Chateau de Belcastel & AFA Gallery

Redefining galleries in the 21st century.
Heidi Leigh
Work Life
  • Business Description

    Heidi Leigh has owned and operated a dozen galleries since 1984. Her inspiration and drive are rooted in love and admiration for artwork that is wildly imaginative and rooted in technical virtuosity.

    Heidi was on the curatorial committee and the board of directors for MoCCA (The Museum of Comic & Cartoon Art) for 8 years until it closed in 2012. She has served as an advisor for The Walt Disney Co. and Art World Magazine, a consultant for Christie’s East and Sotheby’s auction houses, authored numerous articles, and curated museum exhibitions at many major institutions including The William Benton Museum of Art, and NY Historical Society. Heidi is recognized as an expert Art Appraiser by The Library of Congress for popular and applied graphic and cartoon art.

    Heidi is invested in making art accessible via educational initiatives. She has conducted seminars for university students, hosted Masterclasses and lectured on collecting animation art at the NY Art Expo in 2002 and 2003. Heidi has collaborated with many organizations over the years to host events that benefit museums and nonprofit organizations, and has acted as a mentor for the Westchester Association of Women Business Owners, The Westchester Arts Council, and The American Crafts Council.

    Heidi is a top expert in the art of illustration by such iconic American Illustrators as Charles Schulz, Theodor Geisel, and Maurice Sendak, among others. In 2012 she curated a museum tour, “The Maurice Sendak Memorial Exhibition,” which opened in 2013 at The Bowers Museum in LA. The collection then traveled to The New Britain Museum of American Art, the Walt Disney Family Museum, and is still touring today.

    Nicholas Leone’s dream of owning a castle with a moat and a drawbridge became a reality in 2005 after he and Heidi discovered Chateau Belcastel in the Aveyron region of France. They acquired the property with her intention to create a sprawling art gallery within the magnificent medieval fortress. Today, Chateau visitors are inspired by a rich historical tour that includes collections of paintings, sculpture and original armor. The Mayor of the little village made Leigh and Leone official “citizens of honor” in 2006.
  • Mission

    To promote art and culture. To make friends and have fun along the way. To be wildly successful and take others with me. I want to redefine galleries in the 21st century, and create a foundation that provides free or low-cost healthcare to established Artists working in America.
  • About "Life"

    Have fun along the way. Be wildly successful and take others with me!