“Cherie Saleeby’s installations evoke the meditative mood traditionally associated with churches and cathedrals, while simultaneously posing questions about the role of spiritual beliefs in our world today. Saleeby tackles ages-old issues, like the human fear of falling short of God’s mark. In her piece Angels, Including The Fallen, the tragic notion of 133,306,668 cast-out angels from “Revelation 12” is embodied in spatial terms by several sculpted wings seen “floating during descent” along a gallery wall, give the illusion of softness one would associate with ethereal beings. Saleeby is attracted to the use of “fragments, which speak of the missing elements in life, a metaphor for unanswered questions about this plane of existence. When several of her pieces correspond in a single space the intent is to cultivate in the viewer an active reflection on the passage of time. ”
Jude Schwendenwien New York City
Contributing critic for Artforum, Artnews, and Sculpture Magazine.
“Cherie Saleeby’s love and respect for the conservative tradition in sculpture means she can be especially adventurous and daring when she works from fresh attitudes and vantage points. She uses the vehicle of traditional beauty even while following a through modern impulse to take things apart and meditate on their components and origins. In a line-up of three portrait busts, Punto, Linea and Awakening, ostensibly likenesses of young boys, what is really being depicted is aspects of Saleeby’s process, revealed by tool marks. She is also showing, states of consciousness – the third boy is shown in a dreamlike state. Dynamism is the operative word for Saleeby, as her physically obdurate sculptures are caught in passage from one state to another.
This artist thinks in grand terms; she spins visual tales and has collaborated with musicians. She has told the compelling story of Carrie Aude, the mysterious wife of one of her ancestors, in drawings as well as sculpture. In art povera fashion she exalts humble tar, (for Carrie Aude’s story entails sticky and difficult emotions). She tantalizingly alternates it with black marble. Saleeby has ascended to the spiritual one in a large series of marble wings belonging to fallen angels. This is no necessarily a negative state; Saleeby writes that the mystery of angels “transcends the logic of existence.”
Once again it is a universe of dramatic shifts – dynamism – that characterizes Cherie Saleeby’s elegiac yet unexpectedly witty, relevant yet transcendent art.”
New York City
Contributing critic for The New York Times
“Cherie Saleeby’s bronze Femme, a torso as minimalistically pleasing as a vintage Jean Arp creation.”
Art writer for the Sun-Sentinel
“Speaking of Cherie Saleeby, how deep into her own private emotional space is she going to go? Last year her “traditional” polished marble sculptures of classic female shapes, all curves, shapes and line were a centerpiece of the XS fourth annual Best of the Gallery. At the Coral Springs Museum of Art grand opening this past February, it was cast stone angel wings, mounted on painted steel plates, floating on a stark white wall. Recently, at the MONA Spring Invitational at ArtServe, she showed a schizophrenic mix of sensuous, fluid, comforting shapes sculpted from tar and nail studded, brittle sharp-edged and angular assemblages that were deliberately unsettling but way cool. I defied anyone at the opening that night to resist the primordial urge to run their hands over the comforting curves of “Transformation.” Well, Saleeby will have no comfort conundrum to deal with in this exhibit. In “Easy Chair”, she skewers convention and impales the back and seat of a traditional, typical middle-American icon: a floral print barc-like-a-dog-o-lounger, which to me reads as Ozzie and Harriet homey as homey gets, with dozens of very sharp, very oversize aluminum knitting needles. The work is striking and effective. It brings violence and domesticity face to face. Saleeby merely says, “Comfort in the home cannot be taken for granted.” Ouch. The seat of power appears quite uncomfortable, indeed.
Art Critic, XS Magazine
“Easy Chair’ by Cherie Saleeby is anything but easy. This powerful mixed media object has been constructed by impaling an upholstered armchair with aluminum knitting needles. The sharpness of the needles forces us to confront this violence. An ordinary chair becomes elevated to a provocative, tactile statement subverting domestic harmony. Best work, nothing can be taken for granted.”
Wendy M. Blazier,
Among the artists who participated in the group project was Cherie Saleeby, of Pompano Beach. Saleeby also created a sculpture specifically for the show. Saleeby’s sculpture is a recliner pierced from top to bottom with long, steel knitting needles.
Art Critic, Sun-Sentinel
“My work comes from the spirit identified with women. My forms of female torso’s are in transition. They are universal, faceless, fluid forms. Often fragments of the feminine body with expression and aesthetic power of their own.” says Cherie Lee Saleeby of her work – transforming solid blocks of marble into three dimensional female forms. Cherie spends her summers in Pietrasanta in northern Italy, selecting and sculpting marble which she completes in her Boca Raton studio. She says, “I strive to create a balance in the sculptures’ compositional relationships, and include a modern abstraction to these gestures.”
Today’s Boca Woman News Magazine
“Artists’ that work without social guarantee renew tradition and in turn find tradition.”
Cherie Saleeby 1996