Artist Statement: Making Order Out of Chaos
At an early age I discovered a way to reduce confusion in my life. By creating art, I could release feelings of loss, anger, fear and desire, thus creating a sense of calmness. My creative process would open my heart, enabling me to miraculously deconstruct the chaos. As I traveled my artistic, spiritual journey I became inspired by abstract expressionism, post modernism, the push pull/theory of Hans Hoffmann, the gestural elements in the works of Lee Krasner. I draw with paint, pastel, charcoal and pencil. I collage with recycled drawings, I energetically rework surfaces, create texture with sandpaper or my fingers. I express vulnerability through mark making . I reference familiar forms ( such as bones,
vessels, body parts, houses). Lines and color blocks float then anchor on tcolor fields. I reflect deeply on spatial tension, negative space and flat space. I feel gratitude when I achieve balance – allowing me complete freedom from the material world. Art is a spiritual place.
Art, Non-Profit, Community Activism
Leslye received a BFA in Ceramics and Painting from the Cleveland Institute of Art in 1976. After working as an artist for just two years, she transferred her skills to graphic design and took a job in an architectural signage company creating sign systems for hospitals and office buildings. Carried by a wave of innovation in the field of computer graphic messaging, in 1981 Leslye became the first woman owner of a signage company, Architectural Communications, Inc. She provided Cleveland developers and hospitals with architectural signage that used graphic design as a marketing tool. To this day, she advocates for equal pay for equal work and for gender equality. After the arrival of her second child in 1989, she sold her company, but continued to rely on her ability to think creatively, working for non-profit agencies and organizations. where she could continue to impact positive change. She has now committed her considerable energies to a resumption of her first and beloved career as an artist, making good on a promise she made to herself many years ago. With her 20 + year experience in non profit development, Leslye serves on the Cleveland Institute of Art Alumni Board. and in 2015 she initiated the Pocket Park Public Art Project for the City of Shaker Heights and the Shaker Community Gallery Project for the Christ Episcopal Church in Shaker Heights.