John Clark Gleason
As a youth, I spent time on the Washington coast,
swam in its frigid waters and dug for clams. Later, I worked in
the woods for a lumber company and felt the high lonesome
of wind and weather. I want to impart the mind-set of those experiences
to those who view my work. I paint the mountains, waterways, and
verdant landscapes that surround us in the Northwest, and also in
the Southwest. I think about their relationships to urban experience
and to the research that supports our knowledge that the mountains,
woods and waters aid our mental health.
I have been melding the experience of that Northwest
expansiveness with corresponding colors and shapes evident in the
Southwest--a landscape of space, mountains, rushing water, red rock,
and green rivers edges. These terrains combine in my work
as necessary components of our inner/outer natural landscape. My
paintings are inspired by the world as a setting for the evolution
of the seasons and of natures elements as felt by personal
experience and imagination. I am fascinated by the monumentality
of open spaces.
I use oil and acrylic paint on canvas. I combine a
furry brush stroke with the definitive mark of simple tools to create
soft and hard areas in my landscapesvisual places of activity,
contemplation, and rest. I want to give the viewer an idea of the
skys etherealness, earths durable, linear elements,
river waters flow, and mountains majesty.
My work is colorful and celebratory. I see it as a
journey with an imaginary map that leads the viewer into a shared,
yet mysterious story. My paintings are portable, intimate, inclusive.
They embody references to experiences felt in nature and in the
minds eye, illusions and yearnings for connections with Nature
that belong to people from all walks of life, every country, race,
age, gender, and philosophy.