Pat Boas, Sentinels (shield), 2020
Lectures & Talks, Exhibition Tours & Events


Hosted by Courtney Gilbert

Monday, January 11, 2021 - 6:00 PM

Join SVMoA’s Curator of Visual Arts, Courtney Gilbert, for a conversation with Pat Boas about her installation project for Deeds Not Words. Boas will discuss research she did on the push for suffrage in Idaho, where women gained the right to vote in 1896, and how it informed her artwork.

About the Artist

Based in Portland, Oregon, Pat Boas investigates language and the act of reading in lyrically abstract works that often allude to words and type. She often finds source material for her work in historical or contemporary events and texts, and recent work includes a series of paintings inspired by the monograms of historical women who have worked for change. SVMoA invited Boas to create a new body of work for this exhibition with a focus on the history of the early push for women’s suffrage in Idaho and across the American West. Following a residency at SVMoA’s Hailey House and research at the Idaho State Archives in Boise, Boas produced an installation for the exhibition that includes new paintings, artist-designed wallpaper and a poster (or “broadside”) featuring a speech given by the well-known suffragist Abigail Scott Duniway in Boise in 1889, which visitors may take with them.

The installation at SVMoA includes five paintings that Boas calls “Sentinels,” a reference to the Silent Sentinels, a group of women the suffragist Alice Paul organized to protest outside the White House starting in January 1917. Despite facing harassment and arrest, the Silent Sentinels maintained their presence in Washington, D.C., until June 1919, when Congress passed the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Boas and Gilbert will discuss the research she did for the project, her process, and the connections between her paintings, the wallpaper she designed and the broadside featuring Abigail Scott Duniway’s speech. Boas will also address the installation within the larger context of her interest in the connection between language and visual form, and the ways that words and direct action work together to promote change.


A BIG IDEA project of Sun Valley Museum of Art

Part of SVMoA’s BIG IDEA project Deeds Not Words: Women Working for Change.
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