• Laurel Contributor

Leslie Jeffrey, Abstractionist

By Zach Claxton

Abstractionist Leslie Jeffery delves into the mystery and magic at the core of her work during a meeting of the Highlands-Cashiers Art League, Monday, August 26, at The Bascom.

From a young age, Leslie Jeffery was exposed to art. At five or six years old, she would accompany her grandmother, who founded the Tampa Art Institute, on plein air painting excursions, and quickly developed a love of art. Ms. Jeffery will be the Art League’s guest speaker at its August 26 meeting at The Bascom.

Leslie went on to study Art History and Constructive Design at Florida State University, receiving her degree in Art Education. Early in her painting career, she found inspiration in local subjects near her home in Largo, Florida, turning out representational works of sailboats, trawlers, bears and other landscape opportunities.

While she has worked with charcoal and pastels, today she paints primarily with acrylics. Over time, her style became looser, gradually evolving to abstracts, and today she considers herself to be an abstractionist, influenced by the abstract expressionists, such as Joan Mitchell, who frequented the New York art scene of the 1940s.

Leslie and her husband split their time between homes in Largo and Highlands, and she maintains studios in both locations. A Signature Member of the International Society of Acrylic Painters, she also holds membership in The Professional Association of Visual Artists, The Exhibiting Society of Visual Artists and the Florida Artists Group. Leslie is a Past President of Las Damas de Arte, a group of women artists, based in Tampa, Florida, that raises money for art scholarships. She is also a former co-owner of the Carolina Gallery of Fine Arts. She is currently represented in the Galleria Misto in Bellaire, Florida. She has exhibited in various venues in and around the Tampa and Highlands areas. Beginning in June, the 4118 Restaurant and Bar hosted a solo show of a large series of her work done in pastel and acrylic on 18” x 24” heavy watercolor paper.

Plan to meet Leslie at the August meeting, starting with a 4:30 P.M. wine reception, followed by her presentation at 5:00, which will include a painting demonstration.

For more information about the Art League, visit artleagueofhighlands-cashiers.com.

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