Lesley Hilling is an established artist living and working in Brixton, south London. She was originally trained and worked as a graphic designer, with her practice gradually evolving to visual arts.
Working predominantly with found and recycled materials, often not just wood, but pieces of glass, camera lenses, vintage photographs, Hilling carefully selects, paints and a...ssembles numerous pieces into large complex compositions. Old furniture and pianos come alive again in intricate constructions, and her delicate craftsmanship only stresses more the longing for the world lost.
Hilling’s acutely detailed wooden sculptures serve as archives to the endless memories the objects, they were once parts of, contain. Nostalgia and the feeling of longing for the times past are the driving forces behind Lesley’s art practice.
‘I like seeing the work grow organically, ultimately my work is intuitive. There is a sadness in my work, a sense of loss for a time past; certain objects resonate with me, like old photographs, cigarette cards and old clock workings - they are the things I played with as a child.’
With her more recent works, which are bolder in colour and more rigid in structure, Hilling pays homage to her past as a graphic designer and takes a move towards abstraction. Focusing on the grid, that is at the core of each of her works, she speaks of modern day capitalist society as a system that keeps societies in place, economically and socially.
‘When I start a piece of work I often begin by building a grid-like structure that eventually will hold the construction together. The end piece will be wild and obsessive and bear no relation to the grid – but its there all the same! The grid gives me something to work with, a starting point and reference. It’s like the steady beat of the music while the tunes weave around it.’
Hilling exhibited widely in the UK and abroad in private and public galleries. She received several prized through the years including the Aesthetica Art Prize show in 2017 and 2015.