The Nohra Haime Gallery is proud to present an exhibition of new works by Lesley Dill in the Windows. The artist has created a trio of collage paintings, 2 of which can be seen from the sidewalk on 10th Avenue at 21st Street. This body of work, DREAM WORLD OF THE FOREST, is a follow-up to her series titled WILDERNESS which is currently our tour to 8 museums nationwide.
This body of 3 new painting-collage works by Lesley Dill take us into a “Dream World of the Forest”, where images emerge from the crossroads of poetic text and visions in the wild. Each of these works reflects an elemental action of nature—a blazing, a bursting, a striving multiplicity.
In When the Deer Talk to Me, Dill pairs an iconic deer seemingly oblivious to the weight of beauty growing as a forest from its head, embedded in a landscape of words by contemporary poet Tom Sleigh. His words line up beneath this forest of antlers growing impossibly tall against stark white: “When the deer talk to me as they mostly do in a Dream Tongue only I can Understand… they tell me without blame all the things that I’ve done wrong and will never make better.”
Man Carrying the Wilderness Far Away on the Frontier, a gentle man peers at us calmly while barely able to contain the leaping deer’s he’s trying to carry to…where? This artwork also features Sleigh’s mythical words: “Far away on the frontier Where Trees---Still Bleed- &--Birdmen Rustle feathers & Griffins Guard!” The man in this work may appear to some as a stable trunk from which mystic deer grow and leap; but to others he may look a fragile figure, trying to contain forces beyond his control.
The third image of Blazing Tree has biblical tones, from the fire that is God’s beacon in a forest. The light draws a lone seeker to this message, ecstatic or frightening or both. This painting-collage grew from the story of a vision by a Shaker woman, Sister Hannah Cohoon, who wrote that “This tree grows in the Spirit Land”. The fire engulfs but does not destroy the tree. Rather, the tree thrives in a wondrous, living blaze. In her dream-vision, Sister Cohoon reached out in wonder to embrace the mystic fire but at the last she hesitated: “Lest the Blaze Should Torch my Hand!”.
Dill spent much of her childhood following pathways in the dark Adirondack and Maine woods, on the trail cut by deer, bear, rabbits, and porcupine. Those evergreen forests of her northern upbringing are silhouettes of spires or spikes against the sky. Even the lakes of the Adirondacks have a deep almost black depth where herons, osprey and loons flash suddenly into view. She brings these memories into her on-going themes of transcendent and visionary experiences with these new works.
This body of work is composed of Asian mulberry paper, joined as squares using a glue fusion technique. The imagery and text are made from a combination of acrylic paint and intricately hand-cut paper imagery, subtly webbed by Dill’s trademark addition of delicate hanging threads.
Born in Bronxville, New York, Lesley Dill grew up in Maine and the Adirondacks. Now based in Brooklyn, the artist works with a variety of materials such as horse hair, muslin, thread, photography, and metal that accumulates into sculpture, performance, works on paper, and fabric. From the early 1980s onwards, Dill has had over 100 solo exhibitions. Her work is found in museum collections across the United States, and has been shown both nationally and internationally. She was recently awarded the John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship.
DATES: April 1 – May 29, 2022
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT: Carolina Scarborough at firstname.lastname@example.org or 212-888-3550
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Lesley Dill. Blazing Tree, 2022. Hand-cut paper, acrylic paint, chalk pastel pencil, metallic paper and thread . 72 x 60 in. (182.9 x 152.4 cm)
Lesley Dill. Man Carrying the Wilderness Far Away on the Frontier, 2022. Hand-cut paper, acrylic paint, and thread on mulberry paper. 72 x 60 in. (182.9 x 152.4 cm)
Lesley Dill. When the Deer Talk To Me, 2022. Hand-cut paper, acrylic paint, and thread on mulberry paper. 72 x 60 in. (182.9 x 152.4 cm)
SEE THE WORK