top of page
Khamails (3).jpg

JaamZIN Creative

Exhibition

Lea Laboy

Artist

Painter Lea Laboy.jpg

Lea Laboy is an academic oil painter whose works balance between impressionism and minimalism with references to conceptualism. Art theorist, researcher of the development of painting techniques. Still life is the most famous thematic group in the painter's work.

Contact with artist:

https://www.lealaboy.com

Interview

Your time spent living in Asia, and exploring Arabic art and architecture seems to have had a profound impact on your work. Can you share more about how these experiences have shaped your artistic vision and the themes you explore in your creations?

I believe that this time has primarily "polished" me as a person. What changes the artist internally has to be reflected in his actions as a creator. Jackson Pollock once said that "Every good painter paint what he is" and this is justified. In my paintings there is a particle that tells me which direction my soul resonates and which direction my thoughts drift. However, I do not try to change everything definitively - it is a positive value that enriches me as an individual and a creator. In my paintings, I do not want to present the recipients with an "imitation" or "substitute", but only with the "glow" given to them. That is why I decided to present them in a literary way. because I want to draw attention to the fact that when visiting mosques, we experience not only extraordinary architecture, art or artistic craftsmanship, but also enter the space dedicated to God and belonging to Him, and this is what makes each of these places so unique.

Meeting the Tatar community and discovering the art of Khmails appears to be a pivotal moment in your journey. Could you elaborate on this encounter and how it influenced your decision to create your own Khmails?

I have met the Tatar community before, and I respect and appreciate it very much. During one of the conversations, Khamail, which is a religious Muslim manuscript, was mentioned. I could also see it in person. This subject intrigued me very much because I am currently exploring the topic of manuscripts and old prints. Unfortunately, the owner received it as a souvenir from his family and couldn't get it provide me with technical information on it. So, I started my search in libraries and antiquarian bookshops, it turned out that this is an extremely niche topic and the information is sparsely available. This was probably due to the fact that the manuscripts, although they appeared as a cultural phenomenon in the 16th century in the territories of the no longer existing Duchy of 

Lithuania attracted attention specialists only in the 19th century. From the materials I found, the manuscripts were usually characterized by a small format and the number of their pages fluctuated between 100 and 300. Also, until the end of the 20th century, they were written by hand with saffron ink. It is interesting that although they served as everyday prayer books, in addition to notes of prayers or rituals, they could contain other texts, including non-religious ones. So, based on this fragmentary information, I am trying to create my own Khamail, which I will also give to someone someday.

Creating miniature books adorned with 24-carat gold is a fascinating blend of traditional craftsmanship and luxury. What inspired you to embark on creating these miniature treasures, and what challenges have you faced in this intricate process?

I am a book enthusiast and completely addicted to reading. I learned to read at the age of 5, at the age of 10 I read Orwell for the first time at school, I was an award-winning laureate reading the most books per year. Some books constantly come into my hands and become a new inspiration, so I can certainly repeat the words of John Steinbeck, the Nobel Prize winner in field of literature, "I guess there are never enough books". 

Unfortunately, the truth is that people read less and less or do not read at all. People are thoughtlessly trying to displace the traditional book by promoting cheap electronic books, which is a total misunderstanding. 

The devaluation of everything that surrounds us has only led to situations in which someone pays someone else to write a book for them or artificial intelligence does it. An echo of this is a situation I know of in which a person said "the author paid someone to write the book for him and I paid someone to read it for me." There used to be an index of forbidden books and they aroused human curiosity and desire. Today everything is for everyone and if something is for everyone, it is actually for nobody. Valuable things are always niche because they require knowledge to get to know them. Those who are unfamiliar with knowledge are like a princess from Andersen's fairy tale The "Swineherd" who admired the tin pot and did not recognize the beauty of the rose. The position of the book was destroyed. Personally, I refused to complete my project on mosques in such a way and also with the participation of artificial intelligence. From the definition of a book, we know that it is a written document with a specific number of pages and a permanent nature, which conveys an idea of human intelligence, not artificial. My goal in creating miniature books is to maintain this rule, on a scale that may be intriguing enough for the recipient to decide to read the book. The smallest book I made is 1 cm high and 0.7 cm wide. I have recently been learning to gild, which is the result of my total infatuation with Persian manuscripts. When it comes to challenges, it is definitely the size. As a painter I do not accept small formats, I need a surface to build the form, here the surface is drastically limited, which completely changes the work requirements.

