Lori Solley is a full-time instructor at Kilgore College. She received her MFA in printmaking from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX and a BFA from the University of Texas at Tyler in 2-dimensional art. Her work consists primarily of combinations of drawing, printmaking, and collage techniques. She has exhibited nationally and regionally. She was recently selected as Top 5 shows to see in Texas in September 2022 by Glasstire. She is a native of Gladewater, TX, and lives in East Texas with her husband, two kids, and many pets.


As a mother, wife, educator, and individual, I navigate daily decisions and compromises to cultivate a personal identity while nurturing others. Yet, the perceived truth often conceals an illusion imposed upon us by societal ideals. Certain aspects of myself become stifled, controlled, or invisible depending on the identity I inhabit. I am both seen and unseen. The demands of maternal perfection, shaped by both past and contemporary societal expectations, are grueling, exhausting, and often masked by a carefully constructed illusion, one I frequently struggle to uphold.

My drawings serve as a visual exploration of the diverse roles I embody and their impact on my identity. Utilizing traditional drawing materials alongside alternative options, I focus on images of my hands as a common thread linking self and caregiver, mother and artist.

Traditional drawing materials meet non-traditional elements, and only a fragment of myself is revealed, emphasizing the contrast between the choices and compromises made. The incorporation of embroidery as the final layer in my drawings intentionally introduces imperfection, freeing me from the pursuit of a perfect mark. Once a stitch is made, I have to commit and move forward.

The combination of traditional and non-traditional materials, nostalgic patterns, figurative imagery, and the interplay of soft and hard-edged values seeks to illuminate the fabricated roles crafted within one's self. Shadows and light, craft materials alongside traditional ones, geometric and organic imagery create a chasm between the complex and hidden inner truths and the artifices created for one’s self.

In contemplating the roles, I inhabit, I've come to recognize that I am all of these roles simultaneously and occasionally none of them. Yet, who am I without them? This question propels me to re-examine the valuation of women, our lives, and our experiences. I aim to sometimes peel back, hide, or enhance the layers of societal constructs, offering a fresh perspective on the value inherent in the diverse roles women play and the richness of their experiences.