Artist’s Statement
My life experiences play an integral part in the development of my work. A master welder, I work in three dimensions as well as on paper, on the floor, on walls, and suspended from the ceiling, indoors and outdoors. I create steel sculptures, video, and photography. My work combines poetry, patterns, forms and African themes that engage in social discourse.
I have a 35 year relationship with Africa, especially with Mali. Since my 1995 Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship, I have spent several months every year in Mali engaged in a wide variety of cultural projects including collaborations with Malian artists. I have researched my own Eastern European Jewish genealogy for many years and been an activist for as long as I can remember. My work combines energy, abstract and classical forms and ideas as well as ages old motifs and skills. It records and reflects human scale, labor, body ornaments, utensils, community and traditions as well as the new. It is quiet and open at the same time. My work achieves a unique cohesion where themes recur and overlap, appear and disap- pear, then reappear in altered form. The interplay of texture and pattern combines with an off-kilter geometry that gives my work a special immediacy and excitement. My sculptures thrive on small tensions between light and shadow, positive and negative, organic and precise, playful and serious, political and personal.
I create my often-poetic steel sculptures using a welding torch as a drawing instrument, cutting images and sometimes text into them.

Over 30 years as an active artist, Janet Goldner has shown her work throughout the US, as well as in Lithuania, Germany, Italy, Bosnia, Australia, New Zealand, and Mali. Highlights include The Global Africa Project at the Museum of Arts and Design (2010-11) and Women Facing AIDS at the New Museum (1989) as well as Have We Met?, a major installation at Colgate University ( 2007). Goldner’s wall installation, Negelan is in the permanent collection of the American Embassy in Mali. Permanent public sculptures include Most of Us Are Immigrants at the Islip Museum on Long Island and Granary in the city of Segou, Mali in collaboration with Segou artists.

Goldner is the recipient of numerous awards, grants, and artist residencies, including a Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship to Mali in 1994-5 and a grant from the UN Special Committee Against Apartheid. She is currently a Fulbright Senior Specialist.

Ms Goldner has a thirty-five year relationship with Africa, especially with Mali. Since her Fulbright Fellowship, she has spent several months every year engaged in a wide variety of cultural projects.

Artist’s Statement
An artist-scholar, she has curated exhibitions, published articles and catalogs, and lectured at conferences, universities, and community venues. Recently published is her chapter in Contemporary African Fashion published by Indiana University Press and an essay published in Poetics of Cloth, the catalogue for the exhibition of the same name shown at NYU.

Goldner received a BA from Antioch College and an MA from NYU. She participated in Arlene Raven’s writing workshop, participated in Forum ‘85, the UN Women’s Conference in Kenya and interned with Nancy Graves.

Most of Us Are Immigrants combines language and objects to make concep- tually-based public art that takes the whole city as its site.
Roberta Smith, The NY Times, August 8, 1997

Janet Goldner, of New York, spends much time in Mali. She makes free- standing steel sculptures and wall-bound installations that reference her artistic lineage going back to the welded sculpture of Julio Gonzalez. But the work also displays her social consciousness and her deep continuing interest in African art. Carl Hazlewood, curator, July 2011

Paula M. Mayo: President & Executive Director

Frank DeGregorie, Curator

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