Ron Bishop Edison Community College Essay

May 2, 2001

Gallery of Fine Art
Edison Community College
“Tropisms and Small Fires”
May 11 – July 8, 2001

Opening Reception:  May 11, 6pm to 8pm

Artist’s Talk:             May 11, 7pm

Contact:  Ron Bishop, Curator

This exhibit features the work of New York artist Stephanie Brody Lederman.  The exhibit includes more than 40 paintings completed in the 90’s.  Lederman’s work, in a sense, is a cronicle of our time and the universal story of our lives.  As in Gertrude Stein’s concept of “everybody’s autobiography,” Lederman offers, through the generalities of our daily sojourn, insights into our lives, our social interactions, and our intimate personal contact with our own individual realities.

Lederman’s work does not fit into an ‘ism, it does not rely on a movement or a category for it’s validation.  It is neither mainstream nor fashionable art. Her work is raw and fresh, yet sly in presentation and technical accomplishment. But most of all it originates at the core of her being.  Therein lies the power and the authenticity of her work.

Asked to comment on her work Stephanie responded in a recent statement, “because my art involves words and discernable images, I am working with concrete meaning in search of a metaphor that is richer than the simplicity of the images. I want to touch the viewer in a way that enables him or her to access sincere feeling and emotional truths ….. I feel more comfortable with the tender telling of taking a dog to the vet, than philosophical treatises on power and love.  I want to show the complexity and beauty of life, the poetry inherent in the ordinary.”  To that end words and images play off each other in the viewer’s mind and are filtered by the personal record each individual carries.  Stephanie touches on the ordinary to show us the sublime.

In his remarks for the exhibition catalog, B. H. Friedman, noted author whose work includes Jackson Pollock: Energy Made Visible,” points to a connection between Lederman’s work and what Jean Dubuffet identified as l’art brut (Dubuffet organized the first major public exhibition of this art in 1949.)  Friedman effortlessly takes us through Dubuffet’s definition of l’art brut and states in the catalog essay (referring to Dubuffet’s Collection de l’Art Brut,) “I assume that if Dubuffet had owned post-Cubist Picassos or dripped Pollocks, work he admired, they, too, would have been included.  And so would Stephanie Brody Lederman if Dubuffet had known her work. It fits well into that special category of cultural art inspired by raw art.”

Lederman’s work is whimsical, serious and unpretentious. It is so pure that the viewer need not try to enter her work. It is remarkably accessible once the viewer dismisses attempts at literal translation.  The imagery and text work together metaphorically to invite each participant on a journey. The experience is initiated by Lederman’s selections and completed by each individual, culminating in a completely unique experience for every viewer.

Lederman’s work can be found in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, NYC,

Brooklyn Museum of Art, NY, The Jewish Museum, NY, National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, DC, Newark Museum, NJ, Cooper Hewitt Museum NY, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and Yale University Library, New Haven, to name a few.

The reception and artist’s talk are open to the public.

Refreshments will be provided by the Docents of the Gallery of Fine Art, and Emmy award winning recording artist Kat Epple will be playing selections on flute.

Gallery hours:

Tuesday – Friday      10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Saturday                    11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Sunday                        1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Phone:  941-489-9313

All content © Copyright 2024 by Stephanie Brody-Lederman.
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