Libby Black is a painter and sculptural installation artist living in Berkeley. She has exhibited nationally, with such shows as “Bay Area Now 4” at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in 2005; “2004 California Biennial” at the Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach; “The Superfly Effect” at the Jersey City Museum; and at numerous galleries in New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Black has been an artist in residence at Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito and Montalvo Arts Center in Saratoga. Her work has been reviewed in Artforum, Art in America, ARTnews, Zink magazine, Flash Art, and The New York Times. She received a BFA from Cleveland Institute of Art in 1999 and an MFA at The California College of the Arts in 2001.
My current work is based on imagery culled from disparate sources like fashion magazines, snapshots, newspapers, pop culture websites, television, movies and still lifes that I have staged. I am interested in having the work chart a path through personal history and a broader cultural context to explore themes of impermanence and identity. Our lives are marked by monumental events and spectacular disasters. I have distinct mental images that represent such experiences for me – things like the birth of my son or the Challenger exploding. Our lives are also filled with mundane moments, small pleasures, and frivolous distractions.
The act of drawing and painting these images is an attempt to preserve moments that are already gone or to find meaningful connections between arbitrary things. For me the still life functions in a similar way. It is a staged collection of keepsakes and other personal items displayed with arrangements of cut flowers. Making the work is a way to take pleasure in re-creating attractive objects while also coding my identities (as a daughter, a lesbian, an artist, a mother, a dreamer, a fan, a lover, etc.) into the compositions. Using paper, hot glue and paint, I also have been creating three-dimensional still lifes and re-creating objects of personal significance.
Libby Black Review in Art in America (October 4, 2016)
Libby Black Interview with i-D Magazine (November 17, 2015)
Andrew Schoultz and Libby Black Exhibit at Left Coast: California Political Art. (April 20, 2015)