Lisa Nelson Raabe

Navigational Notes 2020:
...becalmed....adrift...


Heuser Gallery, Bradley University, Peoria,IL
November 2020

My work is a process of deciphering what it is to live in our time, to gain perspective, to see from differing angles in differing light. The light of day, inner light deep within, back lit....a search for hidden agenda, the truth beneath the surface within the context and felt sense of emotional memory.

These images are entries and insights created during the late spring through fall months of 2020. The work, some quite personal, some public is a casting about toward unraveling and exploring — what — how — why — I’m protecting myself in the face of contagion.

Navigating through a time of lock down? Boats presented here are vehicles that float on gentle breezes, defying gravity, but moving only circularly. Treasures and left over washed up debris hold memories serving to ground and anchor. The sea holds wordless vision.

The panels of natural material, collected during this often solitary time, are overlaid with acrylic mediums and fine papers. Hanging forms animate in space, becoming sails that lift and lighten. Horizontal scrolls hang away from walls responding to gravity, unreadable navigational tools. Other panels are skin like transparencies that reveal and conceal.

Now is distance and doing less, staying home and staying safe. This work rest into a space that allows uncertainty, the unseen and unknown a presence and ease.


Lisa Nelson Raabe has worked as an artist, art therapist and yoga therapist, delving into the relationships between our bodies, stored emotion, thoughts and memories. As a long time textile artist, much of Lisa’s work has to do repetitive forms and processes, stitch by stitch, moment by moment, the creation of pliable planes.

Lisa lives with her husband, poet and writer Burton Raabe and their cat Zorba.