Whereas art and life are mere imitations of each other, I can echo that sentiment loudly from my own forest.
After relocating to rural upstate New York 17 years ago my life has become completely informed and inspired by my interaction with the plant kingdom. So much so that I became a commercial landscaper , grow a large amount of my own food. and started a botanical garden with my husband.
Hortus Conclusus as it is called, has become a class-1 Arboretum , specializing in rare fruit plants from around the world. Our goal is for our gardens to be a “Living Textbook” ( Hortus.biz. )
My art has also followed my life interests using plants as a wellspring for inspiration. My current body of work deals with the properties of found organic materials at various times of the year. It also deals with the processes those materials undergo through nature's transitions; decomposition, sunlight, wind, insects, etc
By combining natural materials with wax I am trying to capture human-animal interaction with nature. The treatment of these organic materials along with various techniques of encaustic painting will convey the feeling of particular moments of time and how they reflect human emotions. From sprout to decay, you the viewer are visually confronted with the profoundly beautiful , devastating and inevitable life cycle.
My paintings are my attempt to portray, justify , and perhaps find beauty and solace in these brief moments.
Allyson Levy 2016
click on image for an enlargement, price, size and medium.
My fascination with textiles is exemplified by my attraction to the African Mud cloth designs by the Bamana people of Mali. These cloths are called 'baya', and are created using a wax as a resistance medium to create patterns, a process that employs the use of both plants and mud.
Historically, the Baya cloths have strong graphic designs that often reprsent important cultural symbols and were worn by women during important transitional periods in thier lives. Often the upper part of the cloth contains little dots which are hidden when worn. These small dots patterns symbolize the beaded belt, or " Baya", that a young Bamana woman wears around her waist and is associated with seduction and fertility.
As a middle aged American woman on the cusp of the transitional period of menopause (another important female transition often shrouded in cultural secrecy), my own identity as a viable reproductive female has certainly been challenging. Creating the 'Baya' series, with a deliberate sense of a random pattern is a play on the African idea of the "Baya" cloth. But unlike the traditional African textiles, my collection of panels is meant to display my personal collection of 'reproductive' dots (literally seeds or eggs). Encased in wax to preserve and aestheticize these seeds, these panels are meant to symbolize my transitional journey. -Allyson Levy 2014
Carrie Haddad Gallery - December 7 – January 22, 2017
“Winter Exhibit” - Hudson, NY
Mayson Gallery – October 18 – November 1, 2016
“Full Circle” - New York, NY
Union Street Studio – September 18 – November 13, 2016
“Encaustics Small Works”, Brooklyn NY
Anne Marie Sculpture Garden & Arts Center – May 20- August 28th 2016
“Swarm”, Dowell MD
2015 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region – July 9 – Sept 5, 2015
University Art Museum, Univeristy at Albany, NY
Carrie Haddad Gallery – September 22, 2014 – November 2, 2014-
“Fall Exhibit” a group show
Albany International Airport Annex Gallery – April 2015
The Hyde Collection - October 12 - December 31, 2013
"2013 Artists of the Mohawk Hudson Region" Glens Falls NY
Bethel woods Center for the Arts - August 10 - 19th 2013
"Current Hues of the Hudson", Bethel Woods NY
Muroff Kotler Visual Arts Gallery - March 15 - April 19 2013
"Cut & Paste" - Stone Ridge NY
Carrie Haddad Gallery – August 18th 2012
Contemprary Painters(Who Just Happen to be Women)
Carrie Haddad Gallery – April 21st 2011 – May 29th
20th Anniversary Exhibit Hudson, NY
Carrie Haddad Gallery – May 14th 2009 – June 21st
Spring Group Exhibit, Hudson, NY
Carrie Haddad Gallery – July 12th 2007 -- August 12th
Group Show, Hudson, NY
Conrad Wilde Gallery – March 3rd 2007 – April 28th
Second Annual Encaustic Invitational, Tucson, AZ
Samuel Dorsky Museum – Sept 17th 2005 – Dec 11th
Encaustic Work 2005
New Paltz, NY
Coffey Gallery – Sept 4th 2004 – Sept 26th
“new encaustic works”
R & F Gallery - Feb 5th 2000 – March 25th
"Markings"- a collection of personal histories - encaustic on wood
A.O.V. Gallery Nov 12 1998- Dec 19th
"MARKINGS" - a collection of personal histories - encaustic on wood
San Francisco, California
Pittsburgh Children Museum 2002
“Time Encapsulated “ Monument
Metal & glass sculpture (20’ x 7’)
Syracuse University, BFA Film - 1988