Artist Profile: Leila Labelle

Artist Leila Labelle presents her portfolio of mixed media artworks, inspired by cultures around the world. We spoke with her about that inspiration, and her work beyond the studio.

 

"The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 2/B" mixed media on canvas, 12" x 12" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 2/B” mixed media on canvas, 12″ x 12″

 

ABI:  How did you become intrigued with kimonos and portraying them in your art?

LL:  As a child, I dreamed of faraway lands. I was fascinated by China’s culture, calligraphy, textiles and garments. As I grew older, I discovered Japan’s iconic kimono, the mystic world of a Geisha, and became fascinated by the beauty and colors of India and Africa.

 

"The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 3/B" mixed media on canvas, 48" x 36" by Leila Labelle. See her arist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 3/B” mixed media on canvas, 48″ x 36″

 

I evolved as an artist, through series, and my first collection “Around the World” started in the Arctic and journeyed through Africa, India and the Orient. I studied fashion design and always had a passion for antique textiles & garments. Researching “The Silk Road”, it inspired me to create a new collection, “The Silk Road” honoring textiles and traditional garments from around the world. My first series is about Japan’s traditional garment:  the kimono in all its glory and all it embodied of beauty and sacrifice. Recently my series of traditional kimonos got inspired by Asian street art & graffiti.

 

"The Silk Road; Manga Girl Saga Chapter 2/A" mixed media on canvas, 48" x 36" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Manga Girl Saga Chapter 2/A” mixed media on canvas, 48″ x 36″

 

My art is not meant solely to be viewed, but to be discovered like a book, to be traveled through and to be felt. The depth of my dreams, travels and many creative experiences can be felt in my art. It is a culmination of numerous techniques, and includes symbolic fabric, handmade paper, and collage materials that I find in the most random of places as I travel to create my story.

 

"The Silk Road; Manga Girl Saga Chapter 1/A" mixed media on wood panel, 18" x 18" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Manga Girl Saga Chapter 1/A” mixed media on wood panel, 18″ x 18″

 

ABI:  Tell us about the charitable organizations you support through your work as an artist.

LL:  It all started in 2011 after travelling to Burkina Faso, Africa, and reading the book and documentary “Half the Sky.” Certain events trigger something in me, the need to get engaged, to give back. So I organized two fundraisers and collaborated with different organizations for empowering women and girls around the world for better human rights and education.

 

"The Silk Road; Manga Girl Chapter 2/B" mixed media on canvas 40" x 60" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Manga Girl Chapter 2/B” mixed media on canvas 40″ x 60″

 

In 2016, I was approach and honored to collaborate with the Project Soar foundation, who works to empower Moroccan girls for better education.  A percentage of my sales are given to the Project Soar Foundation.

 

"The Silk Road; Mange Girl Saga Chapter 2/C" mixed media on canvas 60" x 40" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Mange Girl Saga Chapter 2/C” mixed media on canvas 60″ x 40″

 

ABI:  What emotional connection does your work make with collectors, and what type of response have you received?

LL:  People are fascinated and very curious about my inspiration, process and techniques to create my sculptural paintings with the texture on the canvas is meant as a homage to old frescos and aged wallpaper. The collectors love to incorporate a touch of the Orient in there decor, they find my traditional kimono unique and elegant.

 

"The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 3/A" mixed media on canvas, 48" x 48" by Leila Labelle. See her artist profile at www.ArtsBusinessInstitute.org

“The Silk Road; Geisha Saga Chapter 3/A” mixed media on canvas, 48″ x 48″

 

My new series Geisha Saga and Manga Girl Saga, are very popular with the colorful motifs, large Asian symbols street art inspired and the representation of old Geisha from the Edo period in Japan and the very popular anime Manga Girl.

 

 

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