Lesli Robertson


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Lesli Robertson
About the author

Lesli Robertson is an interdisciplinary artist whose studio work and research focuses on textiles and their link to identity, making, and value. Collaboration and community inform her studio practice; each bringing an element of connection and understanding to the work she creates. Robertson works on international collaborative projects, developing connections between diverse communities and artists through international programs focused on art, community, and material culture. From 2008-2011, she worked on a three phase project with the University of North Texas Art Gallery focused on Ugandan bark cloth. This project was in collaboration with numerous participants: faculty from Makerere University, local Ugandan artists, Let Art Talk, elementary schools in Texas and Uganda, and BARK CLOTH© Uganda. The UNT Fine Arts Series, Texas Commission on the Arts, and the UNT Institute for the Advancement of the Arts funded this project which began with arts in education workshops in the US and Uganda, and concluded with Material Evolution: Ugandan Bark Cloth, an exhibition which highlighted work by an international group of artists and designers. Additional work in Uganda resulted in articles on their cultural arts published in leading journals, and in 2013, she was an innovator advisor to Bark Cloth Ltd. at the LAUNCH Forum, a collaboration between NIKE, NASA, USAID, and the US State Department. From 2009 to 2010, Robertson was the inaugural Visiting Artist at the Dallas Museum of Art’s Center for Creative Connections, where her Community Partner Response artwork was on exhibit in 2010; a project involving over 500 active participants in hands on workshops. The resulting exhibition, Woven Records, included an installation and two interactive looms that museum visitors wove on. In 2012, she co-launched The Mother Load, a participatory artwork and project engaging with over 100 artists from 10 countries on the intersection of motherhood and art. This project was exhibited at the Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas, Texas (2014-2015), and the Hannah McClure Centre, Dundee, Scotland (2016). This ongoing initiative has produced installation based artwork and is now evolving into a publication on how you define success a mother/artist. Most recently, she was a Fulbright Specialist in Kuwait with the Al Sadu House, (2015-2016). Over three visits, she co-curated an interactive exhibition titled Weaving Stories, engaging with the community to learn about the textile arts of Kuwait. In additional to interactive sculptural work, this exhibition included the development of a series of workshops, lectures, and educational resources. This project was supported by the US Embassy and Kuwaiti National Council of Art, Letters, and Culture. This collaborative work directly informs her artwork, challenging her to involve and engage the community in the development of installation and sculptural works. She continues to work on independent artworks while developing interdisciplinary project based works, exhibiting these in solo and group exhibitions nationally and internationally. Robertson has lectured and participated in numerous international events and conferences including the Qurain Cultural Festival in Kuwait, European League of the Institute of the Arts, Textile Society of America Symposia, and many more. In addition, Robertson has received grants from the Dallas Museum of Art, the Surface Design Association, the Textile Society of America, and a faculty fellowship with the UNT IAA in support of her artwork and research. She currently serves on the Board of the Textile Society of America.