generic speaker image
Janet Goldner - JG studio. Greater New York City Area, NY, US

Janet Goldner

Artist | JG studio

Greater New York City Area, NY, UNITED STATES

Artist; Cross Cultural & International Consulting; African Arts & Culture Expert








I have a lifelong relationship with Africa, especially with Mali. I received a Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship to Mali in 1994-5 . Since my Fulbright, I have spent several months every year in Mali engaged in a wide variety of cultural research and projects concerning cultural preservation and contemporary art and artists in Mali.

I received a grant from the UN Special Committee Against Apartheid. I am currently a Fulbright Senior Specialist. I have curated exhibitions, published articles and catalogs, and lectured at conferences, universities, and community venues. Recently publications include a chapter in Contemporary African Fashion, Indiana University Press, an essay in Poetics of Cloth, Grey Art Gallery, NYU.

My life experiences play an integral part in the development of my artwork. A master welder, I work in three dimensions as well as on paper, on the floor, on walls, and suspended from the ceiling, indoors and outdoors. My installations include steel sculptures, video, photography and sound. My work combines poetry, patterns, forms and African themes that engage in social discourse.

I have exhibited my work widely throughout the US and internationally. Highlights include The Global Africa Project at the Museum of Arts and Design (2010-11) and Women Facing AIDS at the New Museum (1989) as well as Have We Met?, a major installation at Colgate University (2007). My work is in the permanent collection of the American Embassy in Mali.

Industry Expertise (3)

Travel and Tourism


Fine Art

Areas of Expertise (3)


Adventure Travel

Cultural Heritage

Accomplishments (5)

Fulbright Senior Research Fellowship (professional)


A life-long cultural journey began when I first traveled to West Africa in 1973. I have returned to Africa many times, notably for an eight month residency in Mali as a Fulbright scholar in 1995. During the Fulbright research, I worked with artists and artisans including potters, metal workers and contemporary artists. Since then I have been engaged in an ongoing dialogue with Malian artists and artisans about our lives, our work and our creative process.

United Nations Committee Against Apartheid, Grant (professional)


SOUTH AFRICAN MAIL: MESSAGES FROM INSIDE is an exhibition of 400 unique postcard-sized works reflecting the life circumstances of over 200 South African women of all races. Featured on the PBS program "South African Now" and first shown in February 1990, I curated SOUTH AFRICAN MAIL: MESSAGES FROM INSIDE during the waning days of apartheid. The exhibition is a collaboration between American and South African artists. A catalogue is available.

Ford Foundation Grant: Three Continents Textile Collaboration (professional)


The Three Countries Textile Project brought together artists from Mali, Nigeria and Indonesia for three week workshop to an exchange of ideas, culture and artistic practice. The Nigerians work in adire and batik, the Malians work in bogolan and the Indonesians in batik. All are accomplished artists who have been practicing their art for many years. The project was funded by the Ford Foundation-West Africa, Lagos, Nigeria.I worked as a cultural translator and videographer.

Fulbright Senior Specialist (Mali) (professional)


Taught at Balla Fasseke Kouyate Conservatory of Arts & Multimedia, Bamako, Mali * Inside Out: Writing Workshop for Artists, Participants examine the reasons and context of their artistic production to deepen their understanding of their work.

Fulbright Senior Specialist (Zimbabwe) (professional)


Taught workshops for artists at First Floor Gallery, Harare, Zimbabwe * Inside Out: Writing Workshop for Artists, inspired by the pedagogy of renowned feminist art critic, Arlene Raven. * Collaborative project for artists

Education (4)

Experiment in International Living: Semester program to Ghana 1973

I participated in The Experiment in International Living Program to Ghana in 1973 and spent nearly a year in West Africa, igniting my on-going connection with the continent and West Africa in particular.

New York University: MA, Art 1981

Penland School of Crafts: Weaving, Photography, Glass Blowing 1972

Antioch College: BA, Art 1974

Affiliations (8)

  • Center for Book Arts
  • International Sculpture Center
  • College Art Association
  • American Association of Museums
  • International Documentary Association
  • Arts Council of the African Studies Association (ACASA)
  • MaliWatch
  • MANSA (Mande Studies Association)

Testimonials (1)

Marge Owens, Client | Building Bridges Tours

Traveling in Mali, with Janet Goldner escorting us every step of the way. We had the most interesting trip we ever took. Neither of us understood more than five words of French, but Janet seamlessly translated when needed. We had so many conversations with Janet about the history of Mali (short version), the arts community of Mali, how people make their livings, and the political system, that we now think we know a smattering anyway about West Africa. Since our trip we tend to read anything that comes along that mentions Mali. “It’s a small world” doesn’t begin to sum up how connected we felt with everyone who had put themselves out to make sure we had a comfortable and more than interesting time.

Event Appearances (9)

Transcultural Collaborations: Collapsing Distance, Transforming Home

Dialogues in the Arts Lecture Series  Borough of Manhattan Community College, New York, NY


Artistry of African Blacksmiths: Apprenticing at a Forge in Dioro, Mali

15th Triennial Symposium On African Art  UCLA


Cultural Diplomacy in the Arts

Arts in the One World Conference  Brown University


The Art of the Groupe Bogolan Kasobane

Center for African Studies  Rutgers University


Artist's Lecture

Guest lecture  University of Michigan, Ann Arbor


World Heritage Sites in Mali

The Archaeology Society of Staten Island  College of Staten Island, NY


Global Conversations in the Arts

Guest lecture   University of Missouri/Kansas City


Mali: An Invitation to Travel

African Studies Association Conference  Nashville, TN


UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Mali

The African Section, African and Middle Eastern Division  Library of Congress


Sample Talks (1)

Transcultural Collaborations: Collapsing Distance, Transforming Home

Transculture refers to the act of uniting people from different backgrounds and cultures in an effort to exchange varied perspectives and contexts. An exchange of this sort can potentially yield global/universal similarities and specific cultural differences. It is a way for people to think together while contributing beliefs and strategies from their individual experiences. Careful attention must be paid to power relations in order to maximize the interaction. As the work continues over a long



  • Keynote
  • Moderator
  • Panelist
  • Workshop Leader
  • Corporate Training


500 to 4000