Marie Watt is a multidisciplinary artist who lives and works in Portland, OR. Born to the son of Wyoming ranchers and a daughter of the Turtle Clan of the Seneca Nation (Iroquois/Haudenosaunee) Watt identifies herself as "half Cowboy and half Indian." Formally, her work draws from Indigenous design principles, oral tradition, personal experience and Western art history. Her approach to art-making is shaped by the protofeminism of Iroquois matrilineal custom, political work by Native artists in the 60s, a discourse on multiculturalism, as well as Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art. Like Jasper Johns, she is interested in "things that the mind already knows." Unlike the Pop artists, she uses a vocabulary of natural materials (stone, cornhusks, wool, cedar) and forms (blankets, pillows, bridges) that are universal to human experience (though not uniquely American) and noncommercial in character.
Staff: Custodian, 2007
Courtesy PDX Contemporary, Portland
Main Exhibition Site