Brenda Parisi, long time member of Louisiana Art & Artists' Guild, appreciated art in its many forms since she was a child. Her mother and grandmother told Brenda about art and taught her to appreciate beautiful objects, among them, tapestries and embroidery. Her mother did ceramics and her grandmother quilted, each of them creating beautiful works of art. Brenda reports that she has been painting for over thirty-seven years. She believes that "art enhances all of life and influences much in your life, from buying a car to furnishing your wardrobe to decorating your home." While art is a huge part of Brenda's life - "it's not everything!" She loves life and people, so her energies are divided among many, many activities, not the least of which is taking time to be with and help others in whatever ways she can.
Brenda traveled to Europe a total of 22 times, and in the course of her travels, she became desirous of exhibiting her own art work in Italy. Advised and assisted by Maria Abbadessa, Brenda put together a European Culture Art Exchange, a "traveling show" of two European artists, Maria Abbadessa and Filippo Minolfi, and Louisiana Art & Artists' Guild artists, Geraldine Broussard, Greg Kiger, Carol Creel, Ken Heard, Norma Roy and herself. The show traveled through Italy and Spain. When it came to the United States, it showed in Louisiana at Jackson Museum, and in Baton Rouge, at Louisiana State Archives, Sherwood Country Club, Baton Rouge Little Theatre, the Guild Gallery and the Main Library on Goodwood. Brenda was honored as Director of the traveling European Culture Art Exchange in an article published in the February, 1997 issue of The Register.
While she is basically self-taught, Brenda did study art with Kathleen Lanigan, President of the Guild Gallery on Greenwell Springs Road. She says the Guild really broadened her horizons - especially Geraldine Broussard, who was her mentor and is a very good friend to this day. Brenda is immeasurably grateful to Geraldine who was a real mover-and-shaker, a very "intelligent, sweet, loving and kind lady who always had time to help," and who was most instrumental in Brenda getting her art career going. One of the biggest changes Brenda made in her art was in going from smaller to larger paintings, on the strong advice of Greg Kiger, Ken Heard and Kathy Stone.
Brenda fondly recalls that Sue Barry, Norma Roy's good friend, threw a big, lovely party honoring Norma after she died - it seemed as though everyone was there! Brenda shared old photos and lots of her Guild memorabilia. In conclusion, Brenda said, "Everyone in the Guild was wonderful, really - All beautiful people!"