Vanessa German (born 1976) is an American sculptor, painter, writer, activist, performer, and poet based in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
Her sculpture often includes assembled statues of female figures with their faces or heads painted black, and a wide range of attached objects, including fabric, keys, found objects, and toy weapons. German is an activist, addressing problems like gun violence and prostitution.
Her work is held in numerous permanent collections, including the Frederick R. Weisman Art Foundation, the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, and the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art; and has been reviewed by Sculpture and discussed in The New York Times, O, The Oprah Magazine, and on NPR's All Things Considered. Her art has been featured in a wide range of galleries, museums and traveling exhibits, including the 2012 "African American Art 1950–present" touring exhibit from the Smithsonian Institution. She was a 2015 recipient of the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation Biennial Grant. She was the winner of the 2018 Don Tyson Prize, a biannual $200,000 award from the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.
German uses her art to address hate in the world while also expressing hope for the future.