Leila D’Amato has been creating art since she secretly got into her mother’s paints at the age of one and created a mural on her bedroom walls. The native clay on her family’s farm provided the next inspiration, and sculpture and pottery followed. Fascination with textiles and fibers led to clothing design. Her focus had shifted from art objects to arts of adornment; the natural evolution was art applied to the body.
In 2003, a visit to Dermagraphic tattoo in Oak Park, MI, left Leila hooked. In tattooing, she found the organicity of a living canvas breathed new life into her art. The technical and artistic challenges were exhilarating, and she quickly became adept at design and application.
She studied fine art at the International Academy of Design and Technology, and found her own dreamlike imagery tinged with the bizarre to be reflected in the works of Dali and Bosch, who became strong influences. Symbolism and mystique carry weight in her work, but Leila is multi-faceted, and the flowing curves, convolutions, and decorative graphic elements of Mucha also impact her style, particularly in tattooing.
Experience as a fashion and photographer’s model sparked Leila’s interest in makeup and photography in the early 2000’s. Total immersion in whatever she is doing is a constant for her, so it was natural to become involved in the makeup artistry of modeling, as well as getting behind the camera and applying her eye for composition. Leila procured an artist position with MAC Cosmetics where she has worked part time since 2007, and does freelance work as a photographer.
She has created art for clients spanning the country and was recently published on the cover of hip hop recording artist Danny Brown’s album, “Old”.
Leila is a creature of passions: for beauty, novelty, and powerful emotion, and her creative talent is the summation and embodiment of them.