Brian Gordy

Brian Gordy, a resident of Muncie, Indiana, holds an art degree from Ball State University. He taught art in public schools at the university level and privately for 25 years. A signature member of American Watercolor Society, Transparent Watercolor Society of America, Watercolor Society of Indiana and the Red River Watercolor Society, Gordy exhibits throughout the United States, and has earned numerous awards for his watercolors. His works are included in the permanent collections of The Sheldon Swope Art Museum (Terre Haute, IN), The Richmond Art Museum (Richmond, IN), Minnetrista Cultural Center (Muncie, IN), and many corporate and private collections. Gordy’s work has been featured in The Best of Watercolor Vol 3, Arts Indiana, Snowy Egret, and Lake Superior magazines. His watercolors and original, hand-gilded frames have earned him the official designation of Indiana Artisan by the state of Indiana.

Throughout his career, Gordy’s paintings have depicted the landscapes of the Midwest and the north woods of Michigan and Canada. A solo exhibition, “White River Turtles: Watercolors by Brian Gordy” at Minnetrista, Oct. 2007 – Jan. 2008, introduced a series of 35 paintings of freshwater turtles in their natural habitat. Turtles continue to serve as a subject in the painter’s portfolio.

As a subject, the turtle is a model of structure, function, and subtle, organic beauty. As a being, it conjures up ancient legends and several mythological references. My intent is to show the classic beauty of the turtle form, as well as their peculiar tendency to arrange themselves in dynamic composition. I also hope to bring a broader human awareness to the survival challenges turtles face in the world.

Artist Statement:
"An artist might rely on any number of stimuli to direct the creative process. In my case, the medium of transparent watercolor is key to that stimulus. The fluidity of the suspended color and its active attraction to the paper is a dynamic field of energy that profoundly influences the work. Awareness of the inherent properties of these materials: pigment characteristics such as weight, floatability, liftability and mixing compatibility; paper surface, density and absorption tendencies, is key to allowing the medium to assist with the act of painting a watercolor. Although it is necessary that my choice of subject matter is meaningful to me intrinsically, that choice is influenced to a great degree by thinking like a watercolor painter. I am driven to paint a subject with a particular delivery of content in mind, but the delivery of this content must have the potential to translate well into the process of creating a transparent watercolor painting.

The subject of water in nature is an overarching theme in my work. I regard it as a theater on which subject matter happens. Reflections of surroundings playing off solid forms; the transition of forms from “in the water” to “on the water”; the effect water has on a surface itself; all areas of interest, as well as the affect that a live form such as a turtle, fish or bird have toward animating the theater of water."

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