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Item Name: Painting
Title: Life Force in Two Realms (the social and the spiritual)
Maker: Leesa Streifler
Year: 2008
Country: Canadian
Materials: acrylic on paper
Measurements: overall: 75.5 cm x 110 cm
ID Number: PC2008.6

Extended Label Info: Exploring often intense emotional and psychological experiences, Leesa Streifler uses painting, drawing, text and photography in her artwork to critically examine her life. A strong feminist, she is interested in examining the social roles and expectations that her culture places on women. Over the past four decades, her work has addressed the body in all its stages and glory: the pregnant body, the aging body, the domesticated body, the irregular body, and the body in costume, using dressing up (and cross-dressing) in various forms. This painting is part of a series of portraits that express Streifler’s inner life, and uses expressionistic colour and brushstrokes to depict a duality of the social and spiritual experience. Leesa Streifler (1957- ) was born in Winnipeg. She earned a BFA Honours from the University of Manitoba (1980). Moving to New York City, Streifler earned her MFA from Hunter College, at NYU (1983). In 1986, Streifler returned to Canada to work as a Professor of drawing and painting at the University of Regina in Visual Arts. Streifler’s research focused on contemporary explorations in painting, drawing, text, and photography. A strong feminist, her work investigates the impact of social and cultural beliefs and practices on women’s identity. Her subject matter is the body in all its stages: the pregnant body, the aging body, the domesticated body, the irregular body, and the body in costume. She has also created work on interspecies communication, familial relationships, and aging. Retiring in 2019, Streifler returned to her studio practice in Winnipeg. Streifler’s artwork has exhibited internationally and is included in major public collections including the Canada Council Art Bank and the National Gallery of Canada.