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In 1982 after 2 1/2 years travelling in Africa, Australia and SE Asia, he opened a studio in Kilburn, London. During this time, he studied drawing and painting with the artist Michael Chaitow at Camden Arts Centre and started teaching stained glass for ILEA, in Wandsworth, London. Leo also worked occasionally for the London Repository of Stained Glass, restoring stained glass windows, including the library windows of the American School in London.

In 1990, Leo Amery moved to the countryside in SW France where he, now, lives and works with his wife Claudine. Leo works to commission, for exhibitions, runs stained glass courses and does a small amount of restoration work. Leo has a small gallery space open to the public during the summer, or by appointment the rest of the year.

Leo has his work in the permanent collection of the Glassmuseum, Ebeltoft, Denmark and the Musée du Vitrail de Cursay sur Vonne, France. His work has been awarded with the Prix Départemental Arsène Maigne (Lot), 2001 and the Prix Départemental SEMA 46, Lot, (Société d’Encouragement aux Métiers d’Art), 2003.

Leo Amery employs a novel system of exhibiting stained glass (called stained glass relief) where the work is displayed on a wall, front-lit, but displaced by several centimetres from the surface of the wall, thus allowing for the reflection of colour and form, on to the wall behind. This preserves the primordial concept of the passage of light, yet enables the work to be hung and moved around as easily as if it were a painting.

His work is currently on exhibit in Brive-La-Gaillarde at the Expo plurielle Garage et Chapelle St-Libéral. Additional information on his art and stained glass workshops may be found at the following link:


An Inspiration to the Arts

Le Lot boasts an active and adventurous artistic community. The discussion extends well beyond scenic landscapes of medieval castles and winding river valleys. Artists and artisans span a wide range of movements and mediums -- paintings, sculptures, ceramics, basketwork, ironwork and textiles. A strong current of surrealism permeates the culture, linked not only to the influence of Surrealist painter André Breton during his many years as a resident but to the irreverence and humor of the Lotois.

Villages like Saint-Cirq-Lapopie are renown in France as artist and writer sanctuaries. Saint-Cirq-Lapopie served as an inspiration to numerous artistes like Henri Martin, Paul Paquereau, Pierre Daura and André Breton called the village home. Breton declared that "above any other place in the world, in America or Europe, Saint-Cirq is my one place of enchantment: the one fixed forever. I stopped wanting to be elsewhere. I think the secret of its poetry resembles that of some of Rimbaud's Illuminations, it is the product of the rarest in perfect balance."  

The village continues to inspire. Artists can be found painting throughout Saint-Cirq-Lapopie, their work displayed studios and galleries around town.  Saint-Cirq-Lapopie's tourism office provides a "Itinéraire des Artistes" to introduce visitors to artists residing in the village. Red banners above doorways also signal artist homes and studios. Exhibition spaces include the Rignault Museum, Maisons Daura, the Château de Saint-Cirq, and the Maison de Fourdonne.

Further afield, the area is dotted with art galleries, fairs and exhibitions. From the renown Galerie d'Art Le Lion D'Or in Montcup to the Atelier - Musée Jean Lurçat in Saint-Laurent-les-Tours (near Saint Céré), art lovers will find no shortage of historical and contemporary art to experience or invest.

Featured Artist: The Stained Glass of Leo Amery

Leo Amery was born in London and discovered the art of stained glass in San Francisco, California when he was 18 years old. He studied stained glass at Central School of Art and Design under Tony Attenborough, whilst completing a degree in english litterature at Oxford University. He worked in his first studio at Rotherhithe London in 1978. Since 1985, Leo Amery has exhibited his work in both private and public gallery’s, as well as in national and international salons and exhibition centres.