Leeanna Chipana (b. 1981) was born on Long Island, NY to an immigrant Quechuan-Peruvian father and American mother. She studied classical drawing at the Grand Central Atelier and received her MFA in painting from the New York Academy of Art in 2017. She has participated in group exhibitions at the Long Island Museum, the Heckscher Museum, Southampton Arts Center, Wausau Museum of Contemporary Art, Amelie A. Wallace Gallery of SUNY Old Westbury, and the Wilkinson Gallery. Woman with Alpaca, a painting included in the group exhibition, “Parallels & Peripheries: Practice & Presence” at the New York Academy of Art was featured in the New York Times. Chipana was also included in American Art Collector Magazine’s “10 Painters to Watch” and was named by Miradas Magazine as one of eighteen Peruvian-Americans of note living and working in the US.
Drawing from her Quechuan and American identity, local Indigenous-Latinx communities and media portrayals of Central and South American immigrants Leeanna creates figurative oil paintings of emboldened and timeless indigenous women in both dreamed and potentially real environments. Employing Incan, Aztec and Mayan iconography, her background in classical European oil painting, Leeanna’s work challenges the conventions of traditional figure and landscape painting. Subtly blurring the lines between classical and modern forms of representation her work examines societal assumptions and views of the Indigenous-Latinx body.