LEIGH ANITA





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New England based artist explores solitude and darkness picturing female body in an alternative way.








How did you realize drawing was the way to express your creativity?


I began drawing and painting when I was very young. Without thinking of it, I’ve always felt a gravity to make order by drawing lines and repeating patterns. When I do my work in pen, my focus is the relationship between line and stipple to create organization in noise.








In my early twenties there was a time when I could not bring myself to create anything substantial. I went a full year without completing a drawing. After spending so much time trying to find words to express myself, I discovered that both visual arts and writing are essential to my self expression and sanity.









Explain your technique and your favorite subject


Figurative art is what most interests me. For as long as I can remember, I have felt a sublime tension in portraying the human form. At once, we manage to master our environment while also remaining at the mercy of our emotions. The figures that I draw encompass this. They have strength and passion, but also darkness and solitude.



 




What is the "life thing" that most teases your mind?


I use my work as an outlet to explore elements of the divine. It was early in my childhood that I recognized that atheism made the most sense to me. Religion fascinates me even as a nonbeliever. I do not feel that life is a void without faith. The idea that some people believe that lack of faith is emptiness inspires me to create art that plays with elements of the divine. The human experience can hold a great deal of emptiness, but this can feed passion. It is this lack of belief that drives me to explore deeper. Following and coordinating opportunities for myself inspires me. I am also a writer, a researcher, and a teacher.







You propose an alternative vision of reality and woman. Is this somewhat embodying your own person?


As an artist, I do not believe that it is possible to completely separate the work that I create from my reality. As a woman, I feel that this is also true. When I start a piece, my intent is to develop a narrative. I draw my inspiration from my experiences and connections with history and legend. I do not believe in a higher power or in a structured understanding of magic, but I do believe that darkness presents the possibility to become something greater.








Many of my pieces deal in a paradigm between vulnerability and agency that transcends gender. I use themes of the occult to symbolize this power. I have always felt an overwhelming pressure to be reserved, to be delicate and soft spoken. My figurative pieces of women embracing the devil are representative of passion and freedom.







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Mark