Reflections by Amy VanGaasbeck & Slade Elbert
August 6th- August 28th
Slade Elbert, Photography
Amy VanGaasbeck, Oil
Slade Elbert- Artistis Bio
Slade has spent more than forty years viewing the world through the camera lens and has learned to see the world from a unique and much smaller perspective.
Slade studied photography in college and like many, he fell in love with the works of Ansel Adams, whose work called Slade to Alaska and offered many opportunities for amazing landscape shots.
Slade led backpacking trips into Denali National and State Parks, sea kayaking trips in Blackstone bay out of Whittier and Kachemak Bay out of Homer, and his camera was always part of his gear.
For Slade, an accident in Anchorage was the beginning of seeing life with a different set of eyes. In 2006 he left Alaska and eventually moved to a remote cabin in Eastern Oregon to both focus on the style of photography he wanted to create and to write a book. It was a simple life in a simple setting, and without the distraction of town living, the images began to form. He spent days in the mountains shooting and nights writing in the small cabin.
After selling mostly landscapes, Slade displayed a show of nothing but water images…and it was his best-selling show! That was the stimulation he needed, and his work came into focus. It is Slade’s desire that the viewer stops and looks more closely at the intricate details of everyday life displayed in his most recent work.
Slade has made Eastern Oregon his home and is a general contractor specializing in custom showers and tile. When not working for his amazing clients, his hobby is buying old, neglected homes and breathing new life into them.
Slade hopes to spend the better part of each year at his cabin, editing the 2 books he has written, and traveling in his VW van with his dogs while further developing the way he sees life through the lens.
Amy Van Gaasbeck Artist Statement
AMY VANGAASBECK: ARTIST STATEMENT
Glass and reflective metal are seductively beautiful subjects to paint. The
smoothness of its texture, the transparency of glass, and a reflective surface’s
ability to reflect images all make for fascinating study. But it is in partnership
with light that glass and metal come alive. It is then glowing and brilliant,
reflective and refractive, or transparent.
My inspiration is rooted in the world around me, in manmade objects. Whether
the beauty found in the design of classic cars, or in mundane everyday
objects such as Mason jars or marbles, each painting is a reflection of life, of
memory, or of a point in space and time. Although each painting can be taken
at face value as a literal translation of the object, there are also deeper ideas
hidden within, recalling memories and emotions associated within those
The clarity of reflection adds a spiritual dimension - its transparency and
mirror surfaces give different insights on the human condition. In more than
one way can one 'see through' the images. Glass can be a window or a
doorway, can suggest isolation or entrapment, and can also reflect insight to
inner life and thoughts. Glass and reflective metal are surreal materials - it is
there and yet not there. You see the surface, but do you really see the
surface? You see what is reflected in it, or what is beyond it.
In painting these reflective elements, although the end product is a realistic
looking piece, I find an exercise in abstract thinking. The process of creating
the illusion of glass and metal involves breaking down the image into
individual shapes and colors, and when viewed as a whole, creates a finished
object. Similar to life, sometimes we only see bits and pieces of what is going
on around us, but once we step back, we can get a clear perspective on the