LESLIE FRIEDMAN : smoked whitefish

Leslie Friedman, "Smoked Whitefish" (detail), silkscreen on acrylic and metal, 2018



Leslie Friedman, "Yaddah Jacket," embroidery on nylon, 2018 

For Leslie Friedman's debut exhibition as a BRG artist member, Smoked Whitefish, the artist tackles ideas of identity, social inclusion, as well as cultural and gender stereotypes. Aware of her own mixed status as a heteronormative cis-gendered Jewish woman, she finds herself asking how we can simultaneously celebrate our individual differences and cross the boundaries created for and by us in order to "create a chorus of shared voices (rather than a unified voice)."

With this exhibition, Friedman proposes a new gang on the block. She explains, "As we say 'yaddah, yaddah, yaddah' - a phrase used by the speaker to skip over elements in a story - we become the Yaddah Yaddah Yaddahs, a group calling for all those skipped over to join together. ... Smoked Whitefish is my lighthouse in the night, my cattle call, to all of those out there struggling with our current times, but still yearning for connection, driven to action."

Having received her Master of Fine Art degree from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University, Friedman is an active participant in the alternative gallery scene. She co-founded the Philadelphia-based art collective NAPOLEON in 2011 and is a current member of Good Children in New Orleans, LA. Since moving to Baton Rouge in 2016, she has served as Assistant Professor of Art at Louisiana State University. Her work has been seen nationally  and internationally with highlights including solo shows at Space 1026 (Philadelphia, PA), Millsaps College (Jackson, MS), and Delaware Contemporary (Wilmington, DE).

This exhibition is presented alongside the latest works from Kelli Scott Kelley, David Scott Smith, and Michaelene Walsh. All works from these four artists are on view, free of charge, during normal gallery hours (12 - 6 p.m., Tue - Sun) through May 31, 2018.