, CUI JIE, CORDULA DITZ, ALMUT HEISE, HANNAH HÖCH, LEIKO IKEMURA, TALA MADANI, ISA MELSHEIMER, SOJOURNER TRUTH PARSONS, PAULA REGO, SHAHZIA SIKANDER, TSAI YI-TING, AND YEESOOKYUNG
Esther Schipper is pleased to present L’Invitation au voyage, an exhibition of painting on the long history of travelling in your imagination, through fantasy or dreams, and ideas of the body as site of projection, conduit and personal discovery.
Join artist Shahzia Sikander for a virtual presentation and reading of her new children’s book, Roots and Wings: How Shahzia Sikander Became an Artist, co-authored with Amy Novesky and illustrated by Hanna Barczyk (available April 2021). Learn about Sikander’s inspirations and influences, and explore how her drawings, paintings, prints, mosaics, and animated films bring traditional artforms into dialogue with contemporary visual practices. Ask questions during a Q&A session.
Join the Department of Performance Studies in conversation about Sadia Abbas's novel, The Empty Room. Abbas will be joined by poet, fiction writer, critic, and translator John Keene and artist Shahzia Sikander.
This conversation will be moderated by Professor Fred Moten.
Examining through the lens of different disciplines, Twelve Gates Arts convenes three diasporic South Asian arts practitioners originally from Pakistan to ask the question: Who gets to tell the story of us?
Shahzia Sikander changed the game of the art world with her breakthrough at the Whitney Biennial in 1997. This year, Salman Toor, debuted his first solo museum exhibition at the Whitney, How Will I Know. In June, Sikander will open a career retrospective, Extraordinary Realities, at the Morgan Library & Museum co-organised with the RISD Museum. Centered on issues of gender, identity, global affiliations, appropriation, and narrative, this conversation engages the relationship between two artists on how they have navigated the shifting worlds of New York and Pakistan. In dialogue, we will pause and reflect over how we got here and anticipate where we are going.
Join the first Urgency of The Arts Assembly: I Need To Talk To You Urgently with guest speakers Abbas Zahedi, Legacy Russell, Shahzia Sikander & Tamu Nkiwane.
Each speaker, nominated by a current student from the School of Arts & Humanities at the RCA, will present an issue that is most important and most pressing to them right now.
Presentations will be followed by Q&A.
Presented by the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, this new series,Radical Thinkers, places radical academics directly in conversation with trailblazing writers, poets, and artists, creating and nurturing two-way dialogues that will interrogate some of the most pressing issues facing Asian and Asian diasporic communities today. Featuring an interdisciplinary lineup of scholars and creatives, these unexpected pairings will center revolutionary discourse and scholarship in an effort to demystify intellectual debates, collapse the divide between the ‘ivory tower’ and the public sphere, and ultimately envision a radical new future.
The first installment of this series presents historian, professor, and AAWW Board Member Manan Ahmed in conversation with acclaimed visual artist Shahzia Sikander.
Virtual Gallery Tour and Artist Conversation with Dr. Ainsley M. Cameron and Jason Rosenfeld. In the first session of this program, Shahzia Sikander will lead a virtual tour of the exhibit and will be joined by Jason Rosenfeld for a conversation about the works in the show. Dr. Ainsley M. Cameron will lead a discussion with Shahzia in the second session where they will discuss themes of feminism in Sikander’s work.
Shahzia Sikander will be in conversation with the inimitable composer Du Yun, awarded the Pulitzer in Music in 2017, who wrote the musical score for all three films. Du Yun and Sikander’s decade-long collaborations span Shanghai, New York, Sharjah, Istanbul, Hong Kong, and Pakistan and speak to their ‘creative intimacy,’ female agency and shared passion for finding common ground through multiple languages.
Interesting. Unusual. Uniquely NYC. Highlights of this week’s top events include Weeping Willows, Liquid Tongues, Women to the Fore, Asia Society’s Triennial and more. Get the NYC-ARTS Top Five in your inbox every Friday and follow @NYC_ARTS on Instagram or @NYCARTS on Twitter to stay abreast of events as they happen.
