JEFF LEAKE Jeff Leake (Ucross, 2014) is working in the tradition of fabulists such as Aesop and Jean de La Fontaine, using animal imagery and landscape to explore human relationships. Fascinated with the origin and nature of inner landscapes, he currently works with neuroscience faculty at Washington State University, Vancouver and Portland State University, teaching art and neuroscience there and around the Portland area. His work has been exhibited nationally and internationally, including at Gallery 114 and Weiden & Kennedy in Portland, OR; Bherd Gallery, Seattle, WA; Pterodactyl, Philadelphia, PA; Beijing Natural Culture Center, Beijing, China; and Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, England. Leake is a Bay Area native who has an MFA from UC Davis and a BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute. “Through exploring the places around Ucross, drawing, and taking photos, I was able to take bits and pieces of the landscape to create environments in my work that exist between the real and imagined. One of the most powerful things in a residency is the relationship you discover with other residents. Spending eight or more hours at a time working in the studio helped break down a lot of the blocks I had been experiencing in my work. My relationship to the environments in my paintings has changed — I am finding that the work I am creating now is more closely related to environmental issues.” Above: Look Back, 2014, Oil and acrylic on wood, 24” x 24” (framed) Right: Cabbages and Kings, 2015, Oil and acrylic on wood, 48” x 48” (framed)