Lenny Kislin Solo Show

Humpty Dumpty Contemplates the Reconstructive Capabilities of the King’s Horses, mixed media, 20” x 24”

May 7 – June 19, 2016
Opening Reception: May 7, 4-6 PM

I am an Assemblage Artist. After graduating from Brooklyn Law School, my wife and I decided to pursue an alternative lifestyle and moved to Woodstock, New York to physically build our own house. While in this transitional phase, we discovered the Antiques and Art business, to which we devoted the rest of our business lives.
I have been selling unusual antiques since 1973. In the course of hunting for interesting objects to sell, I came across many pieces which I bought and put aside for the future. I have saved these objects through the years with the intent of eventually finding a way to enable others to see what I saw in them. In 1991, I began to physically join these forms into conceptual and narrative art pieces that I felt utilized those objects to their best advantages. What you see in my pieces is the fruit of my passion for these heretofore under-appreciated objects.
Upon walking into my studio I tried to figure out why I was so intensely involved in these old things, and it was not just to make a living. First of all, the objects enthrall me. I love them. I love their textures, their surfaces, their colors, their rarity, their concepts and forms. I figured out that I was not just collecting material objects. In many ways I was collecting time itself; the time it took someone to make each object, the time period from which the object came and the amount of years that have come to pass since the object was created. I felt they are coming to me through time, and each individual object combined with each other object added to the length of my existence on earth. I know it’s pretty abstract and may sound a little ridiculous, but that’s what I’ve come up with. I’ve collected time and I’ve collected beautiful things. Other people may disagree as far as the beauty is concerned, but I love primitive. That’s basically what I strive to find, primitive in line, primitive in subject.
One night I was holding a wooden sculpture that someone had carved in the 19th century and all of a sudden, I started to imagine saying to him, “Your spirit is still here. I’m holding you in my hand and I’m thinking about you and thinking about how you lived and thinking about how you came to make this piece and respecting everything about this wonder that you created.” Tears started to fall from my eyes.
After being “discovered” at a New York City art show, I have sold more than one hundred pieces to the Smith & Wollensky Restaurants across the country. Gloria Vanderbilt purchased my art for her personal collection as did the Museum of Contemporary Art of Hawaii. I have received innumerable “Best in Show” awards from respected art organizations. I was chairman of the Woodstock Artists Association from 1996 to 2002. I have curated over 140 art shows in the Ulster County area of New York and I continue to do so. I have experienced great success and my work is in many public and private collections, world-wide.

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