BRONX, N.Y. - LeRone Wilson's ten minute bike ride from his home in Harlem to the Bronx leads to a place where he may spend even more of his time.
It’s where he follows an ancient recipe, with some of his secret ingredients sprinkled in.
What he's cooking, is art. The main ingredient is Beeswax.
What You Need To Know
- LeRone Wilson is a Harlem-based artist who uses beeswax to paint and sculpt
- Beeswax art is an ancient process that was used by the Kemetic people of the Nile River Valley in Modern Day Egypt
- His work is created with a mixture of beeswax, resin and pigment
- The mix is heated so it can melt and fuse before being used for sculpting
Wilson's been a sculptor since he was twelve-years-old when he was taught by his father. He originally sculpted using metal, but has been crafting with Beeswax for around three decades.
He says it's the oldest form of painting, used by the ancient Kemetic people of the Nile River Valley, modern day Egypt.
"In order for me to create the work that I'm making, I have to show reverence for where it comes from and where it was made first, and how it was made,” said Wilson, who recently curated and worked on the Harlem Black Lives Matter mural.
Making a Beeswax painting or sculpture is meticulous work. His pieces can take months to complete.
“It's a heck of a job,” said Wilson. “It's a process, it's very time consuming and you have to have some kind of patience.”
Wilson's work sells. He's part of a group show at Columbia University for the Uptown Triennial and he's also planning his next solo show.
"I'm just staying with it and here we are,” said Wilson, who of course not only has reverence for the spirituality and history of the work, but for bees, too.
"You've got to understand bees have been on the planet for 750 million years, so, you know, the process of how they sustain life for us too has to be recognized, because without them, we can't live on this planet,” said Wilson.