Monday, June 22, 2009
portraits of home
I stumbled upon this piece, Like Father, Like Son, made by Ohio Valley artist Alma Wallace Lesch. And the combined elements of simplicity in technique, collage of actual objects, circular framing, and folk art sensibilities caught me. I found the work moving and somehow very honest.
I then looked further and found a blog dedicated to Alma's work- showing some incredible figurative works using found and used clothing such as, Salt of the earth, above, and a few examples of her Mother & Child series below.
The use of real clothing shaped in human form is arresting and moving. The framing and compositional elements both simple and sophisticated.
Alma had a career with an array of work- most of which is only reproduced in black and white and the whereabouts of long lost. Information on her is not readily found but apparently she had quite a successful career and eventually taught fibers at a few Kentucky colleges.
Seems to me she had much wisdom to share. I am incredibly moved by her work and charged by what seems such an authenticity to her materials. I have played with using clothing to increase the size of my portrait embroideries and feel encouraged by her work to experiment with it.
I continue to constantly be amazed at the beauty put out in the world by such artists.