Lea Rigdon, local to Augusta, GA, is a self-taught artist working predominately with watercolors. Some of her first memories are of her own mother creating art. Lea began creating at a young age. At the time, often being inspired by the illustrations and colorful landscapes in Disney films she and her family would enjoy together. In turn, Lea has passed this legacy of artistic passion down to her own children. Her works act as a personal reminder of who she is, where she came from and the people she loves the most.
She often sees her art as an enchanted retreat. Utilizing the process of creation as a form of meditation and self discovery. Being a mom for 32 years and an Administrative Assistant for the Augusta Fire Department for 25 years, Lea reports she tends to be an overthinker and sometimes gets in her own way creatively. The most rewarding thing about creating, she feels, is when one is able to get past oneself and the act of creating turns into a wonderfully freeing moment. She enters into world of her own creation and time stops. The best part for her is the ability to share this part of herself with others. Through her works she hopes to create a magical space for the viewer to pause, breathe and smile.
Viewing her works, it is easy to see that they are inspired by nature, both flora and fauna, and the magical wonder that lies there-in. Her most recent body of work, Midnight Marigolds, which is on display now at the Augusta & Co. Gallery, features many colorful illustrations of roosters, hens, chicks, deer, foxes and owls along with various floral arrangements and blooms. The style can be described as a modernized folk art that utilizes repeated patterns to imply a difference in textures, in a way similar to Kay Nielsen or Eyvind Earle, who were renowned artists that are known for their work with early Disney films. These were the same films that Lea herself enjoyed as a child.
The utilization of complimentary oranges and blues adds a sense of balance alongside the whimsical flow of watercolor, which gives a feel for shifts in light or for subtle movements caused by a gentle breeze. Lea also incorporates paints with an element of shimmer that give a dream-like glow as light touches the work.
Lea Rigdon’s artworks can be seen across the Augusta River Region in spaces such as the Gertrude Herbert Institute of Art and 4P Studios and in exhibitions such as The Greater Augusta Arts Council’s Wet Paint Party and The Annual October Spooktacular.
For More information on Lea Rigdon and her works, please visit www.augustaarts.com/galleries or her Instagram at www.instagram.com/midnight_marigolds_studio/ or Facebook at www.facebook.com/artworkbylearigdon .
Lea has been an artist member of the Greater Augusta Arts Council since 2018. Since her children have grown up and are now creating their own stories and she is now edging nearer to retirement, Lea believes she is entering into a second phase of life and her art has become a journey of self-discovery and personal growth. Back in 2018, when Rigdon began perusing art seriously, she was unsure where to start and decided on joining the Arts Council. She considers it “THE best thing” she has done. Meeting so many wonderful people and growing her arts network, she has found local artists and arts supporters who have guided and offered so many great opportunities to share work with others.
Her current body of work, Midnight Marigolds will be on display at Augusta & Co. Gallery until July 5th, 2022. An opening reception will be held on Saturday, June4th from 3:00 PM – 5:00 PM.