ECA+ Creative Member Directory
Mapping the Arts in Easthampton, Southampton, & Westhampton


Leslie Tane


Curation and Graphic Design

I believe in curation as graphic design. Graphic design is a method of sending a message through a visual medium. The role of graphic designer also encompasses the artist as curator. Maker, editor, contextualizer: the designer/curator communicates a point of view through a selected group of objects and is visually thought provoking using the medium of physical artifact.

In October 2013 I received my Masters in Fine Arts in Graphic Design. My course of study revolved around curation and curatorial studies through the lens of graphic design and I participated in four gallery exhibitions during my grad school tenure, curating and exhibiting work in each. I am currently a Senior Designer at New Chapter, Inc. in Brattleboro, Vermont. Prior to that, I owned my own graphic design business for 14 years. Leslie Tane Design was an award-winning full-service graphic design firm specializing in creative solutions for print and web design. I was responsible for supervising a staff that included one full time production assistant and between three to six contract employees. Along with my curatorial and graphic design skills, my technical skills include Adobe Creative Suite, HTML, CSS, Wordpress, print production, and social media applications. Additionally, I have taught on both the high-school and college levels, which I greatly enjoyed. Recently I volunteered in an after school arts class to get back in the classroom, and working with the students was fun and rewarding. I am licensed to teach 5-12 in Massachusetts.

After 20 years as a professional designer I recently received my MFA in Graphic Design from Vermont College of Fine Arts. My thesis explored the link between contemporary curatorial practice and graphic design through research, writing, and several exhibitions, including: Collective Collection, October 2013 Tasked with “curating love” through the mail, each contributor became a curator by adding an item to the collection, then sending it on to the next recipient/curator. The collection was accumulated literally and in real time — the one Collection box was sent to all contributors across the United States. Each item is accompanied by a story about the chosen object written by the contributor. In Your Absence: The Frames Project, October 2013 Two related but separate collections for In Your Absence — photos of children from the 1960s and earlier and a series of used and vintage picture frames in all shapes and sizes — are arranged randomly, severing the relationship between photo and frame. In Your Absence is a meditation on permanence and impermanence, the transitory nature of our lives and the longevity of the items we collect. Kindness Curation, October 2013 Using Facebook and online forums I asked “If kindness was a color, what would it be?” The exhibit features 99 helium balloons—one color for each answer. At the end of the balloon strings are origami mockingbirds made from folded dictionary pages in many languages, all of which include the word “kindness.” Veri, April 2013 Amateur photographs found on the internet paired with original writings. In removing the images from their intended contexts, the pieces were redefined through a mindful re-connection of content. Miniature World, October 2012 Three 1:12 scale roomboxes which curate the lives of their fictional occupants, illustrating the tension between what things look like and what they really mean.