Local artist keeps his dream alive despite terminal diagnosis

Published: Dec. 11, 2021 at 12:05 PM EST
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(WNDU) - The featured artist at The Fernwood Botanical Gardens has a name that rivals the intrigue of famous painters like Monet and Van Gogh.

“Brabant’s work is perfect,” said Fernwood Botanical Garden Art Gallery Curator Amanda Ward.

It’s abstract, layered, laden with meaning, just like the reason Brabant Lenting’s longtime friend, Shireen Cline, wanted his work at the Niles Art Gallery.

“When I went to go pick up his work, and they opened up the storage unit, [it was] just really emotional, just to see his studio sitting there,” Cline said. “I just knew that it had to be seen. His work needs to be seen - not be hiding away in a storage unit.”

Cline then approached Ward and asked about having a show featuring Lenting’s art.

Ward wasted no time in putting together a wall-to-wall solo show featuring his work. She knew it could be his last show.

That’s because Brabant, who is 75, is confined to a hospice bed with prostate and spinal cancer.

But Brabant says he’s not giving up. He’s always dreamed of having his art displayed in New York City.

He says just because he’s on a hospice bed, it doesn’t mean his dreams are done.

“[I] still got hope that maybe somebody in New York will trip across it [his art] and say, ‘Holy c---. This guy was a great.’”

Despite many setbacks in life, Lenting continues to persist.

“I truly believe fear eats the soul,” he says. “If you’re fearful, you’re never gonna do nothing. You know? So you gotta put aside that fear and go forge ahead with your work.”

You can see Brabant Lenting’s work for yourself at Fernwood in Niles through Sunday, January 2nd.

You can still see his work in person

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