Leidy Churchman: Crocodile

Copublished with CCS Bard in 2019
Edited by Lauren Cornell, Karen Kelly, and Barbara Schroeder. Text by Ruba Katrib, Alex Kitnick, and Arnisa Zeqo. Interview by Lauren Cornell.
Design by Tiffany Malakooti
144 pages, 95 color images, hardcover, 8 ¼ x 10 inches
ISBN: 978-0-9986326-9-8


Ranging from figurative representation to gestural abstraction, monumental landscape paintings to more intimate portraits, the oeuvre of American painter Leidy Churchman channels their artistic and literary influences, friendships, moods, surrounding landscapes and the visual iconography of divergent religions and philosophies. Crocodile highlights the artist’s investigations into consciousness in their renderings of anthropomorphic animals and psychological states, their appropriations of existing artworks and aesthetics, and their recastings of various signs and symbols. Churchman, who divides his time between New York and Maine, emerges here as a dynamic protagonist of contemporary American painting.

Praise and Press

Churchman seems to be painting as a way to better comprehend his subjects; the canvases feel like dedications, striving to embody someone or something’s true nature.

—Alex Jen, Hyperallergic

Crocodile (2016) is reproduced from the precise and beautifully designed catalog to painter Leidy Churchman’s first U.S. survey, at the Hessel Museum of Art, which was reviewed recently in Hyperallergic, where Alex Jen comments on their “beautiful peculiarity.” In a published interview in the book, Churchman tells Lauren Cornell, chief curator at CCS Bard, “When painting happens for me, it’s more like collecting caterpillars on a summer night, being both delighted and grossed out, or it’s driven by a desire to take care of something that is completely unknown.

—Cory Reynolds, ARTBOOK Blog

Here’s writer Alex Kitnick, in an essay about Churchman’s work in the Crocodile catalogue (a handsome new tome): “There are patterns here, just as there would be in an archive of web searches, but there is also a radical juxtaposition between things that are hard to make coherent. The shape of the constellation is big and diffuse.” And then: “His interest, I think, is less in burrowing into things and reading them than in moving around their edges. Once, someone might have called that superficial, but today it might be one way of sensing (not making sense of) the glut of the world.”

—Andy Battaglia, Art News

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