Perrysburg Gallery hosts Chilean Artist, Veronica Leiton

Posted Apr 12th, 2010 by Paula Baldoni  Category: Arts & Entertainment, Toledo.com


In the face of escalating violence, the artist’s life and work remains firmly rooted in her adopted home of Ciudad Juarez on the U.S./Mexico border.

River House Arts in downtown Perrysburg is honored to present an exhibition of works by Veronica Leiton, a Chilean artist now living in Mexico. On Friday, April 30th, the artist will attend the opening reception from 6 to 8 p.m. The exhibit will be on view through June 4th, 2010.

“Everywhere people suffer. In places where there is extreme suffering and violence, whether it’s Juarez or Afghanistan, life also goes on. We continue. And we create.” – Veronica Leiton

Originally from Santiago, Chile, Veronica Leiton has spent the last 15 years in the border city of Juarez, in Chihuahua Mexico. Despite its rank as the murder capital of the world, more dangerous than Kabul or Baghdad, Leiton is fiercely committed to Ciudad Juarez. “It has been and will continue to be my home… there are many people working very seriously and nobly here, in solidarity and with social commitment.”

Finding inspiration and emotional strength in her community, Leiton shares a complex of emotions through her vibrant color palette and multilayered temporal landscapes. The natural world and man-made realities share her canvases without regard for the assumed limits of space and passage of time. Often invoking texts of Latin-America’s literary giants like Federico Garcia Lorca, Pablo Neruda, and José Martí, as well as many lesser-known poets of Mexico and Chihuahua, Leiton explores “feelings of love, indifference, loneliness, nostalgia — universal themes that I believe can be felt and seen anywhere on this planet.”

While many of her works have a meditative quality about them, they are never still. The action of Leiton’s painting is distinct, leaving a permanent imprint of movement – sometimes gentle, often swift. That her paintings contain an unusual degree of motion is not surprising given her educational background and early career in cinematography. The artist received her Bachelor’s Degree in Audio-Visual Communications from the Universidad de Arte y Ciencias Sociales in Santiago, and an advanced degree in Arts from the Escuela Nacional de Artesana. In the mid-1990’s she traveled to Juarez to run a workhop in film-making and to later accept a teaching position at the university there.

But painting has been Leiton’s first love since childhood and her works have been shown in New York, Miami, Santa Fe, and Chicago as well as in Greece, Cuba, Chile, and throughout Mexico. Her works are in private collections world-wide and in six museums, including Mexico’s National Institute of Art. Leiton has also won numerous awards and recognitions, in 2007 was named State Artist of Chihuahua.

In February, 2010, Leiton was honored with a solo exhibition at the Galeria de Universidad Autónoma Metropolitana in Mexico City, the result of a two-year project sponsored by governments of both the Chile and Mexico. The exhibit, Metáforas Cromáticas de la Mistral en México, was a series of paintings depicting the texts of Gabriela Mistral, the beloved Chilean-born poet and Nobel Prize winner who also spent much of her life in Mexico.

Several of paintings from this recent exhibit will be on display at River House Arts, along with new works created solely for the Perrysburg show.

River House Arts was founded in late 2009 to offer a local showcase for strong modern and contemporary works. The gallery is privileged to add Ms. Leiton to its rapidly growing roster of outstanding contemporary artists.

Gallery Hours are 10-6 p.m. Tuesday thru Thursday and 11-7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. www.river-house-arts.com

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Paula Baldoni - River House Arts | 115 W. Front Street | Perrysburg, OH 43551

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