E-Squared Magazine
Art + Science | Culture

Monday, June 15th, 2020

Documenting the Silent Story of an Ecosystem w. Amanda Lebel

Inspired by her environment Amanda Lebel prints pochoirs that flourish with life. A former city-dweller, Lebel created works inspired by interiors but after moving to the countryside, her work shifted towards all things alive and natural. Reminiscent of wallpaper interiors, Lebel’s work focuses on native plant species and their importance in our ecosystem.

Full of vibrancy and realism, Amanda Lebel’s pochoirs lend themselves to that of classical botanical illustrations. Upon closer inspection though, something more is going on in her printed forms – she is also documenting the silent story of an ecosystem. While exquisite with color and life, another kind of life is taking over, that of invasive plant species. In her pochoirs, Lebel thoughtfully designs and prints the process of invasion. Native plants are depicted in individual prints to celebrate their color and form; invasive plants are depicted by double-layered prints or collages of repeat patterns like that of wallpaper to symbolize their ability to grow and overtake. With these story-telling pochoirs, Lebel evokes upon the viewer both a sense of beauty and overwhelm.

Amanda Lebel currently teaches painting and printmaking at Naugatuck Valley Community College. She is a highly-valued resource in the arts as she is trained in many areas of printmaking that are becoming a lost art. Lebel has received several grants and fellowships and exhibits her work regularly in the Northeast.