15 Feb 14
- AUTHOR Magalie Yacinthe
- CATEGORY Blog
Invitational 2014 – Leo Rucker
Our next featured artist statement: Leo Rucker
Leo Rucker has dedicated his time and efforts over the past 25 years to developing and creating fine positive art in the Triad area. Working with many of the local arts program as well as Triad art organizations, to encourage and inspire young artists along with creative individuals to tap into one’s deeper self. Leo believes that it is his calling to share what God has given him as he passes through this life’s journey on to the next level of his career and the world by making a difference in the Winston Salem area and abroad.
A Winston-Salem, North Carolina artist, Leo Rucker began his art career at the early age of 5yrs old when he was commissioned by his next door neighbor to render a pencil drawing of her deceased WWI veteran husband. After receiving many awards in high school Leo continued his pursuit of art at Rutledge College in commercial art receiving his degree and outstanding awards. He went to Carolina Art & Frame Company becoming a supervisor in the gold leaf department for 10yrs. This employment connected him with artists Richard Hedgecock and Paul Roseboro. Hedgecock and Roseboro encouraged him to enter into his first competition at the Sawtooth Center of Visual Arts. This first step led to many of his portraiture and mural commissions including a series of drawing and paintings for Forsyth County Partnership (Smart Start) as well as Segmented Marketing Services Inc. (SMSi). For SMSi Leo has created over 155 pastel portraits of accomplished ethnic women from around the world for an ongoing column Role Models Beyond Beauty featured in Sophisticate’s Black Hair Magazine.
Currently working as an instructor for Young Rembrandts Inc. teaching elementary youth basic drawing skills. Leo has pushed his skills to another level by rendering a painting out of the Vatican – The School of Athens by artist Raphael, which has given him a truer look at how much he has developed as an artist. Leo was commissioned by Rankin Elementary in Greensboro NC to create a mural called – Pass It On with kids from 26 nationalities. Rucker was the 2010 Save The Arts Awards Painter of the year and his most recent project was for the Winston Salem Transit Authority – painting the history of the Safe Bus Company on pillars at the bus station.