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West and West Hill Streets
Nassau, N.P.
The Bahamas

(242) 328-5800

Bahamian art: Presenting. Uniting. Educating.

Artist Directory

Lilian Blades

NAGB

Lillian Blades (b. 1973) was born on New Providence, The Bahamas. 

Education

She began her art education at The College of The Bahamas, receiving The Chris Blackwell Junkanoo Scholarship. Blades received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1996 from the Savannah College of Art and Design and a Master’s of Fine Arts from Georgia State University in 2000. She completed a residency at the Caversham Centre for Artists and Writers in KwaZulu Natal Province, South Africa. She also studied at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine and Caversham in KwaZulu Natal South Africa.

Career

Her artwork has appeared in solo and group exhibitions throughout the United States, The Bahamas, Trinidad, Germany and South Africa. Her fine art has been commissioned for Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and The East Atlanta Library and is in the collection of the Birmingham Museum of Art and the National Art Gallery of The Bahamas.

Artist’s statement: “I found it more challenging and thought provoking to find items from everyday life to use as a medium to work with rather than implying with paint. The implications and associations of meaning I feel are stronger with actual objects and their juxtapositions with/on another. The process of gathering objects that carry connotations stimulates my creative process. I take note of the relationship formed and use it as the theme of the quilted assemblage. The process of assembling celebrated the beauty of how our mothers used utilitarian and decorative objects throughout the home as shrines or altars of every day living. I love the sincere ‘make do’ quality of assembling.”

STUDIO 

“Mixed-media” versus “multimedia” There is an important distinction between “mixed-media” artworks and “multimedia art”. Mixed-media, in visual art, refers to an artwork in the making of which more than one medium has been employed. In mixed-media works, there is often a combination of various traditionally distinct visual art media. 

For example, a work on canvas that combines paint, ink and collage could properly be called a “mixed-media work, but not a work of “multimedia art. The term “multimedia” implies a broader scope than mixed-media, combining visual art with non-visual elements (such as recorded sound, for example) or with elements of the other arts (such as literature, drama, dance, motion graphics, music or interactivity).

Sculpture

Sculpture is the art or practice of shaping figures or designs in the round or in relief, as by chiseling marble, modeling clay or casting in metal. 

Sculpture as an art form goes back to prehistoric times. Most Stone Age statuettes were made of ivory or soft stone, however some clay human and animal figures have been found. Small female statues known as Venus figurines have been found mainly in central Europe. The Venus of Willendorf (24,000-22,000 BC), from the area of Willendorf, Austria, is a well-known example.

DISCUSSION 

Symbolism is often present in Blades’ work. Symbolism in art is when an artist uses an object to represent another person, idea, place or thing. 

Blades’ use of frames with her work signifies the existence of memory or the loss of memory. Another example is the use of the quilting and cloth that remains her of her mother, a seamstress.

What objects remind you of a past experience, individuals, family, love ones or other objects that provoke emotions or memories? For example, a seashell can remind you of your experience in learning how to swim.

Have the students collect normal objects that they can add in their artwork that have metaphoric meaning.

Thanks to the Sandler Hudson website.

Lilian Blades Things to come, 2003 Mixed assemblage, 78” x 78” x 3” National Collection

Lilian Blades
Things to come, 2003
Mixed assemblage, 78” x 78” x 3”
National Collection