Dreaming in Color: Innovative, feminine art by Ledania


Unexpectedly bright and feminine, Colombian graffiti artist Ledania surprises with a bedroom installation at the Museum of Graffiti in Wynwood.

This solo exhibition on view through November 21, shows her nesting instincts in this immersive site-specific installation and works on canvas that speaks to her journey from a young female, LGBT artist tagging the rough streets of Colombia to her current position as a globally recognized muralist who has created collaborations with Disney.

One of the most prominent artists of the Latin American graffiti scene, Bogota-based Diana Ordonez is known as Ledania. This is a pseudonym she derived from the Greek mythology character Leda who was seduced by Zeus, in combination with her name Diana, the Huntress in Greek mythology.

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With vivid palettes, she celebrates color and nature in scenes populated by imaginary creatures who resemble owls or sprites. Her improvised world is magic and mystical, linked to expressionism, cubism, and surrealism.

“I love to travel and explore the world so that I can create graffiti with feeling,” says Ledania.

Her characters have no race or gender, there is no political or religious syntax in her work.

“I create places that are pure happiness by changing a structure in the city, intervening in it, adding my perspective, and changing how people who walk by there every day react to the space.”

In the Wynwood show called Private Spaces, she conjures up a cozy bedroom, painting furniture, and walls, and even making stained glass – a medium you rarely see in the graffiti world. A living moss wall and succulents grow at the foot of the bed, as nature is an integral part of the room.

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“I am thrilled with the exhibition,” Ledania says “as it perfectly represents the juxtaposition of private versus public spaces, which is always on my mind as a public painter in the streets who mainly leaves her work outside. The tropical colors and native plants serve as a nod to my country and its inhabitants, who are my inspiration every day.”

She even prints her art on the bed’s comforter and pillows, backed by lush midnight blue velvet. There are layers of paintings on the bed headboard, the wall behind the bed, and then a large painting hanging overhead. An armoire contains the photos she took of departed friends.

Installation by Ledania, photo Sandra Schulman

A vintage music radio player emits the sounds of birds and the metallic rattling of spray cans – the sounds she hears as she paints outdoors. A patterned rug adds yet another layer.

The themes are nature with intertwined trees, shapes that invoke feathers, and woodland creatures.

It’s a room to get lost in, and dream in color, one that intertwines the female urge to nest with her wild hair of creativity.

Her roots loom large in her art.

“For me, Colombia is happiness itself in many aspects. Take Carnival, for example, and the celebration it represents. And also our ancestors and how they explored decorative traditions in their craftsmanship, which also began incorporating European influences following colonization. I too am the product of that melting pot.”

Detail of painted bedroom, photo Sandra Schulman

Classically trained, Ledania earned a master’s degree in Visual and Plastic Arts at Pontificia Universidad Javeriana. She is a multimedia artist who expresses her creativity through street art, photography, graphic design, advertising, and artistic makeup. She also expresses her creativity in the implementation of her themes and motifs into clothing and accessories.

Ledania’s murals are displayed worldwide across 22 countries, from Colombia to the United States, Spain to Japan. Her art has been featured in several international exhibitions.

More on the artist at www.instagram.com/ledania

On exhibit through November 21st at The Museum of Graffiti, 276 NW 26th Street, Miami, FL 33127. Online: Instagram @museumofgraffiti

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