Opening September 9th at the Art Foundry Gallery: Leslie Smith
About the Artist :
Leslie Tucker Smith is a California born artist who grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area and now resides in the Sierra Nevada Foothills. A graduate of San Jose State University, she holds a degree in graphic design and at graduation received an Award of Merit for her portfolio.
As a commercial artist in Northern California, she won top recognition for her work in black and white print advertising.
Smith has always had an affinity for a range of visual and textural media. Early in her career as a clothing designer and fabric artist, the San Francisco Chronicle’s fashion editor applauded Smith for her hand made silk screened fabrics and dress designs, reminiscent of Finland’s contemporary Marimeko Designs. It was during in this time frame Smith also explored the use of wax resist techniques in fabric dying in created large wall hangings for interior and exterior spaces for which she was commissioned by the Artist in Residence at San Jose State as well through private collectors. Later, Smith expanded her interest in textiles by studying dying techniques. She followed her interest by spending time with the women of a small village on the Northern Border of Greece who had formed a small cottage industry dedicated to spinning, dying and weaving fabrics for export. She continued her interest in textiles by exploring the range of colors that could be derived from natural plant materials. Later her work was included in a group show of natural fiber spinning and plant dyes at California’s Richmond Art Center.
In the area of ceramics, Smith shared a studio in Benicia, California where she excelled in hand built stoneware that was both functional and sculptural. Later in Sacramento, her sculptural work, judged by Yoshio Taylor, received the Award of Merit in Mixed Media in a show by the Valley Sculpture Artists.
Smith has been commissioned for her work in jewelry making as well. She studied and utilized the lost wax centrifugal method of casting which she studied both as an undergraduate student at San Jose State and at the Mendocino Art Center. Smith used theses opportunities to explore and express concepts of “natural” design.
Smith has always considered herself to be a painter first and foremost. Today she uses acrylics, pastels and sewn objects in her canvases and considers herself to be as an abstract expressionist. As she describes it, “My work is a living process. It keeps me connected to something basic within myself. It sometimes takes the form of being a visual journalist, telling my life story experientially. I am a process painter in that I am captivated by how the canvas changes as I work”.
"Joyous Response", acrylic/oil crayon/pastel, 48" x 48"In 2008 Smith’s paintings were part of a group “Color Show” at the Art Foundry Gallery Sacramento. One of her pieces was then selected for display in Sacramento’s City Hall.
Smith also holds a Masters of Science in Marriage and Family Therapy. She currently works as a psychotherapist in counseling where in she utilizes all of her capabilities and art training in her work with her clients.