Diane Levesque: Specimens of an Inner Dialogue opens at OS Projects on August 2nd and continues through October 12th. A reception for the artist will take place on Friday, August 2nd from 6 – 9 pm.
Levesque’s practice combines the beauty and seductive quality of language with the elusiveness of memories. Her projects use novels, poems, philosophical ideas, scientific inquiry and depth psychology as a means for connecting her observations to the world around her.
Specimens of an Inner Dialogue includes two bodies of work—the Existentialist Portraits and the Lucretius Project II—that feature different modes of imagery but share an underlying visual language of saturated color, repeating forms and elaborated motifs. The Existentialist Portraits depict several of the artist’s favorite authors with passages from their books that contain existential query. The fragments of text appear as thought bubbles floating on intensely patterned surfaces littered with motifs from the writers’ works.
The abstract paintings and sculptures from the Lucretius Project II are equally weighted with a literary text: Lucretius’ philosophical poem, “On the Nature of Things,” from the first century B.C. In this series, lines of poetic beauty inspire the explosions of color and interplay of decorative elements and biomorphic forms, with several works incorporating polymer clay that sprouts from canvases and grows into diminutive “specimens” preserved under bell jars.
Both bodies of work that comprise Specimens of an Inner Dialogue evince Levesque’s skill at deftly balancing the playfulness of humor with the residue of depression and bad dreams to provide a singular and visually arresting commentary on the human condition.
About the Artist
Originally from upstate New York, Diane Levesque received her MFA from The University of Chicago. She moved to Kenosha in 1991 and began teaching art in 2004 at Carthage College, where she is Associate Professor of Art. Levesque has received numerous awards including an Illinois Arts Council Grant, the Gravida Award from the National Association for the Advancement of Psychoanalysis, a Wisconsin Arts Board Fellowship Grant and a Racine Art Museum Artist Fellowship in 2014. Her art work has been exhibited at national venues such as the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago Cultural Center, Wisconsin Academy of Art Gallery, Rockford Art Museum and the Museum of Wisconsin Art. Levesque’s work has been selected to be featured in the 2019 Wisconsin Triennial at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art.
About OS Projects
OS Projects is a contemporary art gallery in downtown Racine featuring visual artists in solo and small group exhibits. The gallery’s primary focus is on artists living and working in the Chicago-Kenosha-Racine-Milwaukee urban corridor. While the range of media the gallery presents is broad—encompassing painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, photography, video/film and installation—the exhibited artists are unified in their engagement with topical issues, experimentation with materials and processes, and adherence to craft.
The building that houses OS Projects was designed by the award-winning Milwaukee firm, Johnsen Schmaling Architects.
OS Projects is located at 601 Sixth Street, Racine, Wisconsin. Gallery hours are Thursday – Saturday, 12 – 5 pm, and by appointment. The gallery is also open during downtown Racine First Fridays and other special events. For more information, please visit the gallery website: osprojects.art.
The image that accompanies this listing shows Virginia Woolf: A Coherence in Things (2015) by Diane Levesque.