Painter and filmmaker Alfred Leslie was born in the Bronx, New York in 1927 and currently lives and works in Manhattan. In the late 1940s he emerged as an experimental filmmaker and a second generation Abstract Expressionist painter. In the 1950s and ’60s, he was associated with a community of avant-garde artists and writers, including Joan Mitchell, Larry Rivers, Robert Frank, Frank O’Hara, and Jack Kerouac, with whom he often collaborated. The quintessential Beat Generation film Pull My Daisy (1959) was co-directed by Leslie and photographer Robert Frank, with subtitles and narration by Jack Kerouac. In the early 1960s, Leslie's style evolved from pure abstraction to figurative realism, distilling his background in film to be fully realised through painting. Over the last 15 years, he has taken these interests one step further, incorporating them with new digital technology to create paintings on the computer, which he has named Pixel Scores.Read More
In 2018, Leslie was given the Lee Krasner Award in recognition of a lifetime of artist achievement, granted by The Pollock-Krasner Foundation. His most recent body of work, the Pixel Scores were the subject of a major solo exhibition, Alfred Leslie: One Hundred Characters in Search of a Reader, at the Blaffer Art Museum, University of Houston, Texas, from September 2018 through January 2019.
His work has been widely exhibited nationally and internationally and is included in the permanent collections of numerous institutions, including The Art Institute of Chicago, The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, Washington University in St. Louis, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, The National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., The Saint Louis Art Museum, The Walker Art Center, and The Whitney Museum of American Art.
Text courtesy Bruce Silverstein.
The artist Alfred Leslie is 90, but he acts decades younger. A recent conversation in his East Village studio had to wait while he finished fiddling with an image on his computer for a new project.