My New Artist’s Statement

Two months ago, I wrote about writing this. I just realized that I haven’t actually posted what I’d written.

So, here is my new artist’s statement. It says pretty much the same thing my 2009 statement says, but I think this one says it better.

‘Urban Landscapes’ by Kyle Clements
Artist Statement for 2011

My paintings seek to capture the energy and speed of our sensory rich contemporary life.

Although I have lived in Toronto for several years, my rural upbringing still leaves me feeling unaccustomed to this visually dense urban jungle. Filled with buzzing signs and flashing lights, everything in the city screams for attention simultaneously. It’s an overwhelming experience that saturates my senses and fills me with excitement.

I begin each piece by walking through a neighbourhood, camera in hand, documenting what I see and taking note of what I experience. When I find myself taking in this abundant visual stimuli faster then my mind can process it, I sometimes relax the muscles in my eyes, and allow the lights and signs to blur together into a beautiful dance of form and colour. I use these experiences as fuel for my creative process, where I aim to capture and amplify these feelings through the use of acrylic paint. I am not interested in rendering or representing a specific location. My intention is to distill and highlight the raw essence of the urban experience.

To replicate such dynamic experiences in the static medium of paint, I begin by creating a digital collage out of my photographs. I arrange and layer the images in a way that allows portions of each photograph to be visible simultaneously, creating a tangled web of overlapping and intersecting planes.

I use these digital collages in place of rough sketches. They become the guide I follow while I sketch out the paintings. Once this outline is complete, I discard the digital image and approach the painting as an abstract piece. I am far more concerned with with generating a dynamic and visually interesting composition than with any sense of geographical accuracy.

Kyle Clements

What do you think?
Does is explain everything? Spoil the magic and mystery? Sound overly pretentious? Make you better understand my art?

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Kyle Clements

Kyle Clements is a Toronto-based artist and nerd. During his thesis at the Ontario College of Art and Design, Kyle began working on his Urban Landscapes series, a body of work that aims to capture the energy and excitement of life in the fast-paced urban environment. After graduating from OCAD in 2006, Kyle spent a year living in Asia to gather source material and experience in a different kind or urban environment. His work is vibrant and colourful. Whether painting the harsh Northern landscape, or capturing the overwhelming buzz of life in the city, his acrylic paintings hover between representation and abstraction.

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