Weeping Willows, Liquid Tongues
NOVEMBER 5 – DECEMBER 19, 2020
Artist Talk, Wednesday, September 30, 5:30pm
Sean Kelly is delighted to announce Shahzia Sikander’s inaugural exhibition with the gallery and her first exhibition in New York City in nine years. Weeping Willows, Liquid Tongues is an expansive, in-depth look into Sikander’s recent work, featuring the artist’s dynamic large-and-intimately-scaled drawings, a captivating new single channel video-animation, luminous, intricate mosaics and her first ever free-standing sculpture.
Please join Shahzia Sikander and Sean Kelly in conversation as they discuss Sikander’s inaugural exhibition at the gallery, the artist's career, working in a new medium and her forthcoming monograph and exhibitions at The Morgan Library, New York in June 2021 followed by the RISD Museum, Rhode Island in November 2021, and MFA Houston, Texas, Spring 2022.
Usually at this time of the year Park Avenue Armory shines with the extraordinary treasures shown during TEFAF New York. This year, the fall season in New York is inevitably quite different, with no fairs at Armory and less events and exhibitions around. Back in March, TEFAF in Maastricht was one of the very last European fairs happening in person, but they were eventually forced to close early due to coronavirus cases spreading and negative comments by dealers blasting the fair for allowing the risk of infections. Now, even the prestigious and long-running European Fine Art Fair in New York has gone virtual, and their quality this time was secured by a top-notch vetting process.
Each of the 300 exhibitors had to choose only one item to present–an artwork, design object, or exquisite jewel–resulting in a quite agile and very elegant online display you’ll be able to enjoy until Wednesday, November 4. Here are 10 stand-out treasures and treats we would love to have–also to sweeten this bitter fall.
With the days getting shorter, it feels especially important to sneak in a few bright spots of pleasure where you can. Below, we’ve assembled a list of 10 exhibitions that have stirred some insights and excitement. Like we did for our October guide, this month we’ve highlighted a mix of online and in-person exhibitions, many of which are by appointment. As always, stay safe and don’t forget your mask.
In 1994 Asia Society launched its contemporary art program with “Asia/America: Identities in Asian American Art,” a landmark exhibition that considered bicultural identity in the work of diasporic and Asian American artists living and working in the United States. A quarter-century later, this panel will reflect on the current playing field of artistic representation for Asian American and Asian diasporic artists in the United States and how these artists position themselves within a globalized art world. This conversation features artists Jordan Nassar and Shahzia Sikander and is moderated by Michelle Yun, senior curator, Asian contemporary art and associate director, Asia Society Triennial.
We are pleased to invite you the next artist talk of On Making, 2020 – a series that delves into the age-old query of “how do we make?” Tracing the different arcs of art and exhibition-making and how these might respond to the changing contours of tomorrow, we have with us this week a leading pioneer of neo-miniature herself – Shahzia Sikander.
Each week, we search New York City for the most exciting and thought-provoking shows, screenings, and events. In light of the global health crisis, we are currently highlighting events and digitally, as well as in-person exhibitions open in the New York area. See our picks from around the world below. (Times are all EST unless otherwise noted.)
Never Done: 100 Years of Women in Politics and Beyond takes the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment as the occasion for reflection and exploration of the issues and challenges women in the United States have faced, and continue to face, in politics and society.
What has been accomplished in the last 100 years, and what has yet to be accomplished?
The fight for the 19th amendment was achieved through marches, demonstrations, and protest tactics that are still used today. And in the current moment of protest and activism around racism in the United States, Never Donespeaks to the role of race and class in shaping women’s participation in politics and the public sphere.
One of the most pleasing side effects of the social-distancing era is the energy galleries are putting into sharing video art—a medium often marginalized at art fairs and even in IRL gallery spaces—with the public. Sean Kelly Gallery has launched a #FilmFridays series, in which it screens full-length video works on its Vimeo for free for 24 hours. This week’s film is Pakistani-American artist Shahzia Sikander’s Parallax, which presents animations made in collaboration with composer Du Yun that combine Indo-Persian miniature painting with abstraction. The film’s release coincides with what would have been the artist’s first New York gallery show in nine years. If you tune in, make sure to post a picture of your at-home screening setup and tag the gallery—the best environment will win a signed copy of a Sikander catalogue.
