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Charles LeDray: workworkworkworkwork

Nov 18, 2010–Feb 13, 2011

Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Overcoat, 2004. Fabric, wood, metal, paint, plastic, and thread, 25 × 20 × 11 in. (64.8 × 50.8 × 27.9 cm). Collection of Tom and Alice Tisch, New York. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Flip Flops, 2006. Foam rubber, epoxy resin, epoxy dye, embroidery floss, steel, 13 ¾ x 7 ½ x 4 5/8 inches (34.9 × 19 × 11.75 cm). Collection John McEnroe. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater

Over the past twenty years, New York-based sculptor Charles LeDray (b. 1960, Seattle) has created a highly distinctive and powerful body of work using such materials as sewn cloth, carved human bone, and glazed ceramics. This major survey, which includes works from the 1980s to the present, celebrates both the artist’s virtuosity with materials and his uncanny manipulation of scale to create seemingly familiar objects that engage the collective memory. His techniques of sewing, carving bone, and throwing clay pots find precedents in the traditions of folk art and visionary art, yet rise to a level of unprecedented virtuosity and artistic invention. The exhibition is curated by Randi Hopkins for the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston. Its Whitney installation will be overseen by curator Carter Foster.

Works from the Exhibition

Charles LeDray (b.1960), Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, 1993. Fabric, wire, vinyl, silkscreen, zipper, 26 ¾ x 54 inches (67.9 × 137.2 cm) overall. Private Collection, Houston, TX. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b.1960), Catcher’s Vest, 2005–2006. Fabric, thread, cotton batting, leather, elastic, grosgrain ribbon, metal, metal patina, wood, wood stain, paint, 14 ¾ x 8 ¼ x 2 ¾ inches (37.5 × 21 × 7 cm). The Cartin Collection. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Charles, 1995. Fabric, thread, metal, plastic, paint, 19 × 14 × 4 ½ inches (48.3 × 35.6 × 11.4 cm). Collection of Barbara and Leonard Kaban. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Charly/Chas, 1999–2002. Fabric, thread, embroidery floss, leather, metal, metal patina, gold plating, screws, plastic, fiber glass, epoxy resin, epoxy dye, elastic, masking tape, wood, pencil lead, cardboard, paper, ink, 29 × 14 × 9 inches (73.7 × 35.6 × 22.5 cm). Collection of Eileen and Michael Cohen, New York. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Come Together, 1995–1996. Fabric, thread, embroidery floss, steel, 34 1/2 × 26 × 6 1/2 inches (87.63 × 66.04 × 16.51 cm). Collection San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Purchased through a gift of Kimberly S. Light. Photograph by Ian Reeves
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Cricket Cage, 2002. Human bone, 3 3/8 × 3 3/8 × 1 7/16 inches (8.6 × 8.6 × 3.7 cm). Private collection, United. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Toy Chest, 2005–2006. Wood, wood stain, shellac, decal, cardboard, wire, metal, metal patina, gold-plated chain, screws, nails, wax crayon, paint, ink, epoxy resin, fabric, synthetic fur, leather, vinyl, thread, embroidery floss, ribbon, yarn, string, sisal fiber waxed with paraffin, sawdust, 8 ¼ x 13 × 5 5/8 inches (21 × 33 × 14.3 cm). Collection of Katherine and Keith L. Sachs, Rydal, PA. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater
Charles LeDray (b. 1960), Flip Flops, 2006. Foam rubber, epoxy resin, epoxy dye, embroidery floss, steel, 13 ¾ x 7 ½ x 4 5/8 inches (34.9 × 19 × 11.75 cm). Collection John McEnroe. Photograph by Tom Powel. Courtesy of Sperone Westwater

The most comprehensive review of a remarkable contemporary artist’s work in an extraordinary package designed by Sagmeister, Inc. Since the early 1990s, New York–based artist Charles LeDray has become known for his miniaturized sculptures of hand-stitched clothing, carved human bone, and thimble-sized ceramics. Their intimate scale and materials poignantly evoke allusions to childhood memory, gender and class stereotypes, and wonder in the everyday

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In the News

Review: “His magical retrospective … is dumbfounding. That one man could have singlehandedly created all these things defies credibility.”
The New York Times

Review: “Some of the richest, most touching and witty art I have seen in a long while”
The Financial Times

Review: “The artist uses tiny scale to monumental effect.”
Time Out New York

“Men’s Suits emerges from the darkness like a vivid dream.”
T Magazine/The New York Times

Every element in his work is created practically from scratch by hand—artificially aged fabrics, tiny metal and plastic hangers, doll-sized ladders, and miniature porcelain pots.”
Artnet

The Approval Matrix: “minature-vintage-clothing art”
New York

“With his sometimes diminutive, meticulously made objects . . . the New York artist Charles LeDray thinks giant thoughts.”
The New York Times

“you might just think you stumbled onto the set for Gulliver’s Travels.”
The Village Voice

Charles LeDray’s incredible miniatures hold big interest for kids.”
Time Out New York Kids

an enthralling, meticulous solo show”
WNYC Culture Blog