Ilene Berman is a St. Louis-based sculptor with a durational arts practice aimed at addressing issues of social justice. Her practice is based on her belief that art can (and should) change the world. She understands change to be the result of small shifts often expressed through simple artful gestures. For the past seven years Ilene’s practice has primarily been focused on seeking to address St. Louis’ Delmar Divide by developing a more visible arts presence in the blocks of the Grand Center Arts District, north of Delmar.
NODhouse celebrates the creative makers of St. Louis, north of Delmar, while simultaneously critiquing the institutional neglect of those makers. NOD is both an acronym for North Of Delmar and the word 'nod' itself, the gesture we use to acknowledge each other.
On December 4, 2013, NODhouse launched Room13Delmar: a sculpture in the form of a tricycle-based mobile art studio to be used north of Delmar. Room13Delmar is designed to function on the sidewalk for the purpose of creating playful spaces for people to be visibly public together.
The work created in Ilene’s studio practice is both a conversation between herself and the people she creates with in her social practice, as well as a conversation between herself and the larger public. She uses her sensitivity to materials and processes to position the viewer within her considered conflict.