Exhibition closed: June 28, 2021
An installation by Leah Reynolds
Safety has been on all our minds during the past year- in several ways. We have been concerned for our families and communities as well as ourselves, and for the health and security of our bodies, minds, and society. At the same time, we are compelled to search for ways to escape, real or imagined. This is the period during which I worked on Safety. Looking at it now, I see things that I was not thinking about consciously at the time:
The boat is often a symbol of security and suggests a journey (vacation/escape)- but in my depiction there are no oars to control it and it is diving deeper into the water. Boats have also been used as burial vessels, and in Greek mythology Charon carries the souls of the dead across the river Styx by boat. The fact that the boat is empty is also disquieting- as many of us have been spending so much time apart from others.
About the artist
Leah Reynolds works mainly in sculpture and installation. Her work is usually temporary, and meant to be experienced in relation to the whole body. Her work plays with the dichotomies between fragility and strength; ephemerality and solidity. The use of fabric as a basic material allows her to explore these issues.
When Reynolds started her career, she was most interested in placing art in places where it could be encountered by anyone. She was drawn to using fabric because of its various uses; for protection, disguise, decoration, etc., as well as its association with women’s work. While working at a shelter for battered women and their children Reynolds began to think about the concept of shelter- physical, psychic, metaphoric. This has remained as one of the basic elements in her work.