Artist Statement

I tend to be keenly in tune with my surroundings, which can be beneficial, yet overwhelming due to the expansive visual stimuli within the world.  Regardless, this is what drives my desire to work slowly and methodically, meditatively building one small element on top of another. I set before me a challenging task that seems to have no defined endpoint. The deliberate process of meticulously drawing and cutting everything by hand allows for a more intimate examination of the materials, which in turn draws me closer to the subject.  Also, the methodical pouring of thin layers of paint and the waiting for it to dry requires great patience and the opportunity for reflection.


Leslie Shellow was born in Washington DC in 1969 and currently resides in Baltimore, Maryland.  She has exhibited in such venues as The Delaware Center for Contemporary Art, the Silber Art Gallery at Goucher College, the King Street Art Gallery at Montgomery College, the National Institute of Health and the Fraser Gallery in Bethesda, MD.

In 2015, she was selected as a Sondheim Prize semi-finalist and exhibited her most recent installation at the Maryland Institute College of Art’s Meyerhoff Gallery.  Leslie was awarded the Maryland State Arts Council Individual Artist Award for Works on Paper in 2010, 2013 and 2016. She holds an MFA in Painting from Towson University, a BFA from The Maryland Institute College of Art and a BA in Education from the Evergreen State College. Her work consists of oil painting on panel, ink drawing on panel and paper, printmaking, bookmaking and installation.  Pulling her imagery from observations of nature, both in the visible world and through microscopes, Leslie addresses natural processes such as growth, decay and regeneration. Mold, lichen, corral, cells, viruses and bacteria are among the many natural elements that influence her work.

She currently teaches Drawing at the Maryland Institute College of Art

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