Each week, we search New York City for the most exciting and thought-provoking shows, screenings, and events. In light of the global health crisis, we are currently highlighting events and exhibitions available digitally. See our picks from around the world below. (Times are all EST unless otherwise noted.)
Ideas and Futures: A Collaborative for Just and Vibrant Societies is a non-profit dedicated to fostering collaborative, international intellectual and creative approaches to contemporary crises of polity, society, democracy and imagination in relation to ongoing struggles for dignity, freedom and sustainability. We believe that the humanities are vital to these discussions and advocate vigorously for their capacity to contribute to the most pressing social questions, urgencies and debates. We value and encourage experimental work that crosses boundaries of media, discipline and nations.
Explore the role of women in art and art history at the Cincinnati Art Museum through works from the museum’s permanent collection created from the seventeenth century to today. Art from across Europe, North America and Asia in a range of mediums will be featured together, including oil on canvas, metalwork, ceramic, prints, photography, and fashion. Prominent artists include Georgia O’Keeffe, Lorna Simpson, Kara Walker, Mary Cassatt, Julia Margaret Cameron, Elizabeth Catlett, and Chiyo Mitsuhisa. The exhibition will encourage visitors to think critically about gender, representation, and diversity and how that translates to the museum’s collecting practices and gallery installations.
Glitch brings together a group of international artists to explore the ways our understanding of the past, present and future is mediated through technology. The exhibit will span video art, digital paintings, photographs, multimedia installations, drawings, paintings and sculptures. Exhibited artists include VJ Um Amel (b. Alexandria, Egypt), Petra Cortright (b. Santa Barbara, United States), Shady El Noshokaty (b. Damietta, Egypt), Mounir Fatmi (b. Tangier, Morocco), Jonathon Hexner (b. Dhaka, Bangladesh), Pouran Jinchi (b. Mashhad, Iran), Basim Magdy (b. Assiut, Egypt), Haytham Nawar (b. Gharbiya, Egypt), Mona Omar (b. Cairo, Egypt), Kour Pour (b. Exeter, United Kingdom), Shahzia Sikander (b. Lahore, Pakistan) and Talisker (b. Paris, France).
The Annual Aleph Review Issue 4 was launched at the Lahore Literary Festival 2020, Featuring Shahzia Sikander's work Novice Thon from her 'Monks and Novices' Series (2006-2008) on the cover. This issue includes a dialogue with Shahzia Sikander and Sadia Abbas, The Scroll and the Empty Room.
After dark each night of the Festival, multiple sites along the Wellington waterfront will light up with an array of large-scale artworks.
Throughout history, public spaces have been the setting for both shared catharsis and collective imagination. Into the Open is a programme of moving-image artworks that will be projected along the waterfront throughout the Festival. Responding to the programmes curated by Lemi Ponifasio, Laurie Anderson and Bret McKenzie, this three-week series brings into the open artistic visions of what it means to be human, together.
Every Monday, the artworks will change to reflect the spirit of each Guest Curator’s vision, so come back each week to experience art in the open. Follow the pathway of artworks or linger with a moment painted large with light.
It is something new and a billion-dollar industry: fashion fashion. You may have never heard of it, you may already be wearing it. The Stedelijk Museum Schiedam is the first museum in the Netherlands to show this international fashion phenomenon with work by contemporary designers combined with contemporary art.
The creations of this vanguard are fashionable and covered. Women who do not want to participate in the 'aesthetics of being exposed' wear it, religious or not. Whereas the miniskirt was once seen as a feminist statement, now women want to be free and decide how to show themselves to the world: choose yourself! Modest fashion is therefore not about the question 'covered or not?', But about the freedom of choice and creativity of women around the world. The exhibition marks the 100-year anniversary of women's suffrage in the Netherlands and celebrates that 100 years ago the first woman came to the city council of Schiedam. Minister of Culture Ingrid van Engelshoven will perform the opening.
