Opening reception Saturday, January 10, 2009 from 6:30 – 8:30 pm
Leigh’s sculptures are fetishistic, militaristic, feminate and historical. She combines her principal material ceramic with beeswax, tar, platinum, gold and graphite luster to contrast the utilitarian and the decorative.
Leigh will be installing Queen Bee in the project room, a large-scale grouping of singular objects that hang from a center point. As one mass they appear to be a body or originating from a body. The sculpture hangs in the room as a collection of ammunition, ready for use. Radio antennae jut out from the piece, making this a hybrid of technology and the handmade that reflects the often misunderstood, inseparable marriage of the contemporary and the past.
Leigh describes her work as being based on the idea of corrupt education; she learned how to mold her materials through texts surrounding African “primitive objects” in their relation to the western mindset and the Modernists. Queen bee reflects the feminine experience of labor and fertility. It references the body as a religious concern, something that needs purification, as a sexual concern, through fetish and the body as a ground for alteration and scarification.
Simone Leigh is currently artist in residence at Hunter College. She’s had an active schedule of shows since 2000, In 2008, she exhibited in RUSH Arts Gallery Project Space, New York, Real Art Ways, Hartford, CT, Aljira, Newark, NJ, The Kitchen, New York, NY, Motil Hasson Gallery, New York, NY, Ava Gallery, Cape Town, South Africa, and Rotunda Gallery, Brooklyn NY