On Their Own Terms is an exhibition curated by students in the Scribner Seminar “Outsiders? Folk and Self-Taught Artists in the United States” which presents works by a selection of nineteenth- and twentieth-century artists from the United States who have been variously categorized as “self-taught,” “outsider,” “folk,” or “visionary,” among other labels. Objects range in form and medium and include textiles, sculptures, relief carvings, paintings, and drawings. The exhibition aims to present the visual art and lives of these artists while also interrogating the ways that curators, dealers, and scholars have exhibited, acquired, and sometimes overlooked this important work. Although a diverse group of artists, most of them began to create work late in life, received no formal training, and share a decisive commitment to what and why they wanted to create.
On Their Own Terms is the culminating project for the“Outsiders? Folk and Self-Taught Artists in the United States,” class. The class is taught by Nancy Thebaut, Assistant Professor of Art History, Skidmore College, and the student co-curators of the exhibition are Max Comora, Ella Copelotti, Paulina Dunn, Chiara Garcia-Ugarte, Izzy Jones, Lily Josephs, Gabe Koff, Dinah Luomanen, Cameron Mitchell, Benedict Nguyen, Lucien Rosado-Soto, Adam Sherif, Erys Smith, Tim Therrien, Kevin Xue and Peer Mentor Paige Meade.