Heavy Metal, the fifth installment in NMWA’s Women to Watch exhibition series, showcases contemporary artists working in metal. The exhibition series is presented every two to three years and is a dynamic collaboration between the museum and participating outreach committees. The 20 committees participating in Women to Watch 2018 worked with curators in their respective regions to create shortlists of artists working with metal. From this list, NMWA curators selected the artists whose work is on view in Heavy Metal.
Featured artists in Heavy Metal investigate the physical properties and expressive possibilities of metalwork through a wide variety of objects, including sculpture, jewelry, and conceptual forms. Works in the exhibition range from large-scale installations to small objects intended for personal adornment; these disparate works are fashioned out of iron, steel, bronze, silver, gold, brass, tin, aluminum, copper, and pewter. This exhibition seeks to disrupt the predominantly masculine narrative that surrounds metalworking and demonstrate that contemporary women artists carry on a vibrant legacy in the field.
The exhibition features works by Cheryl Eve Acosta (Greater Kansas City Area), Rana Begum (United Kingdom), Carolina Rieckhof Brommer (Peru), Lola Brooks (Georgia), Paula Castillo (New Mexico), Charlotte Charbonnel (France), Venetia Dale (Massachusetts), Petronella Eriksson (Sweden), Susie Ganch (Mid-Atlantic Region), Alice Hope (Greater New York Region), Leila Khoury (Ohio), Holly Laws (Arkansas), Blanca Muñoz (Spain), Beverly Penn (Texas), Serena Porrati (Italy), Alejandra Prieto (Chile), Kerianne Quick (Southern California), Carolina Sardi (Florida), Katherine Vetne (Northern California), and Kelsey Wishik (Mississippi).
Heavy Metal—Women to Watch 2018 is organized by the National Museum of Women in the Arts and sponsored by the participating committees. The exhibition is generously supported by the Clara M. Lovett Emerging Artists Fund, Share Fund, the Texas State Committee of NMWA, and the NMWA Advisory Board, with additional funding provided by the Sue J. Henry and Carter G. Phillips Exhibition Fund, Marisa and Vincent Boulard, Nellie Partow, Southern Copper Corporation, and Vhernier.
Further support is provided by Acción Cultural Española, FOMA Group, and Shepherd Finkelman Miller & Shah, LLP. Special thanks to San Francisco Advocacy for NMWA for their support of the Heavy Metal catalogue. The museum extends appreciation to the Embassy of Chile in Washington, D.C., Embassy of Italy with the Italian Institute of Culture in Washington, D.C.; the Embassy of Peru in the U.S.; and the Embassy of Spain in Washington, D.C., with SPAIN arts & culture.