With Drawn Arms: Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith

  • Thirty five pieces of rectangular, multi-colored paper posted on a wall with the word UNITE printed on them. Several have a man with his head lowered while raising his arm and fist high.

    Installation view of With Drawn Arms: Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith, San José Museum of Art, California, 2019. Photos by JKA Photography.

  • Next to a gallery entrance, a wall reads "With Drawn Arms by Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith." On the left 3 athletes receive awards while 2 of them hold their arms and fists high. In the gallery is a wave-like object which looks to be made of wooden slats.
  • A large gallery filled with a huge structure hanging in mid-air by string-like chords. The sculpture has a lot of movement and looks a bit like a bending spine or a snake moving. It appears to be made of wooden slats.
  • A large wavy sculpture hanging from the ceiling by heavy chords which are holding the beams or slats of the structure. Each beam looks like a strong arm with a closed fist on both sides of the beam.
  • A large gallery with a sculpture hanging low from the ceiling that looks like a long moving snake-like figure.
  • A gallery with a bench in the middle, artwork neatly placed on three walls and a sculpture of a man's silhouette standing at the back of the gallery with his arm raised high.
  • A large, shiny golden colored sculpture, akin to a platform for awards ceremonies with three winners. The golden sculpture reflects the wooden floor of the gallery. Behind the sculpture are four paintings, two on each side.
  • Two display cases with pictures inside on one wall with a separate picture next to it. On another wall is a picture of the Olympic Rings and in the center of the gallery are two side-by-side standing display cases with many different items in each case.
  • Two large clear display cases on a wall showing pictures of athletes, medals, and athletes running. Each box contains eight pictures of various sizes different frames, arranged sporadically.

    In 1968, at the Summer Olympic Games in Mexico City, San José State University runner Tommie Smith raised a gloved fist during the medal ceremony to protest human rights abuses around the world, and to bring international attention to the struggle for civil rights in the United States. This act of protest, which still reverberates today, is explored in a series of collaborations between Smith and Los Angeles–based conceptual artist Glenn Kaino. The exhibition includes monumental sculpture, print-based projects, and memorabilia from Smith’s personal collection that reflect his time as an athlete and civil rights activist.

    With Drawn Arms: Glenn Kaino and Tommie Smith is sponsored by the San José Museum of Art's Exhibitions Fund with generous grants from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Applied Materials Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts, and contributions from McManis Faulkner, Tad Freese and Brook Hartzell, and Tech CU.

    Programs at the San José Museum of Art are made possible by generous support from the Museum's Board of Trustees, a Cultural Affairs Grant from the City of San José, the Lipman Family Foundation, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, Facebook Art Department, the Richard A. Karp Charitable Foundation, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, Yellow Chair Foundation, the SJMA Director's Council and Council of 100, the San José Museum of Art Endowment Fund established by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation at the Silicon Valley Community Foundation, and The William Randolph Hearst Foundation.

    Raise Your Fist For... | Visitor Interpretations

    San José Public Library Booklist for With Drawn Arms


    New edgier exhibitions find Bay Area museums confronting the world, Mercury News
    September 9, 2019

    Olympian Tommie Smith Revisits the Art of Protest, Vanity Fair
    October 31, 2019

    Tommie Smith, John Carlos Inducted into Hall of Fame, NBC Bay Area
    November 1, 2019