Artist Statement

At the age of three, barely able to hold a pencil, I started drawing… I never stopped.

I have been expressing myself through art my entire life. When I was just five years old, my family left Cuba, commencing a lifetime of migration and hyphenation. This feeling of impermanence and non-identity, at home everywhere but not fully belonging anywhere became my way of life. This dichotomy of melancholy and ease, radical yet classical, underlies all my creations. All my work carries a message- social justice, spirituality, intellect; my innate and passionate need to express inarticulate feelings.

I carry a notebook with me everywhere I go since creation can happen anywhere. Sometimes these ideas stay on the notebook for years before they become reality but they almost always do.

I start preparing mentally to work much before I actually begin. I commence with a  clear idea of the message and the overall look of the piece. Throughout the night, my mind begins the work and often new ideas form in my sleep, expanding on the original thought. I start working very early in the morning, with my mind in peace and fresh, dressed entirely in black. As a priest prepares for mass, I prepare to work. I start the music, which is classical adagios and always the same, and within minutes I no longer exist in this world, I do not hear anything and I don’t stop until either the work or my physical being demands it. I work completely alone, in the silence of my mind.

I am an artist because I breathe. I pour myself entirely on the work until there is nothing left of me, yet when I “return”, I am reborn. I hope to my last day to have paint on my face and hands, to be able to smell the peculiar smell of the oils and my eyes to see color that surrounds me, inside and out.

The impetus of my work is my need to communicate and share a common human experience. I talk, feel and hopefully touch, through art. My work is my word and my truth.
Leonor Anthony
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