Leela Bora was born in Almora, India in the northern province of Uttar Pradesh, which is located at the base of the Himalayas. Primarily self taught as a youth, she was inspired by the books of 19th Century paintings given to her by neighbors and also by her first teacher, Priya Singhania, who taught at the local school.
After moving to New York she continued her artistic training at SUNY Purchase. Her work has encompassed multiple mediums including drawing, acrylic painting, sculpture, oil painting, photography and her greatest passion, water color painting. Drawing upon Eastern philosophy and spirituality as a conceptual basis, Leela aims to establish an exchange between viewers and the universe around them, utilizing a site-specific approach to culture and nature.
With a strong sense of community and joy of collaborating with fellow artists, she established the Upper View Gallery located in downtown Peekskill from 1996-2007 and curated shows for over a decade. She has been a prominent force in various artist associations including the Valley Artist Association, women in Arts Washington DC, the Westchester Center for the Arts and the Northern Westchester Watercolor Society.
Her works have been displayed across New York including the Katonah Museum of Art, The Shrub Oak Library (solo exhibition), the Paramount Theatre, the Framing Gallery, the Flat Iron Gallery, the Somers Library, the Sleepy Hollow Gallery (solo exhibition), the Pound Ridge Gallery, the Belle Levine Art Exhibition, the Mt. Pleasant Library, the Hudson Valley Hospital, the Muscoot Farm Gallery, the Bedford Hills Community House Art Show and the Hendrick Hudson Library (solo exhibition).
Leela was awarded first prize in the Valley Artist Competition for her watercolor painting by a jury in 1997 entitled "Roses". Says Leela, "My paintings are from imagination and memory. Inspirations from nature, subtle colors, gentle movements and charming scenes are interwoven to create serenity and beauty. It is from this inspiration, a simple walk by the river, mountains and trees that lifts me and connects me to God". Leela Bora currently resides in New York's Hudson Valley.
Studied at Suny Purchase for 3 years. Self-owned studio in Peekskill for over a decade. I am mostly self-taught and have been painting for 30 years.