Husband and wife art team to exhibit work at Wayland gallery

Laila and Ion Ionesco, a husband and wife art team, will display their work at Wayland Baptist University's Abraham Art Gallery in an exhibit titled "Two Hearts, One Vision."

The exhibit begins October 12, with an opening reception that evening from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. A jewelry trunk show of work by Ion Ionesco will be held Oct. 12 and 13 in the gallery, which is located in the Mabee Learning Resources Center on the Wayland campus.

A resident of Santa Fe, New Mexico, Laila Ionesco works primarily in oils but said her work follows no real theme.

"As humans, we all have questions about our existence, its scope, goal and finality," she said. "At some time or another, we all wondered why are we here, where are we from, for how long and who does hold the lease. I offer my own interpretation and explanation of what I had glimpses of in meditative moments. Like many of my contemporaries in all domains of the arts, I am convinced that I am basically an instrument through which Divinity speaks and, at my level, the creative process is the closest thing to Universal integration."

"My work attempts to conscientiously capture glimpses of my subconscious mind. That is why there are no predilect subjects I work with, but rather a wide range of themes, from feelings and emotions, to comments on religion, to comments on society, to portraits, events from my life or scenes alluding to mysterious interaction," she added.

A native of Romania, Ion Ionesco studied metalsmithing under master jewelers as a young man, inheriting their "Old World" traditions of the craft. After immigrating to the United States, he worked as a jeweler and a jewelry designer before opening his own fine jewelry studio.

"With each new piece, I strive to incite an emotional response similar to the one that started me working on that particular project," Ion said. "The intrinsic beauty of materials I use inspire me greatly and give me the unequaled joy of being able to create a flawlessly crafted work of art."

Like his wife, Ionesco finds spirituality in his work and said his pieces carry a powerful emotional charge.

"Precious materials have qualities that make me compare them to the transcendental nature of the human soul: wrought in fire, quenched in water, molded into an unlimited variety of shapes, shining in the sun, but forever enduring," he said. "I like to think that precious and semi-precious stones match the infinite range of human feelings and emotions."

Ionesco's jewelry blends a variety of metals and precious stones to create unique pieces with classic looks.

The Ionesco exhibit will be featured through November 16. The Abraham Art Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekdays and 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Admission is free.