Karyn Olivier, born in Trinidad and Tobago, received her M.F.A. at Cranbrook Academy of Art and her B.A at Dartmouth College. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including exhibitions at the Gwangju and Busan Biennials (Korea), World Festival of Black Arts and Culture (Dakar, Senegal), the Wanas Foundation (Sweden), The Studio Museum in Harlem (NY), The Whitney Museum of Art at Altria (NY), MoMA P.S.1 (NY), The Museum of Fine Arts Houston, The Contemporary Arts Museum Houston and the SculptureCenter (NY). She is the recipient of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, the Joan Mitchell Foundation Award, the New York Foundation for the Arts Award, a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant, the William H. Johnson Prize, the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Biennial Award and a Creative Capital Foundation grant. She lives and works in Philadelphia, PA.
Karyn Olivier. Inbound: Houston, Houston, Texas, October 26-November 22, 2009.
Thirteen billboard advertisements on Houston’s freeways as photographic representations of the landscape that existed directly behind the billboard structures.
Karyn Olivier. It’s not over ’til it’s over, Steel, wood, fabric, rope lighting, motor, casters and chair, h.14 ft. diam. 24 ft.
I built a carousel that rotates clockwise at a rate of five minutes per revolution.
Karyn Olivier. Winter hung to dry, Installation view at the Soap Factory.
My winter clothes and line. Installation, h.7 ft. w.60 ft. d.30 in.
Karyn Olivier, Toilet, Cast concrete, h.18 in. w.22 in. d.60 ft.
Karyn Olivier, Untitled (Coffee Table), Installation view at MoMA PS1.
Coffee table, foam board and latex paint, h.13 ft. w.50 in. d.23 in.
Karyn Olivier, ACA Foods Free Library, Hartford, CT. March 2009-10.
I installed a functioning library inside ACA Foods market, a West Indian grocery store. This exclusively Caribbean library was open to all patrons of the market. The books were organized by category (i.e. region, history, children) and arranged on shelves alongside the customary products and provisions sold in the store. For example, political titles were found next to hot pepper sauces; Jamaican literature between loaves of hard dough bread (a Jamaican specialty); children’s books nestled between biscuits and cookies. This was a trust library—no library card necessary, no proof of residence required, and no specific date of return. Borrowers were only asked to return the book(s) when they are finished “digesting” them.
Karyn Olivier, Concrete block and clothes, archival print 28 in. x 24 in.
Karyn Olivier, Wonderwheel cemetery, archival digital print collage, 40 in. x 26 in.
Karyn Olivier, Favelas and 2x4, (From the series “Double Vision”), archival digital print collage. 3.75 in. x 5.75 in.
Karyn Olivier, Doubleslide, View at The Studio Museum in Harlem, Steel, h.7 ft. w.25 ft. d.22 in.
Karyn Olivier, Ridgewood Line (BQT Ghost No. 6064), Overview. Steel, cable, cement and wood. Installation, h.10 ft. w. 6.5 ft. d. 45 ft.
Using the SculptureCenter building’s history as a trolley repair shop, I fabricated a concrete “street” with embedded trolley tracks. Above, one saw the cable lines that follow the path of the tracks. Just past the midway point, a fabricated sewer grate is seen below.
Karyn Olivier, Fruit barricade, Mexico City, Mexico.
I positioned a pre-existing jersey barrier on the pedestrian sidewalk directly in front of a gallery. Each morning I filled the barricade ledge with fruit from the local market.