Further to its retail mission, Figure Eight also explores the intersection of art and sustainability through an on-site exhibition featuring the works of artist Leslie Sardinias.
Leslie Sardinias' exhibition "Perfect Blue” which is currently on-display in the back gallery of the space, inspires contemplation on themes of fragility within the marine universe of the Caribbean.
We sat down with Leslie to hear more about his beginnings as an artist, his creative process, and the intersection of art, sustainability and fashion as seen in the Figure Eight space.
Take us back to the beginning - tell us about how you became an artist?
I was born an artist. My first memory is of me holding color pens and drawing in my grandma's home in the countryside in Cuba. I studied art in Habana at the “ Escuela Nacional de Arte “ and subsequently started my artist career with a solo exhibition show at “ Habana Gallery “ in 1998.
Where do you seek inspiration?
My inspiration often comes from a feeling of good energy with a simple flower and the city I am in. I like the combination between natural and human elements. In my art, I explore how humans continue to engage, interact, and discover the wonderful world around us and the role of plants and flora within it.
What is the connection between sustainability and your art?
The connection is very simple and straightforward: I like to bring attention to how human interaction affects the natural habitats and ecosystems around them.
In the show at Figure Eight, for example, I wanted to bring attention to the human impact on the water of the Caribbean.
What is the meaning of ‘Perfect Blue’ that is currently on-display?
In ‘Perfect Blue,’ I speak about the floral woods below the Caribbean coast and the fragility of this universe. The artworks are painted on paper because the paper is very fragile which alludes to the fragility of the Caribbean ocean ecosystem.
What are your thoughts on the intersection of art and design, as seen in the Figure Eight space?
We live in a world where the lines between art and design are starting to blur. Both can be seen as crafts within one creative space. For this reason, I think a space like Figure Eight is a contemporary fusion that showcases how both practices can dialogue and become one.
What is next for Leslie Sardinias?
I have a solo show coming up in Spain. And I am also designing a book about Cuban and Brazilian music of the 1950's. We are also exploring a show in Shanghai with 4 Art Partners, which I am very excited about. One of my dreams is to be able to showcase my drawing skills specifically, in NYC.