Leslie Parke’s paintings and photography challenge our perceptions of the visual world. Themes of light, transparency and reflection are explored through everyday objects such as shrink-wrapped cargo and colorful threads, creating a tension between what is real and what is perceived.
Parke began her career in the shadow of New York’s postwar art movements during the second half of the twentieth century, following the Color Field artists Helen Frankenthaler, Kenneth Noland and Jules Olitski. Like so many American painters from that era, Parke has spent a lifetime attempting to reconcile the still-estranged parallel universes of representation and abstraction.
Now in her fifth decade as a painter, all of her many languages have broken loose of their constraining mooring to strict realism, and Parke has fully embraced a new kind of representationally founded abstraction that is entirely her own.
Leslie Parke is a recipient of the Esther and Adolph Gottlieb Grant for Individual Support, the Lila Wallace-Reader’s Digest grant as artist-in-residence at the Claude Monet Foundation in Giverny, France, and the George Sugarman Foundation Grant, among others. Her exhibits include the Williams College Museum of Art in Williamstown, Massachusetts, the Museum of the Southwest in Midland, Texas, the Fernbank Museum in Atlanta, Georgia, the Milwaukee Art Museum in Wisconsin, the Bennington Museum, and the Museo de Arte Moderno in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Parke has a BA and MA from Bennington College in Vermont. Her work is in numerous museum and corporate collections.