Marie Watt (b. 1967) is an American artist. Her work draws from history, biography, protofeminism, and Indigenous principles, and addresses the interaction of the arc of history with the intimacy of memory. She uses materials that are conceptually attached to narrative: in particular, exploring the stories connected with commonplace woolen blankets, cedar, and iron.

Studio news

Photograph by Aaron Johanson

New work unveiled at Northwestern University's Block Museum of Art

I’m in Evanston, IL, where on Thursday night at 6 p.m., we’ll unveil Companion Species: Ferocious Mother and Canis Familiaris, a piece commissioned by The Block Museum of Art for If You Remember, I’ll Remember, an exhibition curated by Janet Dees of works that explore “themes of love, mourning, war, relocation, internment, resistance, and civil rights in 19th and 20th century North America.” The show includes works by Kristine Aono, Shan Goshorn, Samantha Hill, McCallum & Tarry, and Dario Robleto. I am honored to have been included, and it’s always wonderful to work with Janet.

Companion Species was sewn in community at two sewing circles held at the Block in February of 2017. The turnout at these events was such—over 200 participants—that the final piece ended up significantly larger than planned. My thanks to all who helped: I hope to see all of you on Thursday.

Photograph by Aaron Johanson

VoCA Talks in Denver; Denver Art Museum acquires Butterfly

I’m in Denver this week: this evening, I’m talking with artist and oral historian James McElhinney as part of Voices in Contemporary Art’s VoCA Talks program.

The program is being held at the Denver Art Museum’s Sharp Auditorium at 6:00 p.m. and is free and open to the public; if you’re in the Denver area, come by and say hello.

I’m also delighted to announce that DAM has acquired Butterfly, one of the pieces we made for SITE Santa Fe’s Unsuspected Possibilities show last year. I love this piece and can’t think of a better home for it. Many thanks to DAM (especially Chief Curator and Curator of Native Arts Nancy Blomberg and Associate Curator John Lukavic) and to PDX Contemporary Art for making it happen.

Recent work

Photograph by Aaron Johanson

Companion Species (Listening), 2017

Companion Species (Listening),
10.5 × 35.75 in.
Reclaimed wool blanket, embroidery floss
Photograph by Aaron Johanson

My mom says we have have two ears and one mouth because the Creator intended us to listen twice as hard. I’ve always thought this piece of indigenous knowledge is important. Listening is hard, and something that requires continued work. In this particular image, the subjects are listening to one another and to the environment around them.

Photograph by Aaron Johanson

Companion Species (Cosmos), 2017

Companion Species (Cosmos),
31 × 37 in.
Reclaimed wool blanket, 24-karat gold-wrapped silk thread, embroidery floss, thread
Photograph by Aaron Johanson