Since the 1960s, Barbara T. Smith (b. 1931 in Pasadena) has been at the forefront of artistic movements in California. Her work explores concepts that strike at the core of human nature, including sexuality, physical and spiritual sustenance, technology, and death. This autobiographical exhibition is told in Smith's voice and coincides with the Getty’s publication of her memoir. It explores the artist’s first 50 years, which were marked by dramatic upheavals in her personal life as well as the development of her most pioneering works, including her Xerox art and radical early performances.
Supported by the Danielson Foundation and the Pasadena Art Alliance
This exhibition is presented in English and Spanish.
Esta exhibición se presenta en inglés y en español.
Women Artists Experiment with Xerox
May 6, 2023
June 10, 2023
July 8, 2023
The Way to Be: A Memoir
Barbara T. Smith
Songs that define key moments of Smith's artistic career
The Xerox Machine in the Dining Room
How Smith fell in love with a photocopier
Press Release: Artist Barbara T. Smith at the Getty Research Institute
The exhibition and memoir explore the artist's first 50 years
The Way To Be: Barbara T. Smith's Art of Transformation
From a traditional Pasadena housewife to one of the most radical artists of her time, Smith narrates her extraordinary life in this documentary short.
Barbara T. Smith performances playlist on YouTube
Exhibition checklist (English and Spanish)
Complete gallery wall texts (English and Spanish)
Wednesdays at 2:00 p.m.
March 1–July 12, 2023
(Note: No tours on May 3 and May 10)
Tour capacity may be limited.
Explore this exhibition with a free audio tour—as told by Barbara T. Smith. Available in English and Spanish.
Audio transcript available in English and Spanish