For over thirty years Catherine Wagner has been observing the built environment as a metaphor for how we construct our cultural identities. She has examined institutions as varied as art museums, science labs, the home, and Disneyland.
Ms. Wagner’s process involves the investigation of what art critic David Bonetti calls “the systems people create, our love of order, our ambition to shape the world, the value we place on knowledge, and the tokens we display to express ourselves.”
While Ms. Wagner has spent her life residing in California, she has also been an active international artist, working photographically as well as with site-specific public art, lecturing extensively at museums and universities.
She has received many major awards, including the Rome Prize (2013-14), a Guggenheim Fellowship, NEA Fellowships, and the Ferguson Award. In 2001, Ms. Wagner was named one of Time Magazine’s Fine Arts Innovators of the Year. Her work is represented in major collections nationally and around the world, including the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, SFMOMA, The Whitney Museum of American Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. She has also published several monographs, including American Classroom, Art & Science: Investigating Matter, and Cross Sections.