Helen Evans Ramsaran (b. 1943) was born in Bryan, Texas. In 1965, Ramsaran received a Bachelor of Science degree in Art Education and a Masters of Fine Art in Sculpture from Ohio State University in 1968.
From 1970-73, she was an instructor at Bowie State College, Bowie, Maryland. In 1978, Ramsaran was a visiting artist at Johnson Atelier Technical Institute of Sculpture in Princeton, New Jersey. She retired as an Associate Professor of Art at John Jay College of the City University of New York.
Ramsaran has lived and studied extensively in Africa and Europe. For over five decades, her practice has been an exploration into issues concerning Ancient African architecture and sculptural traditions; spirituality, and community. On the occasion of her solo exhibition at the Studio Museum in Harlem, the art critic, writer and curator Okwui Enwezor explained, “Ramsaran’s work is a scrupulous distillation of her experiences while living and traveling through Africa (Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Morocco, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Egypt) in the early eighties. In her sculpture’s spindly, attenuated forms, the body’s essence fills the exhibition space with an explosive, troubling aura.” Her sculpture have been the subject of numerous exhibitions, including Extinction: Signals of Alarm The Wilmer Jennings Gallery at Kenkeleba (2018) Herstory, Welancora Gallery (2016), Essentia, Taller Boricua, New York, NY, 2016, Facing the Rising Sun, Wilmer Jennings Gallery, New York, NY, 2014, art of the 5:brooklyn, Interchurch, New York, NY, 2014, Its Surreal Thing: The Temptation of Objects, The Sheldon Museum of Art, Lincoln, Nebraska, 2013, A Significant Find, Maplewood Art Center, Maplewood, New Jersey, 2010, Twin Infinities, Abrons Art Center, New York, NY. 2009, African American Artists, on Paper, State University of New York at Geneseo, Geneseo, New York, 2008, Other exhibitions include: Back to the Future: Contemporary American Art from the Collection, Mead Museum, Amherst, Massachusetts, 2007, Something to Look Forward To, Beach Museum, University of Kansas, Manhattan, Kansas, 2006, Something to Look Forward To, African American Art Museum, San Francisco, California, 2006, Something to Look Forward To, The Heckscher Museum of Art, Huntington, New York, 2005; Contemporary Women Artists: New York, University Art Gallery, Indiana State University Terre Haute, Indiana, 2005, Creating Their Own Image: A History of African American Women Artists, Parsons Galleries, New York, New York 2004/05, Something to Look Forward To, The Phillips Museum of Art, Franklin Marshall College, Lancaster Pennsylvania, 2004, Comfort Zones: Sculptural Solutions for the Spirit, TENRI Cultural Institute of New York, New York, NY, 2003; Paper 2003, Metaphor Contemporary Art, Brooklyn, NY, 2003; LIFE - COLOR - FORM, Gallery Brocken, Tokyo, Japan, 2002.
Other exhibitions include: Dwellings: Real and Imagined, The American Museum of Natural History, 2002; Assembly/Line: Works by Twentieth Century Sculptors, Mead Art Museum, Amherst, Massachusetts, 2002 “Windows of the Soul”, Phoebe Beasley and Helen Ramsaran, Stella Jones Gallery, New Orleans Louisiana, 2002; the belles of amherst: contemporary women artists in the collections of the mead art museum and university gallery of the university of Massachusetts, Amherst, Amherst, Massachusetts, 2002; Helen Evans Ramsaran, Matt Burke, Eric Laxman, 2nd Annual Sculpture Show, Hopper House Art Center, Nyack, New York, 2002; Nexus II Paul Gadere, Helen Evans Ramsaran and Freddy Rodriguez, Skoto Gallery, New York, New York, 2001; Roots and Wings, Cinque Gallery, New York, 2001; The Spirit of a Woman, Cinque Gallery, New York, New York, 2001; Cities and Desire, The Rotunda Gallery, Brooklyn, New York, 2001; Selections, Skoto Gallery, New York, New York, 2000; Unbound: Reshaping Artist’s Books, Abrons Arts Center, New York, New York, 2000; Generations II A Survey of Woman Artists at the Millennium, A.I.R. Gallery, New York, New York, 2000; Public Voices/Private Visions, Rockland Center for the Arts. West Nyack, New York, 2000.