Art with a deeper meaning

A successful artist for more than thirty years, Gemma Leys sells to collectors all over Europe. Many of her clients have been faithful patrons for years, often commissioning custom pieces. Wanting to extend this personal connection more deeply into her work, Gemma conceived The Art of Remembrance/The RE-Collection. Each piece is a unique commission that incorporates a memory, story or even personal item into the finished artwork.

Project A

We begin, as always, with a blank canvas. As I listen deeply to the client tell his story, ideas and possibilities emerge. Together we decide on a plan, a starting point.

Creation begins with artisan techniques of egg tempera and natural pigments.

Elements are included which capture the story and theme that was discovered with the client.

Finally the work is finished, approved by the client and installed.

Project B

The client wanted an artwork that would honour her 96 year old father. She came to me with an embroidery of his and we started from there.

I began with the soft blue and intensified it, while balancing it with softer, lighter colours. With the paint I created an aged structure, honouring the antiquity of both the man and the cloth.

A golden circle is added, reflecting the connection the father and the mother, and reflecting the circle of life. Finally, a beloved poem of Pablo Neruda is incorporated in the painting.

The painting is presented to the father, who bequeaths it to his son.