Recent Works by
Nancy Train Smith and Lisa Lebofsky
July 1st - July 26th
Artists' Reception: Saturday, July 11th 5-7pm
Dedee Shattuck Gallery is pleased to present recent works by Nancy Train Smith and Lisa Lebofsky.
This exhibit showcases two artists who, by painting with oil, examine ephemerality and permanence through the immersive qualities of the natural world. Each artist interprets a landscape, allowing the viewer to contemplate the meaning of the composed image: what is real and what is imagined?
Lisa Lebofsky is a painter residing in Brooklyn, New York. She holds a BFA in metalsmithing from SUNY New Paltz, and an MFA in painting from the New York Academy of Art. Her work is in private collections, and has been exhibited in solo and group shows both nationally and internationally.
Nancy Train Smith received her BA in Art History from Wellesley College in 1968 from Wellesley, Massachusetts. In 1977 she completed a four-year diploma program at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where she focused on installation, performance, and video. Since that time, Smith has developed her artistic practice to include ceramics and intensive studies in painting.
Lebofsky and Smith explore land, sea, and sky. These images solidify a moment, a point in time where, while standing in this place, one might find transcendence.
My work explores the limitless capacity of the mind when it engages with nature. The natural world functions as a launch point for liberating the mind from restrictions imposed by everyday life. In addition to visual inspiration, nature provides an essential and symbolic role throughout my work. Images of reverie such as tidal waters, deep forests and ephemeral clouds are prominently featured — the cusp of infinite space and contemplation. The sublime landscapes embody the transcendent psyche.
The images are rendered with thin layers of oil paint applied onto sanded aluminum. The metal is left exposed to produce a unifying luminescence that can either permeate each painting, or, if viewed at precise angles, obliterate the image. This fluctuating luster mimics the subtle movements of light experienced in nature. The paintings are often monochromatic and minimal because they are not representative of a literal world; rather, the work represents reflections of the subconscious mind.
I find inspiration and collect source material by traveling extensively to immerse myself in different environments. I primarily paintsonsite, but also takes digital photos to cultivate a library of images for studio work. I seek out remote areas that are generally sparse and uninhabited, and therefore ideal for contemplative transcendence. Recent travels include Tuscany, Antarctica, Newfoundland and Labrador, Greenland, and the Maldives.
Lisa Lebofsky is a painter residing in Brooklyn, New York. Her paintings on aluminum explore the limitless capacity of the mind when it engages with nature. She holds a BFA in metalsmithing from SUNY New Paltz, and an MFA in painting from the New York Academy of Art. Her work is in private collections, and has been exhibited in solo and group shows both nationally and internationally. She is the recipient of several awards and residencies including the Prince of Wales Scholarship travel grant to the Château de Balleroy, France (2005), Terra Nova National Park artist in residence (2010), the BRIO (Bronx Recognizes Its Own) Grant from the Bronx Council of the Arts (2010, 2014), New Bedford Whaling Museum artist in residence (2013) and Saltonstall Foundation artist in residence (2014).
Nancy Train Smith
This body of painted work, all oil on gesso board, represents a focused return to painting after an eight-year hiatus in ceramics. My newer ceramic work is inspired by Chinese Scholar Objects. Seeking a different way to create imagery based in the natural world, I found the approach of the Chinese Scholar culture to offer a fresh vision to me. The scholar objects depend on a "found" object that appears to distill the form taken by the movement of energy in nature. In some sense my source photographs take the place of the "found" and become the basis for a similar appreciation. Clouds and water as subjects offer a chance to shift my gaze away from discrete objects in nature and toward a greater degree of abstraction.
Nancy Train Smith received her BA in Art History from Wellesley College in 1968 from Wellesley, Massachusetts. In 1977 she completed a four-year diploma program at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, where she also received a travel fellowship the following year. Her work during her years as a student included installation, performance, and video. However, she soon found herself immersed in a new ceramic practice that has carried her through to the present. She spent several years from 1995-2005 furthering her skills by engaging in an intensive painting study of the landscape of the estuarine South Coast of Massachusetts. Smith claims “Often crawling through the underbrush with my camera, I sought to capture the feeling of being in the landscape rather than looking at it.” Smith completed a large ceramic landscape installation titled Migration, which she installed on the Slocum River Reserve in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, and is now included in the permanent collection of the New Bedford Whaling Museum. In the spring of 2013, Smith once again took up her painting practice in preparation for her exhibition at Dedee Shattuck Gallery in Westport, Massachusetts.