Lesley Heller Gallery proudly presents Superimposition, Fran Siegel’s third solo exhibition with the gallery. Superimposition focuses on an interplay between two diverse maritime sites. Chronicling the massive new bridge construction at the largest US commercial shipping port near her Los Angeles studio, Siegel pairs this imagery with that culled from the ancient burial mounds on the Gulf Coast’s Manasota Key—which she discovered and researched during a Hermitage Fellowship there in 2016.
The works in Superimposition build a dialog of intricate and intertwined structures laden with cultural, ceremonial and industrial significance. Suspended like elaborate embroidered tapestries, the Rig series is a layered patchwork of information. Cyanotype sun exposures reveal ghostly under-structures of indigenous plant-life, overlaid with drawings of sprawling urban construction. The rig itself represents a temporary industrial structure imposed on a resistant native land. A relationship of exchange emerges between image sources, cultural histories and viewpoints. Protrusions extend outward from the wall as the drawing splays onto chairs, tails, and strings. These material permutations are further confronted in a series of woven paper-maché wall reliefs in impermanent states between construction and deconstruction, solid and void.
Fran Siegel (b. New York) is known for her sprawling collaged and spatial constructions which are deeply rooted in an investigation of place through the activity of drawing. Siegel’s monumental works have recently been acquired by LACMA, the LA Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Yale University Art Gallery.
Last year her solo drawing project was presented at The UCLA Fowler Museum in coordination with the Getty city-wide initiative PST- LA/LA—which included a Fulbright award to Brazil. Siegel represented the United States in the IX International Biennial of Cuenca, Ecuador and was commissioned for a permanent installation at the US consulate in Guayaquil, Ecuador. She is currently developing permanent artwork for the LA Metro. This fall several major works will be featured at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery in the exhibition Here. Siegel was included in Slash at the Museum of Art and Design and Extravagant Drawing at Dorsky Curatorial Projects. In Los Angeles she has shown with ACME, LA Louver, and Roberts and Tilton. Siegel’s 2013/14 solo drawing project Translocation and Overlay at The Art, Design and Architecture Museum at UC Santa Barbara was a study of environmental and population shifts, and the subject of a feature article in X-TRA Contemporary Art Quarterly.
Notable press includes an artist profile in The Los Angeles Times, and reviews in The New York Times, Art in America, ArtCritical, ARTnews, Artillery, The Brooklyn Rail, The Boston Globe, LA Weekly, and Sculpture. Siegel is the recipient of a California Community Foundation Mid-career Artist Grant, the City of Los Angeles Individual Artist Fellowship, and the OC Contemporary Collectors Grant. Siegel earned her M.F.A. from Yale University School of Art, and B.F.A. from Tyler School of Art. She is currently a professor in The School of Art at California State University, Long Beach.