OPENING MAY 18
The Saccharine Sublime
Through June 15
See Leisa's Show Work and other work currently in the Gallery.
Leisa Rich: The Saccharine Sublime
“From impactful experiences as a child, the beauty and effect of human behavior on nature, and a quest to instigate human interaction through sight/touch/sound, I create a hyper-Utopian environment and an enveloping experience for myself and viewers. I bring my conceptual installations to fruition using thread, plastics, fabrics, mixed media, recycled and repurposed detritus, and more. I use old materials and fiber art/art techniques in new ways, and transform new materials and techniques in ways they were not originally intended for. My preferred techniques include, free motion stitching - a way of "painting" and building texture with sewing thread on a sewing machine - and manipulating a fascinating material called Fosshape®. I also dye, paint, burn, melt, hand embroider, cast, build and assemble."
Michelle Obama first uttered her now infamous motto “When they go low, we go high” during a well-received speech at the 2016 Democratic National Convention. She added that, "fear is not a proper motivator… (and) hope wins out”. Yet, Donald Trump won the election and plunged much of a whole nation into despair.
Artist Leisa Rich has watched with trepidation and fear as things have gotten worse. Artists regularly respond to social injustices by using their craft to process their feelings and make a dynamic and lasting visual impression, intent on publicly activating a response. Jim Carrey, for instance, uses raw illustration to vent his extreme distaste and loathing for the president and his work has caught on fire on social media and elicited a great deal of attention. Many of Rich’s artist friends are making art that is visually toe-curling, and make no bones about their horrified reaction to what is happening right now in our midst. Kate Kretz is one of these artists.
But Rich, after much thought, felt she had to choose to channel her intense feelings about the current political and social situation differently: create the sweetest and most strikingly beautiful works she could, to transcend the challenges of the moment, inspire catharsis, and focus attention in her viewers on positivity inherent in immersion in lovely natural worlds of flora and fauna.
Sublime means to raise aloft, and these works do just that.