Anna Leigh Clem

The Perennial Garden (WIP)
Location: Cambridge, MA
Nationality: American
Biography: Anna Leigh Clem is a photo-based artist working with book arts, text, sculpture, and other media to explore and portray her unconscious ruminations. Compelled by the secret worlds inherent in memories, dreams, and childhood, her work aims to... read on
Public Story
The Perennial Garden (WIP)
Credits: anna leigh clem
Date of Work: 04/01/12 - 05/31/20
Updated: 05/04/20

My childhood home and its’ garden in Hoboken, New Jersey, which no longer exist physically, represent a sanctuary that I feel I have lost in adulthood. By excavating remembered stories, dreams, and family photographs, I have found that underneath the layers lies a deep desire for the refuge and freedom of imagination that I had in childhood and thought I would always have. It is this sense of loss with which I am grappling. In order to bring the pieces back together, my grownup imagination fills in the gaps like fresh mortar between old bricks. By collaging and altering the photographs and relics of my childhood and making surreal sculptures from found objects reminiscent of the house and its garden on Bloomfield Street, I represent the state of this place as it exists in my imagination.

Most recently, the creation of a book from these many threads has helped me parse out my discoveries into a visual narrative. Strewn throughout the book is my newest series of images, of interior windows, self-portraits, and my possessions, taken within my living room during the COVID-19 pandemic. These photographs represent an inner space that I am now seeding and cultivating, as I have found that the garden lives within me.

By Anna Leigh Clem —


Floating Petals

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2020) Handmade, one of a kind paper sculptures created from family photographs Pigment prints on cotton rag, set of 18, 8”x10” each My..

I walk to break free of the fear.

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2010-11) My accordion book I walk to break free of the fear. is an illustration of inner mind as sanctuary in the form of a walking meditation...

Floating Petals (book)

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2020) Handmade paper created from family photographs Pigment prints on cotton rag, artist's book, box is 10"x10.75" when closed..


By Anna Leigh Clem — (2017-2020) Statement coming soon.


By Anna Leigh Clem — (2016) I dive into the canyon and begin to fly. Never have I soared like this before, not since my last flying dream. An infinite expanse of..


By Anna Leigh Clem — (2012-2016) A hole has more presence than a filled spot, and I have come to notice a few. They are mysterious. How far down does it go, and where..

To be oneself completely

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2012-2014) When I step out the door to photograph, whether in my backyard or an unfamiliar landscape, my intentions are at first ambiguous. Like..

Where the Road Goes

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2011) While my stay in Ireland was brief, every passing moment soaked through to a heeding heart. It is here that I escape to now. Within this..


By Anna Leigh Clem — (2014) Teenage years are laden with fear, wonder, and self-doubt. In attempt to dissect that strange age as well as cope with my own bittersweet..

It will become something

By Anna Leigh Clem — (2011-12) As we move away from the purity of our births, we become complex and gnarled like trunks of trees. Underneath all the layers, the core..
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