Clarice Smith Distinguished Lectures in American Art
William T. Wiley
What's It All Mean
September 30, 2009, 7 p.m.
For over fifty years, William T. Wiley has created a distinctive body of work that embraces popular culture as well as fine art. He is best known as a leading California artist whose importance in the San Francisco Bay Area is well established. Art, politics, war, global warming, and foolishness and ambition, love and anger are summoned by Wiley's fertile imagination
and recorded in the personal vocabulary of symbols, puns, and images that crowd his objects. His work demands close attention, but his wit and sense of the absurd make it accessible even to those who do not immediately discern the ambiguous allusions and layers of meaning. Wiley seeks to engage us in the exploration in which he him self engages to create his art. On October 2, the
Smithsonian American Art Museum will open What's It All Mean: William T. Wiley in Retrospect, the first fullscale look at Wiley's art since 1979.
View archived webcast of William T. Wiley's lecture.