- ARTIST STATEMENT -
Through my work I explore my own personal relationship with a variety of subjects that I have developed an important bond with. I spend a majority of my time outdoors, particularly in a few areas where I like to fish and walk my dogs. I am never in a hurry when I am there, and my mind always wanders far away. The environment puts me in a state of meditation, which for me is normal, but now suddenly I am beginning to notice life. I am awake. I am listening. Absorbing information from the water and the trees in such a way that it makes me feel connected and attached. My growing familiarity with every minute detail challenges me to appreciate these sanctuaries as relatives, rather than places I simply walk through or drive past. For instance, I try to address the spiritual and emotional impact that a particular tree has had on me by trying to understand it’s life, and by studying it’s characteristics and changes throughout the seasons, all the time asking myself, “How are we are connected?”
My goal is to continuously analyze this connectivity in an attempt to convey the possibilities that lie within the nurturing of a human’s relationship with his surroundings.
Christopher Owen Nelson thrives in the vast arid landscape of the American West. As a Colorado native, he studied fine arts at Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design where he learned classical methods in drawing and painting. While developing a deep appreciation for composition and form, Nelson focused on employing alternative materials; sculpting with used carpet, found objects and painting on glass. He continued on to pursue a career in construction, whereby gaining valuable knowledge in concrete, steel and woodworking that would eventually lay substructure for a new and innovative artistic approach. Electric power tools became primary instruments, with paints and textiles applied at later stages in conceptual evolution.
Nelson’s creativity is fathomless, as is evident in all aspects of his life. As a succesful songwriter/musician, he conveys feelings of beauty and loss, lightness and dark intertwine. These same concepts are mirrored in his visual art, where barren, leafless trees fracture solitary space. Nelson’s portraiture suggests that even the people we are the most intimate with will forever remain mysterious beings. Here, beauty is drawn from the darker aspects of life. There is a consistent thread that runs throughout all bodies of his work; a need to transform shadow and grit into something beautiful and smooth.
Critical attention and art world accolades have been swift and abundant. Early honors include the Most Promising Artist Scholarship Award, and being named as one of “21 Under 31 Emerging Artists” earmarked for success, by Southwest Art Magazine. Recently Nelson’s achievements in the arts have been featured in several national publications, including: Western Art Collector; Luxe Interiors and Design; Western Art and Achitecture; Santa Fean magazine, and American Art Collector.
Nelson’s creations reveal the dynamic nature of intrinsic existence, as thought and feeling align within a medium that is uniquely his own. Combining elements of his skills in painting, construction and songwriting, Nelson illus- trates deliberate yet subconscious narratives guided by lucid dreamscape. His work continues to grow in scale and in concept. Nelson is bound by no medium; creates in a perpetual state of research and development. Striking his own path, he cuts a wide road for future pioneers. Nelson exists in leaps and bounds. The art world follows in double time.
Without tradition, art is a flock of sheep without a shepherd. Without innovation, it is a corpse. -Winston Churchill