'A Masterful Exhibition', The Press, Christchurch, Jamie Hanton,
March 4, 2009

Marie Le Lievre’s paintings are at their core a celebration of paint and the painted surface. Yet while Le Lievre’s bags are luscious, layered works they ultimately challenge the superficial.

The term “baggage” is often used in a derogatory psychological sense, as in “he/she has too much baggage - too many issues”. Le Lievre exposes the sometimes painful nature of carrying such baggage with vulnerability and sensitivity. Her bags are painted with the abandon of a cathartic confession.

Yet the awkwardness is captured in the colours she chooses. Swamp greens, fleshy pinks, and faecal browns and bleed into each other. Bubbling and cracking surfaces portray the emotional toll of troubled memories threatening to break through.

Having achieved success with the baggage paintings, where Le Lievre’s practice goes from this point will be an intriguing journey to follow.