Curator‘s Comments

Lesley Dill began to fuse her interest in words and sculpture during the early 1990s, creating three-dimensional paper forms (often clothing) perforated by lines of text. These human surrogates quickly evolved, bearing ribbons of text that spilled from both the interior and exterior, as in Paper Poem Torso. Dill’s use of Emily Dickinson’s poetry as source material supports the emotional tenor of her work: they are fragile, yet accessible, and both raw and guarded.

Exhilaration is within
There can no Outer Wine
So royally intoxicate
As that diviner Brand
The Soul achieves Herself
To drink or set away
For Visitor Or Sacrament
'Tis not of Holiday
To stimulate a Man
Who hath the Ample Rhine
Within his Closet Best you can
Exhale in offering.

Emily Dickinson #383

Lesley Dill. American, Born 1950

Paper Poem Torso (Exhilaration Is Within), 1993

Mixed media with thread on rice paper

Purchased with the Janet Wright Ketcham, class of 1953, Acquisition Fund

ID Number: SC 1994:16