Nari Ward (born 1963) is a Jamaican-born artist currently living and working in New York. Ward received his BA from Hunter College, CUNY and later received his MFA from Brooklyn College, CUNY. His installation artwork incorporates found objects and materials collected from his urban neighborhood in New York, which hint at Ward’s personal immigration story. Ward also explores themes of poverty, race, and consumer culture, highlighting the emotional world of lost and found objects. He has explored the meaning of citizenship with installations of shoelaces that form the first three words of the United States Constitution, and has addressed essential feeling of hopelessness, faith, and government failure in a moving installation housed within a New Orleans church in the wake of the Hurricane Katrina aftermath.
Moving, symbolic, and sometimes subtle, Ward’s work has been displayed in solo and group exhibitions at the Whitney Museum, the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Institute of Visual Arts in Milwaukee, the Guggenheim Museum, the Lehmann Maupin Gallery, and many more. His work has also been widely exhibited internationally, and Ward is currently completing a fellowship in Rome, Italy. He is the recipient of the 2012-2013 Rome Prize, awarded by the American Academy in Rome. He has also received awards from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, and the Pollock Krasner Foundation.