This presentation by Christiane Gruber explores a number of paintings of the Prophet Muhammad produced in Persian and Turkish lands from the fourteenth century to the modern-day. Ranging from veristic to abstract, these images represent Muhammad’s individual traits, primordial luminosity, and veiled essence. Their pictorial motifs reveal that artists engaged in abstract thought and turned to symbolic motifs in order to imagine Muhammad’s primordial origins and prophetic standing. In creating and gazing upon such images, artists and viewers also were inspired by various mystical beliefs and practices, including devotional invocation, in the process seeking to express their piety through both verbal and pictorial language. Within a variety of Islamic expressive cultures, paintings thus have functioned as a powerful means for devotional engagement with Muhammad, the “praiseworthy” Prophet and Messenger of Islam.
how the light gets in is an exhibition about the movement of people across the globe and the welcome cracks that develop in our notions of borders and nation states—“that’s how the light gets in,” Leonard Cohen sang in his 1992 song “Anthem”:
Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in
The exhibition brings together an international group of 58 artists and artist teams and collectives, ranging in age from their twenties to their nineties and representing 29 countries of birth and residence. Their work engages with themes of migration, immigration, displacement, and exile. Artworks including drawing, photography, painting, sculpture, and video will be installed in all of the Museum’s temporary exhibition galleries, contemporary collection gallery, lobbies, and on the facade and grounds.
Dr. John Seyller, Professor of Art History at the University of Vermont, leads a gallery talk on the dynamic intersection of the tradition of Indian miniature painting and the contemporary videos of Shahzia Sikander, featured artist in Transcendent.
Shahzia Sikander merges the South Asian tradition of miniature painting with contemporary forms and styles, creating visually compelling, resonant works. Her multi-scaled imagery crosses boundaries of geography, religion, and style. Sikander earned her BFA from the National College of Arts in Lahore in 1992 and her MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1995. She has exhibited nationally and internationally at venues such as the Pakistan Embassy in Washington, D.C.; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; the San Diego Museum of Art, California; Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; and Museum Ludwig in Cologne, Germany. Sikander has received many accolades including the Asia Society Award for Significant Contribution to Contemporary Art (2015); MacArthur Fellowship (2006); Inaugural Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center Creative Arts Fellowship, Italy (2009); Joan Mitchell Award (1998–99); Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Award (1997); and the Shakir Ali Award from the National College of Arts, Lahore, Pakistan (1992). Shahzia Sikander currently resides in New York, NY where she is represented by Sean Kelly Gallery.
Sikander’s pioneering practice takes classical Indo-Persian miniature painting as its point of departure and challenges the strict formal tropes of the genre by experimenting with scale and various forms of new media. Trained as a miniaturist at the National College of Arts (NCA), Lahore, Sikander has developed a unique, critically charged approach to this time-honoured medium. Informed by South Asian, American, Feminist and Muslim perspectives, Sikander employs the miniature’s continuous capacity for reinvention to interrogate ideas of language, trade, empire, and migration. At the NCA, Sikander’s thesis project, the Scroll, launched what has come to be called the neo-miniature, and she was the first woman to teach miniature painting. H er works encompass painting, drawing, animation, installation, video and film. Shahzia Sikander has previously shown at the Aga Khan Museum as part of “Nuit Blanche” (2017) and “Listening to Art, Seeing Music” (2018).
“Highlights 2012-2019” is the first retrospective of Fanoon Center For Printmedia Research’s growing collection of international and regional artists including Bryan Graf, Bryan Jabs, Chloe Lum and Yannick Desranleau, Diyan Achjadi, Fares Cachoux, Jenny Schmid, John D. Freyer, Katie Vida, Koichi Yamamoto, Las Hermanas Iglesias, Mary Laube, Michael Perrone, Ranjani Shettar, Sean Kuhnke, Shahzia Sikander, Shaurya Kumar, Sonya Clark, Susan Chrysler White and Trenton Doyle Hancock.
