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Xaviera Simmons

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New York

Birth year

Lives in
New York

Works in
New York

Representing galleries

Current Exhibitions and Events
Jun, 2015 Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
May, 2015 Poetics of Relation
Pérez Art Museum Miami

Xaviera Simmons's body of work spans photography, performance, video, sound, sculpture and installation. She defines her studio practice, which is rooted in an ongoing investigation of experience, memory, abstraction, present and future histories-specifically shifting notions surrounding landscape-as cyclical rather than linear. In other words, Simmons is committed equally to the examination of different artistic modes and processes; for example, she may dedicate part of a year to photography, another part to performance, and other parts to installation, video, and sound works-keeping her practice in constant and consistent rotation, shift, and engagement. 

Simmons received her BFA from Bard College (2004) after spending two years on a walking pilgrimage retracing the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade with Buddhist Monks. She completed the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program in Studio Art (2005) while simultaneously completing a two-year actor-training conservatory with The Maggie Flanigan Studio. Simmons has exhibited nationally and internationally where major exhibitions and performances include: The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA PS1, The Studio Museum In Harlem, The Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, The Public Art Fund, and The Sculpture Center. Selected solo and group exhibitions for 2013-2014 include Archive As Impetus at The Museum Of Modern Art; Underscore at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum; Open at David Castillo Gallery; Rehearsals at The Savannah College Of Art and Design; and Radical Presence" at The Studio Museum In Harlem among many others. Her works are in major museum and private collections including Deutsche Bank, UBS, The Guggenheim Museum, The Agnes Gund Art Collection, The Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, The Studio Museum in Harlem, MOCA Miami, and Perez Art Museum Miami.


Born in 1974 in New York; lives & works in New York

Whitney Museum Independent Study Program, New York, NY
Maggie Flanigan Studio, 2-Year Actor Training Conservatory, New York, NY

BFA, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY


Underscore, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Ridgefield, CT
Archive as Impetus (Not on View), The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Untitled, Real Art Ways, Hartford CT

This Is Not Just A Dinner, Theertha/ Red Dot Gallery, Colombo Sri Lanka
Untitled, 126 Gallery, Gallway, Ireland
Plant! Seed! Sew! ADAA/Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery, NY
When You're Looking At Me, You're Looking At Country, More Art, New York, NY
Salt 4, Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Salt Lake City, UT
Studio! Studio! (Chelsea), More Art, New York, NY
Wilderness,  Nicole Klagsbrun Gallery, New York, NY
Exhibition A,, New York, NY

(Harvest): Any Number of Myths and Stories, David Castillo Gallery, Miami, FL
Junctures (Transmissions To), The Goethe-Institute/ The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY
Limited Editionn, Art in General, New York, NY
Performance: Real Art Ways, Hartford, CT
Oscillation: For A Minute There, I Lost Myself, The Museum of Art And Design, NY, NY
The Tunnel Room, John Connelly Presents, NY, NY
Perspectives 157, Electric Relaxation: Digital Good Time, Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, TX

The Hustle Never Siops in Lagos (et al), The Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum, Santa Barbara, CA
How to Break Your Own Heart, Art in General, New York, NY
Landscape: Expanded Engagement, Extended Space, Jamiaca Center for Arts and Learning, Jamaica, NY


Tête a Tête, curated by Mickalene Thomas, QF Gallery, East Hampton, NY
Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary At, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY
Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art, Grey Art Gallery, New York University, New York, NY
Pivot Points: 15 Years and Counting, MoCA North Miami, North Miami, FL
Un-Drawn, Philadelphia Photo Arts Center, Philadelphia, PA

Dark Flow Lurking, David Castillo Gallery, Miami, FL         
Radical Presence: Black Performance in Contemporary Art, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, TX
Primary Sources, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY
Emerge Selections, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
A Matter of Practice, curated by Lydia Bell, Danspace Project, New York, NY
SuperHUMAN, Central Utah Center, Ephraim, UT; Aljira A Center for Contemporary Art, Newark, NJ
What Do You Believe In, curated by Amy Smith-Stewart, New York Photo Festival, New York, NY  
Twisted Sister, Dodge Gallery, New York, NY
Tête-à-tête, curated by Mickalene Thomas, Yancey Richardson Gallery, New York, NY
Tête-à-tête, curated by Mickalene Thomas, Rhona Hoffman Gallery, Chicago, IL
The Record, Henry Art Gallery, Seattle, WA
Where Do We Migrate To, The Sheila C. Johnson Design Center at the New School, New York, NY
The Record, Miami Art Museum, Miami, FL
Where Do We Migrate To, Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans, LA
The Bearden Project, Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY
30 Americans, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington D.C
Becoming: Photographs from the Wedge Collection, Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, Durham, NC
After Destiny The Contemporary American Landscape, Flanders Art Gallery, Raleigh, NC  
Sum of the Parts, David Castillo Gallery, Miami, FL
Oceanomania: Souveniers from a Mysterious Sea, Nouveau Musee National de Monaco, Monaco
The Record, Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston MA
Flux This! with Pope L. and Special Guests, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
30 Americans, North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh, NC
Building the Contemporary Collection: Five Years of Acquisitions, The Nasher Museum at Duke University, Durham, NC
Hydrarchy: Power and Resistance at Sea, Contemporary Image Collective, Cairo, Egypt
Stargazers: Elizabeth Catlett in Conversation with 21 Contemporary Artists, The Bronx Museum Of Art, NY
Why Do We Migrate, The Center For Art, Design and Visual Culture, Baltimore, MD
Stephen Burkes: Are You A Hybrid, The Museum Of Art and Design, New York, NY           

