After Dark, from The Distant Systems Series
Lesley your works of art are incredible and so fascinating.
1) When did you become interested in creating art?
Thank you! That’s quite a compliment.
Art found me. My mother is an artist. When she decided to go to The Art Institute of Chicago, my older brother and I also began our art education, at the museum’s junior school. I was seven years old.
2) Have you had mentors or people in your life who have encouraged your endeavors?
The first mentor, obviously is my mother…..very encouraging. Also, many of her enormously, talented artist friends were part of my upbringing. When I graduated from The Art Institute of Chicago, I left the following day for New York City, because at that time, it was where you went if you wanted to be a ‘serious artist.’ I became very close with another family of very talented artists and textile designers. In fact, they were connected to Albert Hadley and Sister Parish!
I have many mentors…..they come in all different sizes, ages, and they come from this time and going back to the beginning of recorded artistic expression.
3) What inspires you? How does your thought process work when you begin a new piece or a new series of art?
I think of what I do as a Thank You Card. There’s always so much to be grateful for, enchanted by, and curious about. My thought process is more of a quiet retreat. I stop Time, whenever possible, and wait. I wait to be directed. I wait for Vision to make an appearance. When that occurs, then I follow and obey. When I trust that approach, the pictures usually work. I look for a connection between my contrary aspects: body, mind, spirit. When there’s alignment, then a story begins. Usually, the story tells you what to say.
3.1) How did your current genre in art come about?
I developed what I do using the structure of painting which was my focus of study.
I wanted a more direct way to put the ideas down and see if the concepts were worth investigating. Being aware of the world and the array of tools, I landed on an unconventional way to achieve the same result. I discovered that a color copier works as a combination of silk-screening and photography. But for me, it was a way to put all the elements necessary to paint with, into one device: light, color, paper, and a ‘tabletop’ to set up the pictures from.
4) Does being part of a renowned family of artists create synergy?
Yes! It also allows for continuity. You don’t have to explain your angle to someone unfamiliar with an artistic quest. You are free to use shorthand and stay in the excitement.
|Dylan Times For
5) Your current event is very unique, would you tell our readers about this special exhibit?
I was fortunate to do a large commission for Columbia Records, which is owned by Sony Music.
It also happens to be Bob Dylan’s label. Of the 100 portraits I did for 3 floors of their NYC corporate offices, 4 of the portraits were of Dylan. I ended up being introduced to his manager and made a proposal to do a limited edition portrait of Dylan. Each portfolio contains images of Dylan, songs of his that I’ve illustrated and icons, synonymous with his persona.
This first exhibit in Boston shows the portfolio art, as well as large-scale prints and works on brushed aluminum.
6) Lesley, that is an amazing story! Where will you be showing your art next, any upcoming exhibits?
I’m in the midst of finding other locations for the Dylan Portrait. As soon as we have dates, they will be posted on the website.
7) What is your advice to the beginning artist of any age?
Listen. Follow the prompting. Listen only to that quiet inner voice. Trust the eyes of your heart.
Thank you again Lesley for this insightful interview. I know readers will be following you to see what exhibit is next on your tour!
Lesley's website is http://lesleyschiff.com. Also visit her amazing, A Portrait of Bob Dylan exhibit at http://www.schiff-dylanexhibit.com
Harvard University's George Martin Lane Professor of Classics, Richard F. Thomas attended the LIT Exhibition with several students on Oct.25. Professor Thomas had this to say to Bob Dylan's management about his experience at LIT:
"I thought it worked really well. The juxtapositions of lyrics, fonts, colors, texture, evocative images, most recognizable but transformed in the new medium, all made for a pleasing hour and a half."
To read Richard Thomas' The Performance Artistry of Bob Dylan, co-edited with Catharine Mason, Oral Tradition 22.1, online only, please reference the link: http://journal.oraltradition.
To read Richard Thomas' bio, please reference the link: http://scholar.harvard.edu/
To listen to an interview on NPR's (WBUR Boston) Morning Edition with Bob Oakes, please reference:
Lesley's art ranges in size from 16" x 24" up to 60" x 90" -- as unique works, multiples & limited editions.
Lesley finalizes all of her work on a Canon ImagePROGRAF and Hahnemuhle Photo Rag Archival Paper.
Many thanks to Paula Winke, marketing and public relations consultant at Creative Business Affairs, who made the introduction. Paula is based in Kansas City and works with clients here in North America and abroad.
Thank you to my Family, Friends and Followers who Support The Arts!
Please do leave a comment as they make my day!
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The Arts by Karena
The India Hicks Holiday Collection! I am very excited to share my venture with India Hicks and Living an Extraordinary Life! indiahicks.com/rep/karenalbert