Faith Ringgold

2017 Visionary Award Recipient

Faith Ringgold, born 1930 in Harlem, New York, is a painter, mixed media sculptor, performance artist, writer, teacher and lecturer. She received her B.S. and M.A. degrees in visual art from the City College of New York in 1955 and 1959, and is best known for her narrative quilts (i.e., paintings that she quilts), which represent the development of craft into fine art. 

She is a master of many media, including sculpture and books. Her first book, Tar Beach, was based on a quilt with the same title. Written for children of all ages, this book has won over thirty awards including the coveted Caldecott Honor and the Coretta Scott King award. She has been an art educator both in public schools and in higher education. Her work weaves compelling, powerful stories of American life as seen through the lens of the African American female experience.

Ringgold’s work has been exhibited in museums and galleries around the world including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the Smithsonian American Art Museum. She is the recipient of more than 75 awards, notably the National Endowment of the Arts award for sculpture, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation fellowship for painting and the National Endowment of the Arts Award for painting. She is a Professor Emeritus of Art at the University of California in San Diego and has received 23 Honorary Doctorates.

Rago is privileged to participate in this exceptional event, celebrating these visionary artists and supporting one of our nation’s most important cultural institutions.

Suzanne Perrault

The Smithsonian Visionary Benefit Auction

Works Sold to Benefit The Smithsonian Institution

Rago is pleased to present The Smithsonian Visionary Benefit Auction within our Modern Design sale. This special section features items created by past and present Smithsonian Visionary Artists, all sold to benefit the Smithsonian Institution.

The Visionary Award, established in 2014, is presented annually to artists who are deemed by curators in the field to have risen to the pinnacle in the world of sculptural arts and design, who have works in major museums, and who have demonstrated distinction, creativity, artistry, and of course, vision in his or her respective medium.

Patti Warashina, the 2020 recipient of the Visionary Award, joins the small but prestigious list of past recipients: Joyce J. Scott, Faith Ringgold, Dale Chihuly, Toots Zynsky, Wendell Castle and Albert Paley. 

All lots in the Visionary Benefit Auction are of the primary market, unless otherwise indicated. They are being sold with all proceeds going to the Smithsonian Institution and will be shipped directly from the artist or the gallery. Rago is waiving the buyer's premium on each of these works.