The paintings of Rodica Iliesco, known professionally as Rody, capture a romantic and dream-like vision of Paris both during and after the Belle Epoque (1871-1914). She depicts a city of love, light, and beauty, filled with artists and poets whose lifestyle is free, fun, and as sparkling as champagne. Rody also loves to paint the grittier side of old Paris, with loose women and men who gamble and go looking for a fight. She takes inspiration from old photographs of the city and her own imagination, wanting her work to serve as an escape from reality. In every composition, Rody adds a splash of red, to “wake up the eye” and give her paintings a sense of joy and boldness.
Rody was born in Romania, but grew up listening to her father’s stories of being an artist in Paris in the 1920s. When she finally traveled to Paris to study at the École nationale supérieure des Beaux-Arts, she says she felt like she had come home. Rody is now an Honorary Citizen of the Republic of Montmartre.