Briefly describe the work that you do.
I consider myself a printmaker, but more so in the unconventional and conceptual vein. I tend to focus on the process behind making multiples, history and documentation of the mark, and the ever-precious monotype.
At what point in your life did you decide to become an artist?
I think the answer to this question can be found here:leslieagrossman.com/1983
Tell us a little about your background and how that influences you as an artist.
In my 36 years in this body, I’ve lived in 6 states, 9 cities, and 27 different homes. Ever-shifting environments influences practically everything in my life – art-making, relationships with other humans, new routines, old routines, research, music, food, culture, etc. There are certain belongings of mine that have been packed and then unpacked practically every 16 months throughout my entire life. Those objects are the constants in my (unintentionally) fickle lifestyle. Finding (or creating) familiarity in unfamiliar settings influences me.
What types of conceptual concerns are present in your work? How do those relate to the specific process(es) or media you use?
Time, history, environment, process, The Multiple, The Original, and The Variable are all pertinent concepts. I try not to limit myself to any particular medium… I suppose time is the most prevalent medium in my work, whether it be that the time it took to create something is recorded and documented to become part of the final piece(s), or labor intensive mark-making is apparent, or there is evidence of erasure or erasability.
We once heard Chuck Close say he did not believe in being inspired, rather in working hard everyday. What motivates you in your studio practice?
I thrive in communal studios. Working around other artists is inspirational to me… I don’t succumb to distractions as easily, ideas can bounce around the room, and collaborations can magically form. Yeah, I love an open studio and look forward to sharing workspace with other artists again soon!
What artists living or non-living influence your work?
Robert Rauschenberg, Rube Goldberg, Agnes Denes, Fischli & Weiss, Paul Kammerer, Gaston Bachelard, David Byrne, The Oulipo Poets, Daniel Buren, Pee Wee Herman.
When you are not making art what types of activities and interests do you engage in?
Well, I’m a gallery director/curator and an instructor of studio art. So when I’m not making art, I’m reading about it, writing about it, promoting it, hanging it, teaching it, etc. However, at home I absolutely LOVE to cook – creating my own bizarre (and sometimes bastardized) vegan versions of dishes I’ve had at restaurants.
Leslie A. Grossman was born and raised in Midwest America. She received her Printmaking BFA from Western Michigan University in 2008 and her MFA in Printmaking from The University of Tennessee-Knoxville in 2012. For over 3 years, she was a curator and member of Exquisite Corpse Artist Collective and Gallery in Kalamazoo, MI, which she co-founded in 2005. After moving to Knoxville, she remained active in curatorial practices as the Associate Director and Director of UTK’s Gallery 1010. Leslie has exhibited her work nationally and internationally at such venues as International Print Center New York in New York City; Artlink in Ft. Wayne, IN; and Grafiki Warsztatowej in Poznan, Poland. Currently she resides in Davenport, IA as Gallery Director and Campus Curator at St. Ambrose University.
All images copyright of the artist and used with their permission.