“If I’m working on a quilt that was presumably made by a group of women 100 years ago, there’s something to grapple with in that conversation."
For so long, I waited for the conversation that follows. I started in Columbia University’s MFA Visual Arts program in 2016. It happened to be when Sanford Biggers was beginning to leave his position as an educator. The celebrated artist—and the 2017–18 recipient of the prestigious Rome Prize—was taken by the demands of his ever-expanding practice. I remember sitting in an administrative office in that school, mystified by a small silk screen, Lotus (125th) from “The Floating World” (2013).