Alice Leora Briggs

October 6 - November 25, 2017

Helen DeVitt Jones Studio Gallery


Alice Leora Briggs’ new suite of 12 woodcuts is an homage to Mark Strand, 1990 U.S. Poet Laureate and forms the core of her exhibition titled, The Room.

The University of Arizona and Yale University purchased The Room Suite earlier this year. It is now under consideration by The Library of Congress.


I was born in an oil boomtown in the West Texas Panhandle and grew up in Idaho’s Snake River Valley. I have lived most of my life in the blurred regions near borders, between nations or close to the wavering lines that separate spheres of knowledge. I am the daughter of a chemical engineer who one day woke up as a consummate violinmaker.

Collaborations with writers have been an important facet of my work since 2005. Rather than illustrate texts, I create works that respond to and resonate with the voices of writers.

Beginning in 1993, I corresponded off and on with U.S. Poet Laureate Mark Strand. I always felt I was on the verge of creating images that could stand beside his words. After three failed attempts, this notion became a standing joke that I told only to myself. I once wrote to Mark that I did not understand his poems, but could not stay away from them. He replied that this was reasonable, “that love comes first, then understanding.”

Several decades later, I turned my back for a moment and one of Strand’s poems bled into my work. THE ROOM became my geography. In 2016, I co-published with Flatbed Press a suite of 12 woodcuts that incorporate the 12 lines of THE ROOM and pay homage to the man who wrote them.

Alice Leora Briggs
Boston Printmakers 2017 North American Biennial.