Janet Lesniak



I am continually inspired by the landscape; the fusing of the dramatic vistas that I have been blessed to live in and the unseen internal landscape.

As a lifelong student of contemplative practices, this merging of the physical/visable with the emotional/experienced is what interests me. Color, contour and light revealed in these imagined landscapes are the foundation of my work. Encaustic offers the opportunity to express my attraction to and passion for bold color and simultaneous translucency; the unexpected play of light between layers of wax that gives life and expression to imagination.



Janet began painting when she was eight years old. Inspired by Jackson Pollack, she painted on large pieces of newsprint upon which she would create big paintings full of splatters and carefully placed brush strokes. The feeling of ‘dancing with the paint’…choreographing shape and color into brilliant pieces of art enchanted her and seduced her into a love of painting and established her identity as an artist.

Janet attended Boston University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Occupational Therapy with a minor in Fine Arts. She worked for many years developing creative arts therapy programs in health care settings across New England and California. For over 20 years she managed the ‘family business’, the legendary Big Sur River Inn, welcoming visitors from around the world to the California coast. In 2009, Janet moved to Wellfleet to be closer to her children and grandchildren and became the first Executive Director of Wellfleet Preservation Hall…a community cultural center celebrating the intersection of arts, culture and community. All of these professional adventures have been inspired by and fortified her commitment to healing and wellness through creativity and community engagement.

Making art has always been the heart center for Janet. In Big Sur, Janet studied with Ronna Emmons and Erin Gafill, exploring color, shape, light and texture in the context of the ever-changing Big Sur vistas. Now living on Cape Cod where the light is incomparable, encaustic became her medium of choice in expressing the brilliant color and luminosity of the landscape. Janet is represented by the Frying Pan Gallery in Wellfleet and Orleans, Massachusetts


Website: janetlesniak.com