Wednesday, February 22, 2012

My featured artist for my March Open Studio: Lessie Venardo Dixon

I'm not sure if I would have chosen to get a studio at the Fine Arts Building without the insight I got from Lessie Venardo Dixon.  In the summer of 2010, he had a studio on the seventh floor, which I visited during an open studio event.  I was trying to decide between the Fine Arts Building and The Lacuna.  Getting the opportunity to speak with Lessie and a few other artists there about their experiences helped me to make my decision.  Oddly enough, several months passed before I ever saw Lessie in the building again, and he just kind of shook his head and laughed at me, and jokingly accused me of trying to avoid him, when really that isn't what happened at all.  He has since decamped for a new space of his own which I hope will have a great big grand opening soon so I can blog about it on here.  In the meantime, you can see his art in March at my studio.

Here's what Lessie says about his work:

I create oil painted portraits that are more than merely a replica of a photograph. I craft portraits that are works of art, heirlooms, and personal treasures. Portraits bookmark memories, celebrate achievements and commemorates lives, and my goal is to capture the essence of these special moments and convey their personal sentiments.
Artistry is about the freedom of creative self-expression. Creative self-expression translated to canvas allows me to capture a moment in time, to free myself with broad brushstrokes and to paint with emotion. Being an artist first, I paint in different genres still life, abstract, and portrait painting. When I paint, every piece has a unique voice. The portrait should capture the essence or the subject, allowing the painting to speak truth in volume. In a musical painting it reflects movement, energy, and sound. Abstract paintings will convey a mood and encourage the viewer to ask a question. The world of art is always evolving; however, true art will be preserved for years to come.

A man of phenomenal artistic talents, Lessie has won numerous awards and has exhibited his work in a number of prestigious shows, including the Black Creativity Show at the Museum of Science and Industry, where he won the Best of Painting Award.

Here are some photos of his work:

I hope you can make it to my studio so you can see his work in person and meet him.  Here are all the details:

Open Studio featuring Guest Artist Lessie Dixon
Friday, March 9th, 2012
6 p.m. - 9 p.m.
The Fine Arts Building
Studio 632F
410 S. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL

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