We met, June and I, at American Express. I knew she would be late, and I did not mind. I was there before the hour, almost ill with tenseness. I would see her, in full daylight, advance out of the crowd. Could it be possible? I was afraid that I would stand there exactly as I had stood in other places, watching a crowd and knowing no June would ever appear because June was a product of my imagination. I could hardly believe she would arrive by those streets, cross such a boulevard, emerge out of a handful of dark, faceless people, walk into that place. What a joy to watch that crowd scurrying and then to see her striding, resplendent, incredible, towards me. I hold her warm hand. She is going for mail. Doesn’t the man at American Express see the wonder of her? Nobody like her ever called for mail. Did any woman ever wear shabby shoes, a shabby black dress, a shabby dark blue cape, and a violet hat as she wears them?
Michelle Jane Lee’s art is minimalist in form yet muscular in content. There is a complexity, density; to put it simply, there is a lot of heart in her often times sparse drawings and paintings.
She is about going back to the moment of childhood possibility before our imaginations become impoverished and our options seemingly circumscribed. Her work reminds us that things could be different, if only we are brave enough to embrace the free fall, letting go of all of our prosthetics that keep us from realizing our freedom.