Ysabel LeMay: Artist

My Native Admission Statement: Since winning the New York KiptonART 2011 Rising Stars Program, the work of Austin, Texas-based artist Ysabel LeMay has seen more than 115 exhibitions around the globe and has been acquired for the corporate collections of Chevron, Bloomingdale’s and Bacardi, and the permanent collections at the Museum of Photographic Arts and the Morris Museum. My immense naiveté and enthusiasm, combined with my relentless desire to surpass myself, are the characteristics that have propelled me to where I am today. I believe if you take the time to craft exceptional work, you will be noticed. Nowadays, with the help of social media, artists are being discovered through their work going viral, bloggers reaching people by thousands and sometimes millions. Curators, gallery directors, and collectors are now using online platforms and technology to research and find new talents. That, however, is pretty universal these days. In my own practice, I’ve also followed a strategy of using the side door. What I mean is, in addition to contacts in your own immediate field (for me, that’s gallerists, curators, art critics and so forth), building a non-traditional professional network, with people in fields adjacent to your own. In my case, that means, for instance, architects and interior designers.

What do you expect from the interaction of your work and the viewers?

There are artists who demand a specific reaction from their audience, and I respect that passion, that intensity of conviction. But I am not one of those artists. I understand myself to be simply a channel, a gateway for nature’s mysteries and marvels. Once I have passed my experience to the viewer, I leave it to them to decide how they can engage with these images. For some, it may simply be pleasant and charming, a decoration for their lives. Others, however, may find something much deeper and richer, something approaching the spiritual. Ideally, I would like my work to give the viewer a moment, long or short, of meditation, through which they can more fully understand their world and themselves.

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