Xaviera Simmons was born in New York in 1974 and currently lives and works in Brooklyn. She earned her B.F.A. in photography from Bard College in 2004 and completed the Whitney Museum Independent Study Program in 2005. She was the 2008 winner of The David C. Driskell Prize.

Simmons' solo exhibitions include Xaviera Simmons: Untitled, Context Gallery, Derry, U.K. (2009); Perspectives 157: Xaviera Simmons, Electric Relaxation, Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston (2007); The Hustle Never Stops in Lagos, Santa Barbara Contemporary Arts Forum (2007); Landscape: Expanded Engagement, Extended Space, Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning, New York (2006); and How to Break Your Own Heart, Art in General, New York (2006).

Group exhibitions include The Reach of Realism, Museum of Contemporary Art, North Miami (2009); Incheon Biennial, Korea (2009); 30 Americans, Rubell Family Collection, Miami (2008); Street Art, Street Life, Bronx Museum of the Arts (2008); Cinema Remixed and Reloaded: Black Women Artists and the Moving Image Since 1970, Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston (2008); T.error: Your Fear Is an External Object, Múcsarnok Kunsthalle, Budapest (2008); Black Alphabet Contexts of Contemporary African American Art, Zacheta National Art Gallery, Warsaw, Poland (2006); and Frequency, Studio Museum in Harlem (2005).

Cover to Cover

For many people, record sleeves have the capacity to trigger memories and convey emotion in the most personal way, making them significant not only as tangible objects, but for some, as a first site of direct engagement with visual art. With this in mind, 10 artists - six individuals and two duos - were asked to create a conceptual artwork by selecting twenty LP records based on the album-cover visuals. In the "Cover to Cover" installation, eight crates containing the eight groups of albums create an interactive work of art that visitors can thumb through and play on nearby turntables. The artists were asked to deliver the records to the museum, making these not rare-album wish lists but works created by making selections from what was readily available. Thus, through their choices, each artist communicates a message or tells a visual story that speaks to the unique expressive impact of the 12-inch album cover.

Photo of Xaviera Simmons by Chris Sanders.