Transcendent presents a selection of artists who explore or evoke themes of spirituality through their work. Challenging the unspoken taboo of representing the divine or faith in contemporary art, Transcendent aims to connect art and creative practice with the meditative or the sacred. Drawing from diverse traditions, the works in this exhibition reflect on questions of human nature, cultural identity, and sanctity in everyday life. Through a variety of approaches these artists seek a greater purpose in their work and a way to connect with the world. Featuring nationally and internationally recognized artists, Transcendent includes works by Anila Quayyum Agha, Leonardo Benzant, Maïmouna Guerresi, Shahzia Sikander, Sandy Sokoloff, Shelley Warren, and Zarina.
BCA Exhibitions are funded in part by a grant from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, National Endowment for the Arts, and Vermont Arts Council.
The Lahore Literary Festival (LLF), one of South Asia’s premier cultural events, returns to Asia Society New York for the third year. LLF in New York will explore contemporary Pakistan through artists, writers, and commentators. The festival will present American audiences with a more nuanced view of Pakistan and include discussions on fiction and nonfiction writing, art, architecture, history and politics.
Malala expresses to David Letterman the importance of fighting against the ideologies that counteract women's equality. Watch My Next Guest Needs No Introduction With David Letterman on Netflix: https://www.netflix.com/title/80209096
A provocative, unprecedented anthology featuring original short stories on what it means to be an American from thirty bestselling and award-winning authors with an introduction by Pulitzer Prize–winning author Viet Thanh Nguyen: “This chorus of brilliant voices articulating the shape and texture of contemporary America makes for necessary reading” (Lauren Groff, author of Fates and Furies).
Sikander, Rick Lowe and Julie Mehretu (RISD MFA ’97) will discuss the cultural landscape from the 1990’s to present day and their part in shaping it. The friends will develop a dialogue about artists supporting artists, collaborations, mentoring, and what lies ahead.
On Friday November 10 at 7 pm, join artist Shahzia Sikander in conversation with Sadia Abbas moderated by Richard Davis as the opening event of Lahore on my Mind, a public festival that moves between the past and the present to explore the early modern, colonial, and contemporary cultural worlds of South Asia.
Biennales held all across the World (amounting to a physical sum prestige of over 100 cities so far) play an important role in connecting forlorn landscapes with their shrouded history of arts and culture in order to help build a more inspired and creative society, giving people a sense of who they are and where they’ve come from. The Karachi Biennale 2017 (KB17), a project of the Karachi Biennale Trust (KBT) comprising of a group of diligent curators, art educators and professional enthusiasts, drew to a close on Sunday after two weeks of art exhibits used to bring together diverse communities of the metropolis.
The Karachi Biennale 2017 (KB17) is Pakistan’s largest international contemporary art event set to feature on a holistically large scale platform every two years in Karachi. Beginning this year on October 22, over 160 national and international artists from 34 countries around the globe responded to a common theme: WITNESS – seeking to engage the public by use of art as a lens to conceptualize the city and its concerns. Whether it was the performances at the Frere Hall, or visits to the 12 chosen venues turned into free and public art spaces across the city, the diverse audience of spectators was excited to be a part of a series of discursive sessions that helped them experience culture in an open, secure and engaging environment.
The Art of Independence: Visions of the Future in India and Pakistan A conference held at at the Ashmolean Museum on 12 October 2017 and the Courtauld Institute of Art on 13 October 2017, convened by Faisal Devji and Mallica Kumbera Landrus (University of Oxford) with Deborah Swallow and Zehra Jumabhoy (The Courtauld Institute of Art, London). The conference was co-organised by the Ashmolean Museum, the Courtauld Institute of Art—Sackler Research Forum, the Oxford Centre for Global History and the Asian Studies Centre of St Antony’s College, and co-funded by the Oxford India Centre for Sustainable Development of Somerville College, the John Fell Fund, the Radhakrishnan Fund, the University Engagement Programme (funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation), and the Oxford Research Centre in the Humanities. Day 2, Futures Lost and Found: Citizenship and Contemporary Art (The Courtauld Institute of Art, London) Shahzia Sikander in conversation with Faisal Devji
Lucid Dreams and Distant Visions: South Asian Art in the Diaspora, organized by Asia Society Museum with the support of the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center, considers the work of nineteen contemporary artists from the South Asian diaspora who explore notions of home and issues relating to migration, gender, race, and memory across mediums and aesthetics. These artists represent a microcosm of the American experience and their respective practices across four decades have collectively made a significant impact on the development of contemporary art in the United States.
