News : 2014

"Visual Arts Preview: Clay Ellis"
Fish Griwkowsky for the Edmonton Journal

Visual arts preview: Clay Ellis show opens at Peter Robertson Gallery

Edmonton JournalSeptember 12, 2014


 A detail of Bunkhouse Wall / Weather Report, an acrylic by Edmonton artist Clay Ellis up at Peter Robertson Gallery, part of his sculpture and painting show in the we manner. Photograph by: Fish Griwkowsky, Edmonton Journal

Exhibit: in the we manner

Artist: Clay Ellis, Edmonton

Photo: Bunkhouse Wall / Weather Report, acrylic on canvas, 45” x 53”

Show: running through Sept. 30 at Peter Robertson Gallery, 12304 Jasper Ave.

Description: With chunky pastels embedded on the canvas in thick tubes, this painting has a comic-bookish “modern art” nostalgia, as if Batman was seeking clues at some ’80s art show. But Ellis pulls his colours from childhood memories of ranch life — spotted cows, green pastures and the blood-red familiar of barns. This painting was partially inspired by the Weather Report’s 1977 album Heavy Weather. He and his siblings used to paint over each other’s work — including tributes to album covers — on a bunkhouse walls.

The artist’s words: “If you don’t have your own vocabulary, then what are you doing? The images I had as a kid are not going to go away.”         — Fish Griwkowsky