Toad's Potted Plants - fanciful foliage for your home and garden
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Toad's Potted Plants - fanciful foliage for your home and garden

unique potted plants

Leslie Nathan Piels received her M.F.A. from the San Francisco Art Institute in 1984. She has been painting and showing her work for over 25 years. Her small paintings on wood panels are unusual compositions of rendered objects inspired by the natural world. The brightly colored paintings explore the theme of time in relation to the cycles found in nature. The minimalist scenarios depicted in the art are fanciful and mysterious at the same time.

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  • While not in her attic studio painting and watching the birds, squirrels and leaves of the trees live through the changing seasons, Leslie will most likely be outside tinkering in her garden. She’s been nurturing and embellishing her current garden for over 20 years, and her container arrangements benefit from her many experiments in composing beauty and her adventurous problem solving by trial and error. Her wealth of experience and her artistic sensibilities render potted creations that are both whimsical and mysteriously elegant.

    Leslie’s garden is like her drawings – seemingly unstructured, using playful curves, without the formality of flower or planting beds.




    Leslie can be found most days messing about in her garden. Please call or email to make an appointment to visit.

  • samples of work
  • Leslie Niels art work

    Fish made from tin and other metal found objects swim through the trees in Leslie's garden.

    Leslie Niels art work

    Stream of conscience images on a grid. The images are from nature and domestic life. The painting is about structure vs. chaos.

    Leslie Niels art work

    An alter revering the natural world. There are references to the rings inside a tree demonstrating time passing.

    Leslie Niels art work

    These are small constructions of painted bones, sticks and leaves. The top piece is a wishbone hanging on a stick, to be broken only in an emergency where luck is needed.  The middle piece is a portrait of two birds that are mated for life and live in an oak tree. The bottom piece is a caterpillar constructed of a backbone with a wishbone for antennae. This I made just for the absurdity.

    Please feel free to email Leslie at , call her at (510) 551-8144, or use the form below.





    Available to visit by appointment only, Leslie's garden is located in the Grand Lake neighborhood of Oakland, California.

    Toad's Potted Plants