Friday, May 13, 2016

L E S L I E H O L T - Unspeakable at The 39th Street Gallery / Gateway Arts Center

Curator's Office in Conjunction with
The 39th Street Gallery / Gateway Arts Center

L E S L I E   H O L T

May 14 - June 25
Opening Reception:   Saturday, May 14       5 - 8 pm 

This reception is also the Gateway Open Studio Tour After Party. 
Refreshments will be provided by Gourmet by Karen.
Free and open to the public.

The 39th Street Gallery / Gateway Arts Center
Second Floor      
3901 Rhode Island Avenue
Brentwood, MD 20722

Gallery Hours: 
Thursdays      7 - 9 pm 
Saturdays    12 - 3 pm
and by appointment

Curator's Office is delighted to join The 39th Street Art Gallery / Gateway Arts Center in co-promoting an exhibition of noted feminist artist Leslie Holt.  In her recent series, Unspeakable, Holt embroiders meticulous line drawings of figures sourced from Pablo Picasso´s famous political war lamentation, Guernica(1937) and its preparatory sketches. Other artistic sources for her figures include the women in Vincent Van Gogh´s Sorrow (1882) and Käthe Kollwitz´s Hunger (1922). 

Situating these figures on unprimed canvas besides puddles of dripped paint or on blank grounds, Holt imbues the composition´s negative space and the canvas´s very materiality with ghosts of expunged drama. The paint stains are substitute loci of crisis; the embroidered lines are umbilical cords to unseen tragedy. That which is not visible is indeed unspeakable.

About the Artist 
Leslie Holt is an American artist based in Hyattsville, Maryland.  She is  
recognized far and wide for her Hello Masterpiece series of paintings. Holt copies instantly recognized paintings in miniature, faithful in all respects to the original, save for the addition of the Hello Kitty character appropriately inserted into the action. Her work is featured in a book that analyzes the Japanese icon as both art and commodity in Pink Globalization: Hello Kitty's Trek Across the Pacific by Christine Yano.

She received a BFA in Painting at Washington University in St. Louis and an MFA in Painting at Washington State University. She is currently Co-director of Red Dirt Studio, 
a warehouse studio for a small group of independently practicing artists and creative professionals in Mt. Rainier, MD.

Leslie has taught studio art, art history and art appreciation on the college level since 2001. She has also worked as a social worker and advocate for people with developmental disabilities, mental illness, and people receiving welfare benefits. From 2009-2012 she served as founding board president and then executive director of VSA Missouri, a statewide organization that promotes access to arts for people with disabilities.

In addition to her studio practice, Leslie teaches at Art Works Now in Mt. Rainier, Maryland, Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission in Greenbelt, Maryland, and online for Fontbonne University in St. Louis, Missouri.  She has exhibited her work nationally and is represented by the David Lusk Gallery in Memphis and Curator's Office in Washington , DC.
About Gateway CDC
Gateway Community Development Corporation (CDC) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization located in North Brentwood, Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission

Prince George's County, Maryland. It drives economic revitalization along the U.S. Route 1 Corridor through business and neighborhood development initiatives including promotion of the arts as a community building strategy. Gateway CDC works within the communities of Brentwood, North Brentwood, and Mount Rainier, MD and in collaboration with multiple partners to ensure the success of the entire Gateway Arts District. 
Image Above: 
Leslie Holt, Unspeakable (Guernica Sketch #7), 2016,  
acrylic and embroidery on canvas, 20" x 16"

Curator's Office 
+ 202.360.2573

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