Above: Strada, Oil on Canvas, 36 x 36 inches.
I’m working right now with two galleries. One of the galleries is called The District Gallery in Knoxville, TN. The way I was accepted into this gallery was interesting, one of those exciting moments in a career that you never forget.
I apply to many calls for artists because I want my work shown in as many states and cities as possible. In 2014, was accepted for a large art exhibit in Cincinnati, Ohio through a group called Art Design Consultants. I travelled to Cincinnati and attended the huge opening which encompassed two floors of an office building. It was announced at the opening that I had been awarded gallery representation by the District Gallery if I accepted. During the reception my painting was projected on a huge wall along with other featured artists.
I've just sent five paintings to them from my "Into the Light Series" to join a painting they already have of mine, called "Tuscan Dream". I'm excited to have this group of paintings out in the world, being shown in this beautiful gallery near the Smoky Mountains.
My family is from a small village in Canada called Saint-Raphaël. The village is north of Québec City. As a child, I remember this tiny town and other small towns like it, that were very modest but the churches very grand. When we went inside some of the churches, I felt like I was transported into another world, or as if I was inside a jewelry box. I was enchanted by the detail of the gold encrusted architecture and candles. It was more than I could take in visually. We visited large cathedrals in Quebec City, and the size and grandeur were overwhelming. The pillars evoked the feeling of being in a forest where I could get lost for days.
I had a similar experience when I visited Tuscany. While exploring the hot and noisy towns in the summer, I stopped in several cathedrals. The feeling of being transported from the worldly to other worldly was the same. I felt enveloped by the cool darkness and musty smells of the spaces, and I felt the weight of the history and tradition of the centuries-old Christian art and architectural structures of the Renaissance.
When I visited New Mexico last year, I was also struck by the churches I visited--especially the revered pilgrimage site Santuario de Chimayo. In this church, however, I was not impressed by the ornamentation and glittering gold architecture, but by the simplicity and primitive art in the wooden interior. This space is historically rich, but it’s the simplicity that makes it just as evocative as the churches I described in Canada and Tuscany.
If it’s possible to travel, I would like to spend an extended time in Spain exploring the sacred architecture of not only the churches, but the mosques and synagogues. As a lifelong student and painter of expressionism, I plan to spend part of the time in Toledo studying the paintings of El Greco.
The painting, above, called "Sanctuary" , was inspired by my exploration of sacred architecture. It was recently sold by The District Gallery in Knoxville, TN.
This painting was also included in a virtual exhibit with ECVA. ecva.org/exhibition/worship/exhibit21-CGibbs.html
I'm excited to be included in an online collection from Fountain Street Gallery in Boston. These collections help highlight my work that is being offered in 1stdibs.com It helps put the work in context with a narrative and allows viewers to enjoy the benefits of seeing one artist's work in relation to another's. Here is a link to the collection.
Sometimes as artists we can feel like our reserves for ideas and inspiration are tapped out. During these times we may feel like we are in a creative desert. I've realized that it is important to replenish our reserves and for me it begins with changing my environment. Spending time in new places fuels my creative spirit. I painted this painting called Desert Moonrise over a year after visiting Taos, New Mexico. I believe it is a conglomeration of my memories of the southwestern parts of The U.S., including New Mexico and Arizona, where I visited many years ago. The painting is not any particular place but an image from my subconscious.
I painted "The Dark Pond" after an unexpected snow fall in October, 2020. I've been interested in the pools of water as I take walks close to where I live. These small bodies of water seem to come to life in the winter after the foliage is gone and they are more exposed. The snow fall makes them even more compelling because of the contrast of the white against the dark water.
Sometimes paintings know what they want to be. These paintings seem to paint themselves and they are always the best paintings in my body of work. This painting called "Stormy Inlet" fits this narrative. Most years I travel to the New England shore. These memories exist in my subconscious and sometimes appear in my paintings. This painting derives from my memories of the coast of New England and climate of our planet. It depicts cleansing power of water and the dangers of global warming.
I'm very interested in the painter El Greco because his work is expressionist. I painted "City of Light" in 2019. It was inspired by my trip to Italy in 2018 but also by the painting called "A View of Toledo" by El Greco painted in the 1600's. I would like to study this painting in Toledo and also the architecture of the region. I'm hoping to travel to Spain as soon as it is possible to travel.
Above: City of Light, Oil on Canvas, 30 x 48 x 1.5 inches Below: Detail of "City of Light" showing the unique texture of the painting.
My style is always evolving. Through the completion of many series of paintings I have kept techniques that work for me and thrown away those that don't. This has lead me to my current style which I call textural expressionism. My work is very gestural and loose. Lately, I use my hands (with gloves) and palette knives more than brushes. I find this makes the marks I make very unique and interesting. Since the pandemic I have been more focused on nature and have completed a small series of paintings focused on water. Here is one of my latest paintings called November Reservior. I feel like this painting embodies the best of my painting skill. The painting is loose and expressive but retains the representational image of the scene.
I'm thrilled to have had the opportunity to curate a virtual exhibit/collection for Fountain Street Gallery in Boston. I'm an associate member there. One of the best things I've ever done is to get involved with this vibrant gallery.
I chose the bittersweet theme because I think a lot of us have these sensations around the holiday season. I know I do. I feel happy but nostalgic of even sad at the same time. Here is a link to the collection. www.fsfaboston.com/bittersweet-sensations
Since last March when the entire world changed because of Covid I decide to move from my studio in Easthampton MA, to my home studio in a rural area in western MA. My work was included in a virtual exhibit called "Post Pause" This exhibit featured artists from Western MA, and focused on how the pandemic may have changed their work. Here is a link to the exhibit.
- Through my paintings, I have become attentive to the splendid drama of my everyday world; how light hangs on a tree or building, the movement or stillness of water passing under a bridge, the mystery of a tunnel, a church interior or the grit of a train yard. My work is contemporary but takes cues from painters of the past.