Rosemary Mayer (Estate)

Rosemary Mayer (Estate)

Rosemary Mayer (1943–2014) was a prolific artist involved in the New York art scene beginning in the late 1960s. Most well-known for her large-scale sculptures using fabric as a primary material, she also created works on paper, artist books, and outdoor installations, exploring themes of temporality, history, and biography. A pioneer of the feminist art movement, she was a founding member of A.I.R. Gallery—the first cooperative gallery for women in the US—where she presented one of her earliest exhibitions. During the 1970s and 1980s, her work was also shown at many New York alternative art spaces, including Clocktower Gallery, SculptureCenter, and Franklin Furnace, and in university galleries throughout the country.

Mayer’s first institutional retrospective, Rosemary Mayer: Ways of Attaching, was organized  and presented at four institutions: Swiss Institute, New York (2021); Ludwig Forum, Aachen, Germany (2022); Lenbachhaus, Munich, Germany (2022); and Spike Island, Bristol, UK (2022). Two books were published on the occasion of the exhibition: a catalogue featuring new essays and scholarly contributions on Mayer’s practice, and a book of correspondence between Mayer and her sister, Bernadette Mayer, The Letters of Rosemary and Bernadette Mayer, 1976–1980.

Additional publications include Temporary Monuments: Work by Rosemary Mayer, 1977–1982 (2018), which focused on her ephemeral installations, and the second edition of Excerpts from the 1971 Journal of Rosemary Mayer (2018), both published by Soberscove Press.

Solo presentations of Mayer’s work include: Gordon Robichaux, New York (2021); ChertLüdde, Berlin (2022); Lamar Dodd School of Art, University of Georgia, Athens (2017); SOUTHFIRST, Brooklyn, New York (2016); LaGuardia Community College, New York (2010); Resnick Gallery, Long Island University, Brooklyn, New York (2005); Salena Gallery, Long Island University, Brooklyn, New York (1993); Pam Adler Gallery, New York (1985); The Women’s Interart Center, Inc., New York (1982 and 1980); Hobbs House, Lansing, New York (1982); A & M Artworks, New York (1982); Minneapolis College of Art and Design (1981); The Art Gallery, Malott Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York (1981); Lenox Library Garden, Massachusetts (1979); 55 Mercer Street Gallery and 461 Park Avenue South Gallery, New York (1979); State University of New York, Stony Brook (1978); University of Massachusetts, Amherst (1978); Monique Knowlton Gallery, New York (1976); Whitney Museum of American Art Resources Center, New York (1975); and A.I.R. Gallery, New York (1975).

Mayer’s work has also been included in numerous group exhibitions, notably at Amant, New York; Mitchell Algus Gallery, New York; Murray Guy, New York; Nicelle Beauchene Gallery, New York; Bridget Donahue, New York; Parker Gallery, Los Angeles; and Kunsthalle Basel (curated by Nick Mauss), Switzerland.

Reviews and profiles on the artist have been published in The New York TimesThe New Yorker, Hyperallergic, Art in America, the Brooklyn Rail, The Nation, Art Papers, Artforum, Texte zur Kunst, Frieze, and Mousse.

Mayer’s work is held in the collections of Lenbachhaus, Munich; coleção moraes-barbosa, São Paulo; and the Museum of Modern Art, New York.


17th Street Ghost

glassine, cellophane, plastic, wood, paint, ribbons, cord, and linen thread

81 × 105 × 84 inches


Scarecrow (model) for a field

Wood, fabric, linen thread, string, ribbons, and fiberglass

42 × 36 × 40 inches



Colored pencil, graphite, charcoal on paper

20 × 26 inches


Fabrics, Balloons, Ribbons from the Upper Windows for a Celebration in a Windy Season

Colored pencil, graphite, ink, and pastel on paper

26 × 40 inches; 28.75 × 42.75 inches (framed)


Some Days in April

Colored pencil, graphite, ink, and watercolor on paper

26 × 40 inches; 28.75 × 42.75 inches (framed)


Preparing the 4th of July Balloon for 1979

Colored pencil, graphite, ink, and pastel on paper

17.5 × 14.5 inches; 20.5 × 17.5 inches (framed)



Rosemary Mayer

Pleasures and Possible Celebrations: Rosemary Mayer’s Temporary Monuments, 1977–1981

May 2–June 27, 2021

A Page From My Intimate Journal (Part II) —

Wilder Alison, Leilah Babirye, Matt Connors, Jenni Crain, Stephanie Crawford, Florence Derive, DW Fitzpatrick, Gillian Garcia, Daniel Marcellus Givens, Janice Guy, Otis Houston Jr., Miles Huston, KIOSK, Marco ter Haar Romeny, Clifford Prince King, Elisabeth Kley, Wayne Koestenbaum, Siobhan Liddell, Rosemary Mayer, McDermott & McGough, Reverend Joyce McDonald, Matt Paweski, Signe Olson, Sanou Oumar, Kerry Schuss, Dean Spunt, Tabboo!, Ken Tisa, Boris Torres, Frederick Weston

Mar. 1–Apr. 19, 2020


That '70s Show: Rosemary Mayer

May 18–May 21, 2023


Rosemary Mayer, Beware of All Definitions, Selected Works 1966-1973


Lamar Dodd School of Art, University of Georgia

Rosemary Mayer, Temporary Monuments: Work by Rosemary Mayer, 1977-1982


Soberscove Press

Rosemary Mayer, The Letters of Rosemary & Bernadette Mayer, 1976–1980


Lenbachhaus, Ludwig Forum, Spike Island and Swiss Institute

Rosemary Mayer, Excerpts from the 1971 Journal of Rosemary Mayer


Soberscove Press

Rosemary Mayer, Ways of Attaching


König, Lenbachhaus, Ludwig Forum, Spike Island, Swiss Institute


a b c d
g h i
o r
Gordon Robichaux