1953 (Beograd, capitol of former Yugoslavia)
Photo of Lila Hafner
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Lila Hafner, Mountain View, CA
Original Paintings, Watercolors
Hand-Embellished Limited Editions
Lila Hafner was born 1953 in Beograd capitol of former Yugoslavia. After graduating from the Academy of Performing Arts, Hafner gained international recognition as a ballerina, and as an honored member of several major ballet companies, she has virtually danced around the world.
Lila Hafner loved the ballet above all. In her early twenties. She was brought to the USA by ballet to pursue her career. However, in 1977 her career as a ballerina abruptly ended when she sustained a severe injury while performing. Left with no career for what she had been trained for all her life, she could not bear to be out of the spotlight. Fortunately, she found the strength by turning to her past, and devoting herself completely to her second love, painting.
One feels that there is no challenge Hafner cannot meet in todays world. She has chosen watercolor for an adventure where the artist has only one chance to get an observation correct. She is a woman dedicated to excellence in everything she does. Each time the brush touches the paper, the stroke and color have to be perfect, the same as performing on the stage. This artistically dangerous and difficult technique allows no changes, no second chances. It takes artistic courage to paint with watercolors.
For Hafner watercolor provides a direct means of setting down momentary visual feelings, while experimenting with the emotional joys of colors. Daring atmospheric scenes, transparent and opaque washes and fluid brushstrokes are part of the technique. It is her use of watercolors power that captures atmospheric conditions. She handles the colors with ease allowing for spontaneity. Hafners strong use of watercolor washes with bright colors and dark shadows convey an intense light.
Her most recent works have taken a new direction and draws its imagery from the world of nature. Watercolor is her medium. She captures her landscapes spontaneously and evokes the fleeting effects of light with vivid colors and pattern. As in an impressionistic manner, Hafner closes into a scene to create images of intense color, which at a distance become her most magical intimate observations.
Mrs. Hafners paintings do not face us with problems and do not impose the painful obligations of deciphering them. Her paintings simply do not expect nor demand the effort of communication, they offer themselves directly and conquer us by their simplicity, their unassuming and poetic quality.
A European art critic said: "Lila Hafner is an enfant superb as she makes art." Hafner today says: "None of us deep within our soul has to be completely grown up. I believe that our human spirit can transfer us back into our childhood." With her eyes wide open she transferred to paper the poetic views of life in a contemporary way. In turn she transfers us back into a time where we had the opportunity to be natural, unaffected and open to new adventures. Her paintings create a time where all seems well.
Amsterdam, Boston, Brussels, Caracas, Carmel, Chicago, Dusseldorf, Los Angeles, New York City, Palo Alto, Rome, San Francisco, San Mateo, Woodside, Toronto and Vienna are just a partial listing of career events for Hafner, which includes over 60 exhibits throughout the world.
Mrs. Hafners works are included in numerous private, public and corporate collections throughout the world. Mrs. Hafner currently resides in Mountain View, California.
ONE WOMAN EXHIBITIONS
1977 BM Gallery, Dusseldorf, Germany
1979 28th Street Gallery, New York
1980 Gallery Bora, Dusseldorf, Germany
1980 Group 21 Galleries, Los Gatos, CA
1980 Art Expo, Los Angeles, CA
1981 Gallery Kauftreff, Moers, Germany
1981 Art Expo, San Francisco, CA
1982 Newell Hill Gallery, Walnut Creek
1982 Raiffeisenbank, Neukirchen-Vluyn, Germany
1984 Calic Contemporary Design, San Francisco, CA
1990 Stanford Fine Art, Palo Alto, CA
1995 Only You Designs, Woodside, CA
1996 Only You Designs, Woodside, CA
1998 Peninsula Exposure Gallery, San Mateo, CA
2002 Harrisons, Stanford, Palo Alto, CA
AWARDS AND PRIZES
1979 "Fiesta de Arts", Los Gatos, CA
- First place for the best painting
1979 "Contemporary Primitives" Lincoln Center, NYC
- First Prize for the best graphic.
1979 "April 79" YAVA - 1 Gallery, NYC
- Special recognition
1980 "Art Expo" Los Angeles, CA
- Critic's choice
1983 "Art City on Rhine", Dusseldorf
- Best original painting
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