Greater New York, PS.1, New York, NY
The Record, The Nasher Museum at Duke University, Durham, NC
Compass NY, Avant Guide To NY, Apext Art and The Storefront For Art and Architecture, NY
Open Score Variations, Hessel Museum Of Art and CCS Galleries, Bard College, Annandale on Hudson, NY
Group Show, Clifford Chance US LLP, New York, NY
The Reach of Realism, MoCA, North Miami, FL
30 Seconds Off An Inch, The Studio Museum In Harlem, NY

Foto Festival, Images Recalled, Curated by Tobias Berger, Heidelberg, Germany
In Practice, The Sculpture Center, New York, NY
Incheon Women’s Artist Biennial, Incheon, Korea
“Wrong” Eighth Veil Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Signs Taken For Wonder, Curated by Isolde Breielmaier, Jack Shainman Gallery, NY, NY
Negritude, Exit Art, NY, NY
We The People, Context Gallery, Derry, Ireland

30 Americans, Rubell Family Collection, Miami, FL
T.error, Your Fear Is An External Object, Kunsthalle, Budapest-Menu Point, Budapest, Hungary
Untitled, John Connelly Presents, NY, NY
Facing Race: Four African-American Artists Speak Out, Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland, Cleveland, OH
Street Art, Street Life, The Bronx Museum Of Art, Bronx, NY
Richard Wright at 100, National Civil Rights Museum, Memphis, TN
Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women Artists and the Moving Image, Contemporary Arts Museum Houston, Houston, TX
Whitney Art Party, The Whitney Museum Of Art, NY, NY
Re-Imagine Kenya, Sikkema Jenkins &Co, NY, NY
Mixtape, Exit Art, NY, NY
Show One, Kate Werble Gallery, NY, NY
Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women Artists and the Moving Image Since 1970, Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, Atlanta, GA

The FM Ferry Experiment, (programmed by NeuroTransmitter), Staten sland Ferry, NY, NY
Interpreting Utopia, Samuel Dorsky Museum Of Art, SUNY New Paltz, New Paltz, NY
A New Era Americana, (Corona Plaza) The Queens Museum, Queens, NY
The Postmillennial Black Madonna, MOCADA, New York, NY
Shaken Not Deterred, Curated By Brian Keith Jackson, NY, NY
"A Jamaica Queens Thing,", The Jamaica Center For Arts And Learning,NY, NY
Open Studio, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York, NY

Black Alphabet (Contexts In Contemporary African American Art), Zacheta National Gallery Of Art, Warsaw, Poland
Peekskil Project, Hudson Valley Center For Contemporary Art, Peekskill, NY
E7, Aljira Center for Art, Newark, NJ
Harlem Art Project, Saatchi and Saatchi, New York,
Curators Choice, Scope Art Fair, curated by Franklin Sirmans, NY
Performance Art Fair, curated by Dean Dedirko
First Open, Christies, New York, NY
When Artists Say We, Artist Space, New York, NY
This Strangest Of Theatres, Roebling Hall, New York, NY
Artificial Afrika, Gigantic Art Space, New York, NY
From The Living Room, curated by Franklin Sirmans, Art Basel, Miami

Frequency, The Studio Museum In Harlem, New York, NY
Relics and Remnants, Jamaica Center For Arts and Learning
Video Show, Takt Kuntsprojectraum, Berlin, Germany
The Politics Of Care, CUNY Graduate Center, New York, NY
Whitney Museum ISP Open Studio, New York, NY
African Queen, The Studio Museum In Harlem, New York, NY
Shorts Of The Self, Art In General, New York, NY

Harlem Postcards, The Studio Museum In Harlem, New York, NY
re source, Art In General, New York, NY


Visiting Lecturer, Critic, Yale University, New Haven, CT
smARTpower Initiative, U.S. Department of State, Washington, DC  

Artist in Residence, Studio Museum in Harlem,  New York, NY

The Fountainhead Residency, Miami, FL
Residency, Center For Contemporary Art (Futura), Prague

Emergency Grant, Foundation For Contemporary Arts, New York, NY
Art Matters Fellowship, Art Matters, NY, NY

The David C. Driskell Prize, The High Museum Atlanta, Atlanta, GA
Artist In Residence, Light Work, Syracuse New York
In The Public Realm, The Public Art Fund, NY, NY
Artist In Residence, Art Omi, Ghent, NY
Urban Artist Initiative, UAI, NY, NY

The New York Community Trust Fellowship
Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant
Workspace Residency, The Lower Manhattan Cultural Council

Artist-In-Residence, The Center For Photography At Woodstock
New Commissions, Art In General, New York, NY

Acadia Summer Art Program (Kippy Kamp), Acadia, ME
Artist In Residence, Jamaica Center For Arts and Learning, Jamaica, NY
Creative Capital/Aljira: Emerge 7, Newark, NJ
VKP Artist/Educator, The New Museum Of Contemporary Art, New York, NY

Cave Canem Poets Fellow, New York, NY


Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago
Guggenheim New York, New York
MoCA, Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami
The High Museum of Art, Atlanta
The Nasher Museum of Art, Duke University
The Rubell Family Collection, Miami
Perez Art Museum Miami
The Studio Museum in Harlem
The Agnes Gund Art Collection
Deutsche Bank

Recent Exhibits

Xaviera Simmons participated in these exhibits:

Jun, 2015 When You Cut Into the Present the Future Leaks Out
The Old Bronx Borough Courthouse
May, 2015 Frieze New York 2015 - Sounds
Frieze New York
Nov, 2014 Something Beautiful
Marianne Boesky Gallery 64th Street
Oct, 2014 Crossing Brooklyn
Brooklyn Museum of Art
Sep, 2014 Amerika
David Castillo
Aug, 2014 When the Stars Begin to Fall: Imagination and the American South
Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale
Click here to see all exhibits for Xaviera Simmons
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