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Silvia Levenson: I See You’re a Bit Nervous

Bullseye Connection Gallery
Portland OR Oct 1-Nov 30, 2005

Silvia Levenson - I Love You, Honey
Silvia Levenson, I Love You, Honey (2005), kiln-cast glass and mixed media [Bullseye Connection Gallery, Portland OR, Oct 1-Nov 30]

In her new exhibition, I See You’re a Bit Nervous, Silvia Levenson’s kiln-cast glass objects are metaphors for tumultuous emotions underlying an otherwise cozy domestic environment. As Levenson puts it, “Sometimes households become a pressure cooker. These emotional bombs lurking in family relationships are the focus of my new work”.

Levenson’s narratives contain a dark and subtle humour as well as a quintessential quality that makes the work seem personal and truthful. For example, the title piece is an installation of a dining table for two with a centrepiece of pink grenades. The tablecloth and lamp are decorated with razor blades encased in pink glass. Satirical elements are also in her smaller works: shiny pink high heels are adorned with spiky raw wire and the inscription “I Love You, Honey”. A quote from a popular song, Besame Mucho (kiss me a lot), is inscribed below a pink gun. A medicine chest full of pink guns is titled, “Are You Lonesome Tonight”. The signature rosy palette used for work in this exhibit coats delicate issues inherent in personal relationships and also lightens the undertone of trepidation. Levenson’s rendering of forms and the illusive appearance of the glass materials also work to make her pieces very approachable. 

Levenson fled from her home in Buenos Aires during the dictatorship of 1976-84 and immigrated to Italy where she currently resides. Her work has gained an international audience with pieces included in many prominent glass collections such as the Altare Glass Museum in Italy, the Glas Museum Fraueneau in Germany and the Corning Museum of Glass, New York.


Allyn Cantor

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