Layla Fanucci: Music Teacher To International Art Sensation

Aug 31, 2017

Artist Layla Fanucci
Credit Allan Wolper for WBGO

For 25 years, Layla Fanucci, taught music at St. Helena Catholic School in California. But her life turned around when she bought paint and an art board at a Ben Franklin arts and crafts store.

Today, Layla, who never took an art class, has had her cityscapes shown at galleries and museums in Paris, Morocco, San Francisco, and New York City.

“It all happened by accident,” she said in a May, 2009 interview on Conversations with Allan Wolper. “I wanted a piece of art that was big and bold, had a lot of color and made a kind of strong statement. I went to Ben Franklin, got an art board, threw paint on it, had it framed, put it on the wall and that was my first painting.”

She called her six foot high, five foot wide work “Explosion,” and sold it to a local Episcopalian priest for $800. He got quite a bargain. Her huge, sprawling art canvases now go for up to $150,000.

One of Layla Fanucci's cityscapes
Credit Allan Wolper for WBGO

Of note, Layla and her husband, Robert, make award winning wines under the Charter Oak label. They use a technique taught to Robert by his late grandfather, Guido Ragghianti.

Original Air Date: May, 2009

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