Cape Town artist Leila Garde’s current exhibition at 31 Harbour RD, “Cat Amongst the Pigeons”, could not be more aptly named! After all, have you met her? Both her creative presence and work demands serious attention!
Her Exhibition Title is both symbolic of her work, but is also how she pervades herself as an artist, where she disturbs the “norm” of what is to be “expected” of a trained or academic artist.
Leila writes: “When you give up on what people think and you do what you want to do, you attain a new, awesome kind of freedom”.
Having worked in “design & merchandising” on an international level, this now “full-time” Hout Bay artist has a keen eye, and an eclectic use of colour, mixing unusual hues and shades together that work brilliantly in today’s modern interiors.
Leila’s fundamental belief is that today’s art is owing much to the experimental spirit of the artist, much like the Impressionists of yesteryear who advocated radical theories, breaking almost all major rules, concerning composition and subject matter. Versatile, she has a wide range, continuously experimenting and evolving, and as a result, has no fixed boundaries. Her work is a confident pictorial vocabulary of colour, life and humour.
Thoughtful, and through composition, you can feel and see her considered meditation, an automatic method that brings visual order to her work, which is both spontaneous yet deliberate at the same time. By her signature use of intellectual wit, extraordinary colour and luminosity, there are subtle ambiguities to her work, where polarities co-exist in harmony – much like her personality.
With a “Buddhist” upbringing, she has a strong philosophical outlook and remains creatively confident and defiant, ultimately, inspired by Life!