Anna Leigh Clem

Photo-based Artist
    
The Perennial Garden
Location: Marblehead, MA
Nationality: American
Biography: Anna Leigh Clem  is an artist who works with photography, text, book arts, video, sculpture, and other media to investigate the nature of ephemerality. Compelled by the ineffable secrets embedded in memories, dreams, and childhood, her work... MORE
Public Story
The Perennial Garden
Copyright Anna Leigh Clem 2022
Updated Jul 2021
Location Somerville, MA
Topics Beauty, Children, Conceptual, Dreams, Emotion, Events, Fear, Fine Art, Happiness, Isolation, Joy, Landscape, Loss, Mixed Medium, Multimedia, Photography, Portraiture, Still life, Yearning, Youth
(2016–21)
Installation of pigment prints, altered prints, and found/altered objects

My childhood home on Bloomfield Street no longer exists. Although it was just an ordinary building with a backyard garden in Hoboken, New Jersey, it was a sanctuary to me, a place of magic and imagination. With my childhood haven literally razed and replaced, I find myself returning there in my mind, and in my work, searching for what has been lost in adulthood. Underneath the layers of time lies a deep desire for the refuge and freedom of imagination that I thought I would always have. By excavating remembered stories, dreams, found objects and family photographs, I give form to my fascination with this yearning.

The Perennial Garden includes prints of my childhood house and garden as seen on Google Maps, collaged family photos with ruptured surfaces, surreal sculptures made with bricks and other detritus, photographs with flaking emulsion, and self-portraits in my present-day living room. The series chronicles my gazing back at the past, cloaked in its golden glow, obsessing over preservation, questioning the photograph’s role as a crutch for memory, and finally embracing the medium as a way back to imagination, as the process of making art is my present-day sanctuary.
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Tucked into the Garden Bed

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Blue Cento

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The Rings of My Limbs

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Floating Petals - book

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The Perennial Garden (book) WIP

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Turning

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shapeshifter

Anna Leigh Clem / Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona
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Holes

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To be oneself completely

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Where the Road Goes

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grounded

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It will become something

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