Nava Lubelski was born and raised in New York City and currently lives in Asheville, NC. Lubelski has had recent solo shows at LMAKprojects in New York and at OH&T Gallery in Boston and her work was recently included in exhibitions at the Museum of Arts & Design in Manhattan, the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, NC and the Queens Museum of Art in Queens, NY, where her work is part of the permanent collection. Lubelski was the recipient of a Pollock-Krasner Foundation grant in 2008 and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship Grant in 2005. She was Artist-in-Residence at CUE Art Foundation in New York City and McColl Center for Visual Art in Charlotte, NC in 2007. Lubelski received a degree in Russian Literature & History from Wesleyan University and spent a year as a student in Moscow, Russia.
Feminist Artist Statement
My work engages a variety of materials and techniques, focusing on hybridizing notions of masculine/feminine, art/craft, painting/sculpture.
Among the works included is Clumsy, a piece created from a tablecloth that was stained with red wine at an art foundation benefit. The spill was “repaired” by embroidering around the wine stain, the intention being to acknowledge the event, mistaken or not, that created the mark and to take this error as a starting point for further work.
Also included is [a cast of my left hand in the shape of a] Glove, a piece that uses thread to cast the form of my left hand through the efforts of the free hand. The piece plays with the obstacle of sewing with literally, “one hand tied” and allows improvisational stitching and the results of awkwardness and inconvenience to cast the body part. The finished piece is one of a series of struggling and imperfect versions of traditionally hyper-perfect Victorian lace gloves. The pieces maintain the delicate, yet clumsy shapes of ghost hands, at once appearing as flawed and decaying relics, while in fact being molded from the physical hand.
My embroidery works on canvas explore the contradictions between the impulse to destroy and the compulsion to mend. I juxtapose rapid acts of destruction, such as spilling and cutting, with painstaking, restorative labor. Embroideries are hand-stitched over stains and rips, contrasting the accidental with the meticulous, constructing narrative from randomness and mistake. The initial marks are found on linens or are created by cutting and staining canvas. The work scrambles expressions of aggression with masochistic patience and sublimation and plays with the feminine through the graphic form of the “stain” and the adding of peek-a-boo, lace inlays to repair cut holes that expose the hidden space behind the canvas.