Featured artists: Jaishri Abichandani, Anila Quayyum Agha, Mequitta Ahuja, Rina Banerjee, Khalil Chishtee, Ruby Chishti, Allan deSouza, Chitra Ganesh, Mariam Ghani, Vandana Jain, Gautam Kansara, Annu Palakunnathu Matthew, Naeem Mohaiemen, Kanishka Raja, Tenzing Rigdol, Shahzia Sikander, Jaret Vadera, Palden Weinreb, and Zarina.
A three- day convening of established and mid career South Asian American artists, academics and curators. Fatal Love: Where Are We Now? examines contemporary art production by artists, academics and curators in the South Asian American diaspora. Although we have had a strong presence in the New York art world for the last two decades, we have yet to engage in a nationwide dialogue. A lack of institutional support and scarcity of full time contemporary art South Asian curators employed in any local museums have prevented generations of artists from forming networks that go beyond the local to a national scale.
Shahzia Sikander, the Pakistani-American artist whose works delves into drawing, painting, animation, installation, performance, and video, has signed on to show with Sean Kelly Gallery in New York. She will figure prominently in the gallery’s booth at the Armory Show next week, with longer-range plans including a solo exhibition at the Chelsea gallery, to be presented in late 2017 or early 2018.
Thursday, February 4, 2016
Shahzia Sikander will participate in a panel discussion on women in printmaking at the New York Public Library's Schwarzman Building on February 4, 2016, 6pm. The event will begin with cocktails and include a tour of the library's current exhibition, chronicling women in printmaking from 1570 to 1900.
The panel will be moderated by Anne Higonnet, Ann Whitney Olin Professor in the Department of Art History and Archaeology at Barnard. The discussion will also include Pace Prints collaborator April Gornik and Dana Schutz.
Sikander is currently working on her first print edition with Pace Prints, to be published this spring.
Asia Society Art Gala is the signature event during the week of Art Basel in Hong Kong. Major art collectors from the region, artists, gallerists, dignitaries from the art world, and Asia Society Trustees and patrons will gather to honor artists Shahzia Sikander, Do Ho Suh, Wucius Wong, and Xu Bing for their significant contributions to contemporary art.
All proceeds from the Asia Society Art Gala will support Asia Society initiatives worldwide. Asia Society’s Art Gala is co-organized by Asia Society Museum New York and Asia Society Hong Kong Center.
"In my line of work, we often talk about the art of diplomacy as we try to make people’s lives a little better around the world. But, in fact, art is also a tool of diplomacy. It reaches beyond governments, past the conference rooms and presidential palaces, to help us connect with more people in more places. It is a universal language in our search for common ground, an expression of our shared humanity.
That’s why Art in Embassies is so important. The Museum of Modern Art first envisioned this global visual-arts program in 1953, and President John F. Kennedy formalized it at the U.S. Department of State in 1963. Working with over 20,000 participants globally, including artists, museums, collectors, and galleries, this laNewsndmark public-private partnership shares the work of more than 4,000 American and international artists annually in more than 200 U.S. Embassies and Consulates around the world. These can be exhibitions, permanent collections, site-specific commissions, or two-way artist exchanges. Many remarkable artists have been involved with Art in Embassies, and this year we were proud to award the first biennial U.S. Department of State Medal of Arts to Cai Guo-Qiang, Jeff Koons, Shahzia Sikander, Kiki Smith, and Carrie Mae Weems." - Hillary Clinton