Artist Profile: Salt Lake City
The Most Important Thing
David Estes talks stills, life and painting
Like many artists, David Estes didn't start out thinking art would be a viable living. He studied it in college, but didn't immediately pursue painting as a career. After a fellow artist encouraged him to work in oils, though, he became hooked, and over the past decade has built an excited patron base. Though he'll occasionally paint landscapes and figures, Estes says he's really drawn to the still life, painting the menagerie objects that find their way into his Millcreek studio. He's part of an exhibit of still-life painters this month at the Eccles Art Center in Ogden. While his iPod shuffled, we talked with him about fear, painting, and the joys of the studio; and let the camera roll as he worked on a large painting of a crumpled beer can.
Exhibition Review: Sal
The Pure Object
An end and a beginning for Roland Thompson
In his new work, Roland Thompson has gone to the core of his aims and has created pure objects. These pieces are interlocking lines of colored metal, with no other compositional elements. �The stripes are the format," Thompson says. "There is no border, the structure is the format. In the other works the structure and the format cooperate, here I have gotten away from that.� It is the end of a journey, for Thompson, and at the same time, a new beginning.
Thompson started painting when he was 13, and has been at it for nearly 30 years. From a young age, the structural and tactile qualities of works has always fascinated him. �I remember walking up to paintings and looking at how they were made," he says. "I love every aspect of them. I didn�t only look at the image but I looked at the brush stroke, the color; even when I was little I was looking at paintings more formally, I was looking at how a painting was made rather than only looking at the image. I looked at shape, color, thickness of the paint.�
That interest led to the development of his own work, non-objective pieces that concentrate on formal elements and highlight the structural possibilities of an artwork. Metal, his principal medium for the past twelve years, was key to the development of his personal style. “I realized I can make shaped canvases," he says. "I was looking for ways to make shaped canvases, and metal is easy to work with, it’s stable, it doesn’t warp like wood does. I realized I could cut it into any shape I wanted and it would be stable.”” For Thompson, that ability to shape has become and absolute requirement for the kind of work he does.