Native American painter and educator Kay WalkingStick was born on 2 March 1935 in Syracuse, New York. She is enrolled in the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and is also of Scotch-Irish and Ho-Chunk descent. She earned her BFA from Beaver College (now Arcadia University) in Glenside, Pennsylvania (1959) and her MFA from the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York (1975). WalkingStick works with oils primarily, but also acrylic, watercolor, mixed media, encaustic, copper, charcoal, and gold leaf. She was a Professor at the Department of Fine Art, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, from 1988-2005. She has received the following honors and awards: Danforth Foundation, Graduate Fellowship for Women to attend Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY (1973); National Endowment for the Arts, Visual Artist Fellowship in Painting, Washington, DC (1983); Richard A. Florsheim Art Fund Award, Tampa, FL (1991); Residency, Rockefeller Conference and Study Center, Bellagio, Italy (1992); New York State Council on the Arts - NYSCA grant in painting, NY (1992); Joan Mitchell Foundation Award in Painting (1995); Honoree, Women's Caucus for Art, 1996 National Honor Award for Achievement in the Arts, Boston, MA (1996); Distinguished Artist Award, Eiteljorg Fellowship for Native American Fine Artists, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Indianapolis, IN (2003); National Association of Women Artists, Honorary Vice President, Manhattan, NY (2008).
Kay WalkingStick presented the following personal exhibitions: Cannabis Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1969); Peter Tilgner & Kay Walkingstick , New Jersey State Museum, Trenton, NJ (1975); Soho Center for the Visual Arts, Manhattan, NY (1976); Bertha Urdang Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1979); Wenger Gallery, San Diego, CA (1979); Painting on Paper, Bertha Urdang Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1981); Wenger Gallery at the Fine Arts Building, San Diego, CA (1984); Bertha Urdang Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1984); Fort Lewis College, Fine Arts Gallery, Durango, CO (1984); Carl N. Gorman Museum, University of California, Davis, CA (1985); Ohio State University, Hopkins Hall Gallery, Columbus, OH, Visiting Artist Exhibit (1985); Beaver College, Spruance Art Gallery, Glenside, PA (1985); Galleria Maray, Englewood, NJ (1986); M-13 Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1987); Wenger Gallery, Los Angeles, CA (1988); Union College, Cranford, NJ (1989); Rathbone Gallery, Junior College of Albany, Albany, NY (1990); M-13 Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1990); Kay WalkingStick: 1974-1990, Hillwood Art Museum, C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, Brookville, NY / Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ / Hartwick College Gallery, Hartwick College, Oneonta, NY (1991); Elaine Horwitch Gallery, Scotsdale, AZ (1991); Works on Paper, Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ / Jersey City Museum, Jersey City, NJ (1992); Hartell Gallery, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY (1993); Flushing Council on the Arts, Flushing, NY (1993); Galerie Calumet, Heidelberg, Germany (1993); Recent Paintings, June Kelly Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1994); Works on Paper, Atlantic Center for the Arts, New Smyrna Beach, FL (1995); Recent Drawings / The Italian Suite, June Kelly Gallery, Manhattan, NY (1999); The Heritage of our Ancestor: Jaune Quick-to-See Smith & Kay WalkingStick, Bayly Art Museum, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA (1999); Kay WalkingStick, Miami-Dade Community College Kendall Campus, Miami, FL (1999); Haptic Memory, June Kelly Gallery, Manhattan, NY (2002); Continuum, National Museum of the American Indian, George Gustav Heye Center, Smithsonian Institution, New York (2003); Sensual Texture: The Art of Kay WalkingStick, Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians & Western Art, Indianapolis, IN (2003); Kay WalkingStick: Mythic Dances - Paintings from Four Decades, Southeast Missouri Regional Museum, Cape Girardeau, MO (2004); Kay WalkingStick - Paintings, June Kelly Gallery, Manhattan, NY (2007); American Abstraction: Dialogue with the Cosmos, Montclair Museum of Art, Montclair, NJ (2008); Kay WalkingStick: Works on Paper 1979-2009, Lafayette College Grossman Gallery, Easton, PA (2009). § She also took part in the following group exhibitions: Contemporary Reflections 1974-1975, Aldrich Museum, Ridgefield, CT (1975); Marking Black, Bronx Museum, Bronx, NY (1980); Dark Thoughts, Black Paintings, Pratt Manhattan Center, NY (1981); Tribute to Bertha Urdang, Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel (1982); Terminal Show, Brooklyn Terminal, Brooklyn, NY (1983); Second Biennial Invitational, Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ (1985); 39 th Annual Purchase Exhibition, American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, , NY (1987); We the People, Artists Space, NY (1987); 40 th Annual Purchase Exhibition, American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, NY (1988); 100 Women Artists' Drawings, United States Information Agency, traveled in South America (1989); The Decade Show, Framework of Identity in the 1980s, The New Museum, Studio Museum, MOCHA, New Museum, NY (1990); Shared Visions, Native American Painters and Sculptors of the 20 th Century, Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ (1991); Land, Spirit, Power, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, ON, Canada (1992); Multiplicity: A New Cultural Strategy, Museum of Anthropology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada (1993); Strategies of Narration, Cairo Biennial, USIA Exhibit, Cairo, Egypt (1994); Retreat and Renewal: Painting and Sculpture by MacDowell Art Colonists, Currier Gallery of Art, Manchester, NH (1996); Honorees of W.C.A., Rose Art Museum at Brandeis University, Boston, MA (1996); Native Abstraction: Modern Forms, Ancient Ideas, Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, Santa Fe, NM (1997); Waxing Poetic: Encaustic Art in America, Montclair Art Museum, Montclair, NJ (1999); Ceremonial, Scuola dei Tiraoro e dei Battioro, Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy (1999); End Papers, Drawings 1890-1900, 1990-2000, Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY (2000); National Drawing Invitational, Arts Center, Rockefeller Gallery, Little Rock, AR (2001); In Search of the Dream: The American West, Bruce Museum of Arts and Science, Greenwich, CT (2002); Creative Space: Fifty Years of Robert Blackburn's Printmaking Workshop, Library of Congress, Washington, DC (2003); Skowhegan Faculty Exhibition, Institute of Contemporary Art, Maine College of Art, Portland, ME (2003); Pathbreakers, Eiteljorg Mus. of Amer. Indians & Western Art, Indianapolis, IN (2003); Hearing Voices: Personal Narratives, Bristol, Myers, Squibb, Manhattan, NY (2004); Cross Currents in the Mainstream, Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ (2004); Master Artist, Master Printmaker Portfolio, Heights Arts Contemporary Community Gallery, Cleveland, OH (2004); Native Views: Influences of Modern Culture, Artrain, Tempe, AZ (2004-2007); About Face: Self Portraits By Native American and First Nations Artists, Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian, Santa Fe, NM (2005); Agents of Change: Women, Art & Intellect, Ceres Gallery, Manhattan, NY (2007); From the Inside Out: Feminist Art Then & Now, St. John's University, Dr. M.T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery, Queens, NY (2007); Post Identity, Nicole Fiacco Gallery, Hudson, NY (2007); Native Voices: Contemporary Indigenous Art, Kentler International Drawing Space, Brooklyn, NY (2008); Timeless: The Art of Drawing, Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ (2008); Facing West, Landfall Press, Santa Fe, NM (2008); New Directions: Nathan Hart + Sarah Sense + Kay WalkingStick, Heard Museum Shop, Berlin Gallery, Phoenix, AZ (2009); Personal Paradise: Contemporary Perspectives on Landscape Painting, Colorado Springs Fine Arts Center, El Pomar Galleries, Colorado Springs, CO (2009); The Figure and Space, An Intimate Relationship, Gallery Ami & Kanono, Osaka, Japan (2009).
Artworks by Kay WalkingStick are kept at the following collections: Albright-Knox Museum, Buffalo, NY; The American College of Greece - ACG Art, Athens, Greece; Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Pittsburgh, PA; Arkansas Arts Center, Little Rock, AR; AT&T, Morristown, NJ; Best Products, Ashland, VA; Bailey-Howe Library of the University of Vermont, VT; Cameron Art Museum, Wilmington, NC; Cherokee Heritage Foundation, Tahlequah, OK; City University of New York, Shepard Hall, New York,NY; City University of New York, Steinman Hall, Manhattan, NY; College Board Print Collection, Manhattan, NY; Cumberland Family Care Center, Brooklyn, NY; Davidson College, Davidson, NC; Denver Art Museum, Denver, CO; Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI; Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, Indianapolis, IN; Gilcrease Museum, Tulsa, OK; Heard Museum, Phoenix, AZ; Hunter Museum, Chattanooga, TN; Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Israel; Johnson Museum, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY; Johnson & Johnson, Personal Product Division, New Brunswick, NJ; Kresge Museum of Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI; Lake Shore National Bank, Chicago, IL; Lang Communications Print Collection, Manhattan, NY; Library of Congress, Washington, DC; Metropolitan Museum of Art, Manhattan, NY; Montclair Art Musem, Montclair, NJ; Morris Museum, Morristown, NJ; Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego, CA; Nabisco World Headquarters, East Hanover, NJ; National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC; National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Canada; National Museum of the American Indian, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC; Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY; Newark Museum, Newark, NJ; Palmer Museum of Art, Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA; Peat, Marwick, Mitchell, and Co., Montvale, NJ; Pecker and Abramson, P.C., Hackensack, NJ; Pharmacia (formerly Searle), St. Louis, MO; Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA; Poskanzer and Tulp, Fort Lee, NJ; Prudential-Bache, Manhattan, NY; Public Service Electric and Gas Company, Newark, NJ; Robert Hull Fleming Museum, University of VT, Burlington, VT; Rockwell Museum of Western Art, Corning, NY; Rollins College, Roanoke, VA; San Diego Museum of Fine Arts, San Diego, CA; Schering-Plough Corporation, Madison, NJ; Southern Plains Indian Museum, Anadarko, OK; Spencer Museum of Art, Lawrence, KS; Sweet Briar College, Sweet Briar, VA; Texwipe Corporation, Saddle River, NJ; University of Arizona Art Museum, Tucson, AZ; University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Newark, NJ.
Kay WalkingStick currently lives and works in Jackson Heights, New York.