Contact Sheet 181: Letha Wilson
Paperback: 48 pages
Publisher: Light Work (April 2015)
A special edition of 100 copies of this issue have been hand-altered by the artist, signed, and numbered. To order, use the dropdown at left to select “Signed by the artist.”
Letha Wilson’s photographic, sculptural work begins as an exploration into our understanding of landscape. By alluding to conventions of romanticism and mythology, and expanding the possibilities of interpretation through abstraction, Wilson exposes the photograph’s inability to truly contain the place it represents. Her images of the American West—vast canyons, desert plants, and sky—are formed into sculptural objects that utilize the physical space of the gallery. At times embedded into walls, floors, and ceilings, even wrapping around (or through) architectural details, her inventive and playful approach to installation informs the tactile experience of her work. Wilson intervenes the static image by folding, distorting, and bending iconic landscapes into complex forms that elicit the sheer weight and beauty of the sublime. Wilson spent the month of February 2015 as an Artist-in-Residence at Light Work in Syracuse, where she produced a selection of new works for the exhibition Sight Specific (March 17 – July 18, 2015).
This catalogue includes an essay by Light Work’s director Shane Lavalette.
Letha Wilson is a mixed media artist who was born in Honolulu, Hawaii, raised in Colorado, and currently lives in Brooklyn, New York. Her outdoor excursions amongst the Rocky Mountains have placed the natural world and its photographic image at the root of her artistic interests. She earned her BFA from Syracuse University and an MFA from Hunter College in New York City, and attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2009. Wilson’s artwork has been shown at many venues including Art in General, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Bronx Museum of the Arts, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, International Center for Photography, Essl Museum of Contemporary Art, Hauser and Wirth, Eleven Rivington, and Higher Pictures. In 2013 Letha was awarded a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Photography and chosen as the Deutsche Bank Fellow, and in 2014 awarded a Jerome Foundation Travel Grant. Wilson is Light Work’s February 2015 Artist-in-Residence.