You mention drawing inspiration from mosques on the UNESCO world list for some of your work. How do you translate the unique architectural solutions and decorative motifs found in these sacred spaces into the medium of your art?

In my book, I described and documented many mosques that I had visited. Each mosque has its own history and differs in architectural style. However, they all have in common the fact that they were built in places where former temples had previously stood. When visiting each mosque, you are aware that you are in a place of religious worship, but also that you are breathing the atmosphere of past centuries, you are absorbing the timeless beauty of the walls that have witnessed history and it is completely experiential. To sum up, I think that all these elements were inspiring for me, but I think that, taking into account the sacrum zone, it seems to me that the only appropriate form that does not exceed its boundaries is literary presentation.

Incorporating calligraphy motifs inspired by everyday objects into your paintings is a unique approach. How do you select these objects, and what role does calligraphy play in conveying the essence of your subject matter?

I usually create a painting on many levels. There is a technical zone, a theme and a reference to something like the "hidden agenda" as in the case of the oil painting "artificial light". Many people will look at this painting and see only still life, but there will be people who will ask themselves: why is this image so overexposed? Why did the painter use yellow light, which distorted the beauty of each color and showed something so unattractive to people? If one asks oneself this question, one will look at the title, in which there is the word light, but with the emphasis that it is artificial. Why this procedure? Perhaps to show how almost everything in this world has lost its true nature and we who look at it no longer have true judgment in our eyes. We look at a well-constructed painting presenting still life without being aware of the drama of the object/person unfolding before our eyes. In this context, suddenly images with elements of calligraphy appear and again, a keen observer will notice that all the colors are saturated, bright, emanating with natural light, why? I'm leaving this one without answer to every person who not only contemplates art but also life.

Catalogue

Online Exhibition

12.49h -13.15h.jpg

12:49 h – 13:15h , oil , 2019

Lebanon, oil.jpg

Lebanon, oil, 2024

Little Boy - Hiroshima 1945, oil.jpg

Little Boy – Hiroshima 1945, oil 2018

Lolita,oil.jpg

Lolita, oil , 2018

Persia,oil.jpg

Persia, oil, 2022

Persis lemon saffron drink and date cake, oil.jpg

Persis lemon saffron drink and date cake, oil 2024

Sweet moments ,oil.jpg

Sweet moments, oil , 2022

The Conference of the Birds, Attar of Nishapur.jpg

The Conference of the Birds Attar of Nishapur, miniature book

The Conference of the Birds, Attar of Nishaour.jpg

The Conference of the Birds Attar of Nishapur, miniature book

Miniature Quran.jpg

Miniature Quran

Miniature Quran (2).jpg

Miniature Quran

Miniature Quran (3).jpg

Miniature Quran

Miniature Book.jpg

Miniature Book

Miniature book (3).jpg

Miniature Book

Miniature book (4).jpg

Miniature Book

Khamails.jpg

Manuscript – Khamails

Khamails (2).jpg

Manuscript – Khamails

Khamails (3).jpg

Manuscript – Khamails

Holidays, oil.jpg

Holidays, oil, 2022

Frida Kahlo, miniature book.jpg

Frida Kahlo, miniature book

Frida Kahlo miniature book.jpg

Frida Kahlo, miniature book

1984 , George Orwell, artist's book.jpg

1984, George Orwell, artist;s book

1984 George Orwell , artist's book.jpg

1984, George Orwell artist's book

1984, George Orwell, artist's book.jpg

1984, George Orwell artist's book

L.Laboy.jpg

12:49h- 15:15h, oil 2019

bottom of page