At the moment, as an artist, I am working mostly with clay, though I enjoy almost any medium as the mood takes me. Sometimes I concentrate wholly on my ceramic pieces; the next month I may only work on one of my art boxes; the following week I might get the urge to make art jewellery or to design a T-shirt or handbag ... every day has to be a creative day.
In the 1970s I was your typical Rock Chick making a living by designing and making exuberant clothing for various Rock stars and their families. In the following decades I had my own children's designer clothing business, then I was an agent for artists and illustrators and later worked in the book publishing world. Since 2004 I have concentrated on creating my own art, whether it's a small individual piece or a large public art installation.
Some of my art projects
Installed in July 2012 – The Estuary in the foyer of The Sheldrake Restaurant on The Dee Estuary in Lower Heswall on The Wirral. This is an 18 foot long ceramic and glass wall art piece, topped with a poem about the estuary, pressed into the clay. The theme was the estuary and its wild beauty – the restaurant being a jewel in a perfect setting. This was another successful collaboration between Leandra Holder and Chris Turrel-Watts.
In summer 2011 – Glass Butterfly Tree installation at New Ferry Butterfly Park on The Wirral, created by Leandra Holder and Chris Turrell-Watts. 50 larger than life dichroic glass butterflies, made by Leandra and Chris, were hung from a flowering hawthorn tree. The theme was rebirth and rejuvenation (of a former industrial site.)
Sept – Nov 2010 – “Art Merseywide – The Best of the Open Exhibitions” at the National Conservation Centre Liverpool. Leandra Holder showed one of her mixed media boxes titled “Dreaming of Friends Past.” The theme was brought about by Leandra thinking about friends from the past and how many of them had completely disappeared, despite Facebook and the internet. Constructed from wood, a clay modelled figure and many clay faces, plus cloth, paper, rubber and glass. As with all her boxes, it had electric lighting inside the box.
Summer 2009 ¯ “XXX” exhibition at The Fusion Art Museum in New York. Leandra Holder showed a mixed media box titled “He Called Her A Bitch When She Left Him To Go Travelling.” The theme was steam-punk time-travel, an idea that has always intrigued Leandra since reading The Time Machine by H. G. Wells. Constructed from old watch parts, a clay modelled figure, wood, glass and found objects. Electric lighting powered by batteries.
Summer 2008 – The Sefton Open at The Atkinson Gallery Southport. Leandra Holder was a cash prize winner and her mixed media box titled “Inside The Blue House”, was bought for the permanent collection of the gallery. Inspired by the life of Frida Kahlo, whose work Leandra admires. Constructed from wood, clay, fabrics and found objects. Electric lighting.
October 2006 – “Somewhere” An Exhibition of Ceramic Sculpture in Lewis's Department Store window. Leandra showed a small smoked carved porcelain skull – formed from female figures seemingly draped together to give the impression of a skull – based on an installation by Dali, where he used real women instead of clay.