Leah Poller | #BED



LEAH POLLER, Death Bed: Homage to Frida Kahlo (2012), bronze, 10.5” x 7.5” x 15.5”

LEAH POLLER, Death Bed: Homage to Frida Kahlo (2012), bronze, 10.5” x 7.5” x 15.5”

September 19 – October 13, 2013

Curated by Robert P. Stack

Opening Reception:
Thursday, September 19, 5PM – 9PM
Gallery Night Providence

Salon at Yellow Peril:
Friday, September 20, 5PM – 7PM
Hosted by The Providence Athenaeum

Gallery Hours:
Thursday + Friday, 3PM – 8PM
Saturday + Sunday, 12PM – 5PM
Other days by appointment

Yellow Peril Gallery is pleased to present #BED, a solo exhibition which titillates new understandings of our relationship with the bed via small scale mixed media sculptures and site-specific interactive installations by New York sculptor Leah Poller, opening Thursday, September 19, 2013, during Gallery Night Providence.

Bedridden from an accident caused while moving a large sculpture in her Soho studio, Leah Poller spent many hours pondering the nature of the bed, in life, in language and in art. Her “101 Bed Collection” became a detailed examination of the history, meaning and symbolic nature of that unique place where one-third of life is lived, and where the most significant of life’s activities are enacted.

“The bed is the most intimate stage on which our true selves appear – in birth, death, sex, loving and dreaming,” Poller shares. “Our language is rich in words that contain ‘bed’, which inspired me to transform these common words into visual images.”

Using found objects and visual metaphors, Poller has taken one of life’s most significant icons – The Bed – and converted it into a three-dimensional, visual language of love, pathos, humor, society, aesthetics and culture, conjugated in several languages and crossing mental and emotional borders.

“The iconography of the bed is part of a shared consciousness, an intrinsic experience that is simultaneously universal and secretive, personal and for many, unmentionable,” notes Curator Robert P. Stack, who selected over a dozen small scale sculptures for #BED at Yellow Peril Gallery. “Poller focuses on the object or place, masterfully executed in a playful array of rich materials, textures and colors. But what brings them alive is what’s absent but implied: people, actions, feelings, sickness, lust, rest, intimacy – all the human forces of emotion that fuel meaning in life.”

In 2010, convinced that the importance of our beds had gone unexplored, Poller began “The Unmade Bed Project”, inviting people from around the world to post an image of their unmade bed on a dedicated site (http://www.unmadebedproject.com). At Yellow Peril, visitors will have an opportunity to participate in “The Unmade Bed Project” using #BED to share their photos and experiences in real-time via social networks.

As a prequel to an upcoming Athenaeum Salon Series on the history of salon culture, and in homage to the original salonnières of 17th century France, whose practice of cultivating conversation among their invited guests from the intimacy of their beds created an atmosphere where ideas of public and private came to define one another in a new way, the Providence Athenaeum will host a unique Salon discussion with Poller from a bed installed at Yellow Peril about the concept behind #BED and where the project has taken flight since its launch in 2012.

The opening reception for #BED is Thursday, September 19, from 5PM – 9PM during Gallery Night Providence. The exhibition will be on display until Sunday, October 13, 2013. Poller’s work has been exhibited in galleries, museums and institutions in Mexico City, Paris, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Chicago, and, most recently, Hong Kong and Shanghai. This is her first solo exhibition in Providence at Yellow Peril Gallery.

About Leah Poller
LEAH POLLER was born in Pennsylvania. She received classical training in sculpture at the prestigious École Nationale Superieure de Beaux Arts, in Paris, France. Partaking of a rich, multi-cultural environment, Poller interacted with foremost members of the international arts communities of France, Spain, Italy and Latin America. Returning to the United States in 1992, she established her studio in Soho and began the series of “101 Beds” which has been exhibited in galleries and institutions in Europe, Mexico, and throughout the United States. In 2009 Poller moved to Sugar Hill, Harlem. She has recently concluded a 12-year project – The 101 Bed Collection and is working on several portrait commissions. She has been featured on CNN, Fox Television and in numerous art publications. She has lectured extensively and held workshops on creativity. She was named Director of “Intercambios de Arte y Cultural Internacionale”, a not-for profit furthering cultural exchanges between the Americas and spearheading the restoration of a major twentieth century mural, recently discovered to be the work of Philip Guston. For more info about Leah Poller, visit www.leahpoller.com.

About The Providence Atheneum
THE PROVIDENCE ATHENAEUM, founded as “The Athenaeum” in 1836, is an independent, member-supported library open to the public. As a unique independent, member-supported library and cultural center, The Athenaeum welcomes and enriches the educational and cultural pursuits of its members and the community and encourages a diverse public to engage in spirited conversation. It offers a wide range of experiences by providing and conserving extraordinary collections, offering innovative and compelling programs, promoting and collaborating with the community’s vibrant cultural sector, and highlighting and preserving its historic building. For more info about The Providence Athenaeum, visit providenceathenaeum.org.

About Yellow Peril Gallery
YELLOW PERIL GALLERY is a contemporary art gallery located at The Plant, a historic mill complex in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence, Rhode Island. The Gallery strives to foster modern art critiques on popular culture and society from emerging and mid-career artists in the United States and abroad. We aspire to exhibit provocative and visually arresting artwork created specifically to ignite conversations long after viewers have left the building. Artists that we represent share our commitment to social responsibility, and a percentage from the sale of all artwork is donated to a charitable organization of the Artists’ choice. For more info about future exhibitions, visit www.yellowperilgallery.com.

* * * *

If you’d like more information about this press release, or to schedule an interview with LEAH POLLER, please contact Vanphouthon Souvannasane at +1 917 655 1497 or via e-mail at van@yellowperilgallery.com.