Searching for a New Normal
2022 Members Exhibition



Sheila Benedis

I majored in math in college and developed a love of art and poetry later in life. I started my art career making baskets, which turned into sculptures, went on to installations and now make artist books, which incorporate my poetry. I've exhibited my art widely in US and have been reviewed in NYTimes.

Tree Apparel

During the pandemic I wrote a poem "Tree Apparel".  I relate the tree's apparel, its leaves, to the tree's true feelings.  The tree feels power and glory in winter's nakedness.  As spring descends, there is radiant flower blooming, still content with minimal covering of authentic life.  It. descends into summer darkness with full leaf cover, has lost its life force.  It revives in the fall after a brilliant show of color, happily sheds its leaves.  I make an accordion book incorporating the poem to capture tree’s true essence.  I’ve included four images,  01 whole, 03 winter, 04 spring and summer, 05 fall. 

Accordion book, Collage, calligraphy, paper, poem, acrylic paint

Celebration of Creativity

During the pandemic I celebrated the natural world and my compulsion to create art.  I experienced self discovery, social interaction, growth, and positive social change.  Creativity heals myself, the world.  This is my new normal.   “Celebration of Creativity” is my altered artist book, which includes my poem of the same name.  I've included four page spreads.

Altered book, collage, acrylic paint, poem, paper


The pandemic made me more aware of the spirit of the natural world, how the magnolia tree carries on its normal progression and disregards COVID.   This is a modified accordion book about the magnolia tree and includes my poem "Accomplishment", which shows my positive reaction to its beauty.  Picture 1 is the whole book, picture 2 first half of book, picture 3 second half.

Accordion book, acrylic paint, prints, poem, collage