Dr. Leon Nesis, M.D. a.k.a Loncho
Dr. Leon Nesis, known to his friends as “Loncho”, is a retired surgeon. He is former co-chief of general surgery at North Shore University Hospital in Plainview, NY and affiliated with NYU Medical School of Medicine. He is also a former Medical Director of Aetna Health Management Company.
As someone who as always enjoyed art, he began taking art education classes under the direction of Eleanor Terrarosa. He then became an active member of the Art League of Long Island. There he received instruction from his mentor, Connie Wain Schwartz, and other distinguished art teachers such as Stan Brodsky, Ward Hooper, Roberta Ehrlagen, Sal Tortora, and others. Loncho also took workshops with another mentor, Evelyn Boren, a well-known watercolorist who teaches in France (Provance), Italy (Tuscany), and Mexico (Sayulita). All of these artists guided him towards accomplishing his aspiration to paint. His pieces include lively landscapes, seascapes, flowers, vibrating colorful marketplaces. His watercolors are described as magical colors, soft and vibrant … attempting to crystallize a moment; memories of scenes describing peace, beauty, and happiness.
In the Berkshires, Dr. Nesis and his wife reside in Richmond where he takes inspiration from his gardens, the lake, and surrounding hills. Under the direction of painter Diane Cournoyer, his focus now is studying the creative process using oils.
“I am writing spontaneously about my brief art life when I started playing with color and as a person who admires vibrant colors and expressions in art.
Since I came to the USA, and during the next 40 years as a surgeon, Co-Chief of the Department of Surgery at the North Shore University Hospital, New York University Center, I was enjoying and admiring art as much as the science of surgery. At that time, the scalpel was my way of helping people with their healing process.
After forty years of practicing surgery which was one of the passions in my life, my media changed from scalpel to paintbrushes; irradiating colorful scenes of nature that gave me a new and different perspective in my life.
I always liked to go to museums and art exhibits; it brought me feelings of humanity, beauty, things that made me see pictures of human expressions living in their world, but always connected with its life and nature. Painting at the beginning was very difficult for me; as a surgeon you have to be precise. You don’t have any margin for errors. My mentors and teachers at the art leagues advised me to release myself of the perfection as a surgeon, which would then take me to appreciate the meaning of freedom.
FREE, to open my life and feelings to the beauty of fresh air and brightness of colors and views of peoples lives.
My art mentor Evelyne Boren tried to guide me to enjoy mixtures of colors in scenes of landscaping, seascapes, florals, the topography of free air with vibrant colors of large open farms with cows, horses, and other great wonders of nature.
Mixing colors with my inseparable tool “The Color Wheel” showed me that mixing wet and wet, thin or thick, dry or thin, warm and cold colors, was my way to appreciate and evaluate my enjoyment and improvement.
I don’t draw a lot; I get my ideas of composition and color combinations. The rest, creating events of beautiful colors to enjoy, follows. My paintings are usually from photos that I took to create my composition, at times en pleine air. It is a natural and wonderful way to remind me of especial places or groups of people and families.
For me, mixed media was a great way to apply different media, with the unknown final result after seven layers of different colors and mediums. It is an exciting moment to see the final piece of art that usually ends up being a combination of natural element combined in an artistic way to see how different colors and mediums can give us such a beautiful ending. Just as sunny days evoke happiness, a gloomy day makes you feel down, and a splash of color on a cloudy day makes all the difference, I hope to obtain those vibrant colorful feelings with my paintings.”