Leslie Plato Smith


Oakland-based and educated at UC Santa Barbara, Tulane, and UC Berkeley, Leslie Plato Smith spent much of her career as Associate Vice-Chancellor of Governmental Relations for City College of San Francisco. Highlights from her career include receiving a national award for bringing together 60 different art departments to create 125 life size statues to visually show how budget cuts negatively impact students and to fight for public education, and exhibiting at the European Cultural Centre’s Venice Biennale exhibition. She was the 2020 Spotlight Artist for the Richmond Art Center and has received numerous art awards. Plato Smith’s grandfather was born on the Choctaw Reservation and her orphaned grandmother was born to immigrant parents from Denmark and Sweden. Migration, immigration and resettlement are key themes that resonate through her creative practice and professional work. Her mother, Lee Plato Smith, educated at California School of Fine Arts, was a member of SFWA and taught her to draw off the edge and never be afraid of making mistakes. leslieplatosmith.com