OPENING: Friday 3 February, 6-8pm
TALK: Saturday 4 February, 11am
In late January the third Leslie Holt solo exhibition goes up at David Lusk Gallery–Memphis. Her exhibition, Unspeakable, explores depictions of grief and triumph in a series of embroidered paintings that feature art-historic images of strong women.
Holt imagined the Unspeakable series while studying Guernica, Picasso’s famous response to the bombing of a small Spanish town. Holt states, “I feel compelled to return to this painting again and again, as it conveys extreme emotions for which words are insufficient.”
After acrylic-staining unprimed canvas Holt embroiders the woman image, working in a network of clumps and lines. “Much like washing my aging mother’s hair,” Holt says, “the stitches require careful attention and a slow pace. The activity is simple but full. A lot is left unspoken.”
The daunting stains of thinned acrylic pigment hover near Holt’s figures, speaking to a wordless memory or truth. Reminiscent of Kathe Kollwitz’s depictions of grieving women in times of unspeakable loss, Holt’s images take on a more abstract approach to grief. The bright colors and graphic lines work to partially disguise a darker reality and origin. Despite the historic connections, each Holt woman relates to the universal and personal, representing either a shared reality of the past or a more personal one in the present.
Holt received her BFA from Washington University and MFA from Washington State University. Along with several solo exhibitions across the country and a recent review in the Washington Post, and a feature in the book Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty’s Trek Across the Pacific by Christine Yano.
David Lusk Gallery is located at 97 Tillman. Gallery hours are Tuesday-Friday 10-5:30 and Saturday 11-4. For more information or visuals please contact Amelia Briggs at 901 767 3800 or firstname.lastname@example.org.