April: Jeff Leake

 A California bay area native Jeff Leake holds a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and an MFA from UC Davis. Based in the rich history of painting, literature, and natural science, Leake sifts through this various source material finding stories through the process of constructing a world for himself rather than as a preconceived idea. Through this he examines how our traditions, histories, and cultural morals are translated through simple stories such as parables and fables.
Leake states “It’s always surprising to me how these very complex cultural ideals can be conveyed in such an abstract but easily understood manner. I am interested in Animal stories in particular because they are ubiquitous throughout culture and history and seem to allow us to step outside of ourselves.”
In this work he explores these shifts in perspective that come from the point of view of the natural world where our human presence is a distant but pervasive element. Like the anthropomorphic animals in Aesop’s fables, Leake’s work tells the story of these relationships by allegory. However rather than a specific narrative it is the juxtaposition of imagery that examines these connections between our condition and nature, as a question rather than a statement.