PVD is the code for Rhode Island’s TF Green airport and is often used as a diminutive for the capital city, Providence. Though Leslie does not live in Providence anymore, it is still a big part of her identity. As such, Leslie Friedman’s alter-ego, LesliePVD, embodies three of the values that permeate the rich printmaking culture of Providence, Rhode Island: the appreciation of industrial craft, the belief in DIY/punk ethos, and the acknowledgment of the political and social historical significance of prints in promoting civil liberties. While she does not live in Providence, it is still her hometown.
The moniker LesliePVD was chosen back in the late 90’s when AOL instant messenger and fun, catchy email addresses were all the rage. When she started making screen-prints, it seemed logical that she should use her screen-name. In the gig poster world, printmakers tend to go by some kind of handle, so the name was gained traction. LesliePVD came out at night, wheat-pasted her charms around Providence, and sneaked away before getting noticed. Over the years, three different iterations of her a “chop” were introduced: a circle logo, a black cat, and finally an owl. The owl still appears in some of her editions, but for the most part all chops have disappeared and Leslie’s work has shifted more into installation.
So is LesliePVD dead and gone now that Leslie has moved away? No. Did she fall by the wayside as Leslie’s interest turned from posters to fine art? Not one bit. LPVD is always at the heart, the foundation, and the spirit of everything Leslie Friedman does (even if she only comes out night when Leslie needs to be very, very sneaky).