“Observant, patient and down to earth, somehow Kevin Ledo is still an artist with a boldness hard to miss. His round-the-world schedule has him in demand for painting massive murals from Lebanon to his hometown in Montreal—his nine-story Leonard Cohen portrait is world-record worthy to say the least—while still finding time to enrich his artistic talent on canvas. Diligence and focus has led to a striking series of subjects confined within golden lines in feminine or masculine form. With a color scheme filtering a hint of retro seductiveness, his moody subjects seem to captivate its spectator.” –Stick Together Arts
Ledo grew up in a mix of urban and ethnic cultures in Montreal, raised by Portuguese parents from the Azores Islands. While art and painting have always been part of his life, his artistic practice officially started in 2005. Since then, his work has given him the opportunity to live in other places such as Taiwan, Vancouver, Costa Rica, Guatemala and China. Kevin Ledo lives and works in Montreal, Canada. Ledo finished his studies of Illustration and Design at Dawson College in 1999.
Ledo has participated in several mural festivals and public art initiatives in Canada and around the world, such as MURAL in Montreal, Canada, PangeaSeed Sea Walls in Toronto, Canada, FIAP in Cancún, Mexico, AptART in Zarqa, Jordan and Beirut, The Raw Project in Miami and Denver, and recently at Street Prints in Christchurch and Mount Maunganui, New Zealand; among others.
Ledo has otherwise been featured in many art media outlets such as GQ Magazine, Juxtapoz Magazine, Street Art News, My Modern Met, Artist a Day, Montana Cans blog, and Cool Hunting. As well, his work has been written about and featured on television and in multiple news outlets including The New York Times, LA Times, The New Yorker, The Guardian, National Geographic, Yahoo! News, Washington Times, The National Post, Toronto Star, La Presse, CBC The National, CBC Arts, CBC Radio1, Global News, CTV News, The Globe and Mail, The Montreal Gazette, Cult MTL and more.
Kevin Ledo’s artistic practice crosses back and forth through the boundaries of mural, street art, fine art, and art installation. While there has been a consistent exploration in portraiture and the human form, the last few years have opened Ledo up to abstract art, mark making and colour theory, and a quest to integrate these seemingly opposite disciplines.
Ledo traces his influences and inspiration to a multitude of forces including psychology and neuroscience, religious iconography, music and design. Firmly grounded in classical painting techniques and materials while plugged into contemporary perspectives, Ledo also brings his elegant approach of realism to his compositions.
The subject and approach to Kevin Ledo’s artwork changes according to whether it be public art or in fine art. While there is a common visual thread between these different activities, his public art has several different considerations that are taken into account in his process, such as the neighbourhood the mural is set to be in; the history of the area and the audience. Ledo’s public murals are often celebrations of people and diversity, and aim to relate to the communities they are found in.
On the other hand, Ledo’s studio work serves to help him understand his own mind and the mind of others; exploring the constructs that make up one’s character, flirting with metaphysics, individual divinity and beauty. In the studio Ledo functions intuitively, coming to understand what the work is about as it unfolds. Whenever possible, Ledo photographs the subjects he uses as reference.