The Ybor City Campus School of Visual and Performing Arts Gallery is currently presenting an exhibition by two Central Florida artists celebrating Women’s History Month. Leslie Neumann and Judith Salmon share the gallery in the Visions and Journeys exhibit March 1st through the 29th.
The two artists complement each other with overlapping themes expressed throughout their work. They explore emotional and metaphysical states and share with us a visual involvement with time, energy, memory messages and spiritual journeys. They explore the fleeting nature of things that produce a mystical experience, be it cosmic or terrestrial, contemporary or ancient.
Leslie Neumann received her BFA in painting at the California College of Arts and Crafts and her MA in painting at New York University. She moved from New York City, population 8 million, to Aripeka, a small fishing village of 500 people on the Gulf of Mexico in 1991. Her home and studio are surrounded by 14,000 acres of coastal wilderness. There she began to explore the technique of encaustic (hot wax) painting. Her work expresses the wild side of the wetlands--dark nights, moonlight reflections and the feeling that ancient spirits are present. In her Cosmos Series, she paints cosmic landscapes that allow each of us to travel deeper into the universe.
“I’m interested in the possibility that many forces, both visible and invisible, seem to converge to produce a mystical experience,” says Neumann. “The wax is applied while still hot, and as it congeals, I scrape through it to reveal other layers of color or to write words and make marks. I create an innovative textured surface with a jewel-like glow.”
Judith Salmon was born in Kingston, Jamaica. She studied painting and printmaking at the Chicago Academy of Fine Arts. As a printmaker, Judith was awarded a Director’s Fellowship to study with the Bob Blackburn Printmaking Workshop in New York City in the late 1980s. Her relief print, “Unmasking the Goddess,” was selected in 1995 for exhibition in Beijing, China by the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Judith migrated to the US in 2000 and gained her MFA from Johnson State College in Vermont. Under the agency of Very Special Arts, Florida, Judith teaches art to adults and children with disabilities throughout the state.
“I’m drawn to exploring a variety of materials and processes, so that elements like wax, collage, fiber, found-objects are embraced for their potential to conceptualize new ideas and meaning. My works share an involvement with time,” says Salmon. “I explore transience, accumulations of experience, loss and renewal. Objects become places for memory.”
Article Written By: Carolyn Kossar.