Leslee Nelson

Image of radiating star

Artist Statement  

In December 2005 I saw an exhibit, Weavings of War: Fabrics of Memory, which included memory cloths from South Africa. These brightly colored fabrics had embroidered images from the makers' experience. Accompanying them were narrative paragraphs explaining the scene depicted. They are called "Amazwi Abesifazane: Voices of Women".

It was an "Aha!" moment. Since then I have been making these embroidered stories from my life.

I started with stories I tell often and then ones of my revelations and spiritual discoveries. Then in 2006 I confronted my parents with their favoritism of my brother. As I worked on these stories as memory cloths I came to a forgiveness and peace inside myself. I'm hoping that's what happened for the women in South Africa.

I see my art as—Making the Wonderous Real.

See the Book

Book 2

Recent Memory Cloths

Essay by Karen McLaughlin