Sheila Pepe

Sheila Pepe Hot Mess Formalism Exhibition
Photo Credit: Rachel Stern

Sheila Pepe is a cross-disciplinary artist employing conceptualism, surrealism, and craft to address feminist and class issues. Her most recent solo exhibition, Hot Mess Formalism, organized by the Phoenix Art Museum, traveled 2017 – 2019 to the Everson Museum of Art, Syracuse, NY; Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Omaha; and the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum, Lincoln, MA. A book with essays by Julia Bryan-Wilson, Elizabeth Dunbar, Lia Gangitano, and curator Gilbert Vicario accompanied the exhibition. Three more books, released 2019, that feature her work are Vitamin T: Threads, and Textiles in Contemporary Art, the revised Art and Queer Culture by Catherine Lord and Richard Meyer, (both published by Phaidon) and  Feminist Subjectivities in Fiber Art and Craft: Shadows of Affect by John Corso Esquivel  (Routledge). Pepe’s  work has also been included in many group exhibitions—from the first Greater New York at PS1/ MoMA; The 8th Shenzhen Sculpture Biennale; Fiber:Sculpture 1960- Present, organized by the ICA/Boston, to the current Queer Abstraction at the DesMoines Art Center.

 “Sheila Pepe: Hot Mess Formalism” installed at the Everson Museum, Syracuse, NY. 
This gallery includes drawings, tables of  “Votive Moderns” and “Red Hook at Bedford Terrace,” 2008, collection of the Smith Art Museum, Northampton, MA
Sheila Pepe Short Stack, 2017 wood, paint, and gloss medium 4 3/4 × 5 1/2 × 6 in. (12.1 × 14 × 15.2 cm)
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  1. […] Sheila Pepe is based in Brooklyn. She is preparing to participate in a show at the John Michael Kohler Art Center titled Even Thread has Speech for which she will create an installation in a solarium filled with plants. Pepe grew up surrounded by religious objects which she eventually realized were also sculpture. She has a strong interest in the origin of things and a lot of her work itself originates in home crafts she learned as a child. These crafts were intended to suit an assumed future lifestyle as wife and mother. Pepe identifies as an androgynous lesbian feminist and so the origins of much of her work have in fact yielded a far different result than was intended by the instructors. To hear more of her fascinating interview that intertwines religious iconography, queer culture and a discussion of the meaning and origin of objects, listen to the complete interview. […]