Craig Crawford (virtual) Artist Talk

Join us for an enlightening conversation between SCGA Curator, Cole Miller and artist Craig Crawford (who will be appearing via Zoom!)

5:30PM – 6:30PM, Thursday, October 22, 2020

In-person spots are limited to 20 patrons to allow for safe distancing, masks are required and available should you need one, register here today*:

Current Sign-up Sheets

Title Date Open Spots  
Art Talk with Craig Crawford October 22, 2020 16

*Please note: for those wishing to view the artist talk from the comfort of their own abodes, this program will be presented on Facebook Live, so tune into the Gallery FB page @ 5:30PM on 10/22 to watch along.

About Craig Crawford, the artist:

Artist Statement:

I paint traditional oil paintings on wooden panels and canvas. Using different techniques such as glazing and scumbling I am able to create atmospheric effects that imparte an emotion and mood. The sense of place is important in my paintings. I create a narrative that often includes the past, present and future. The narratives are pulled from my personal thoughts and experiences. I rarely paint directly from life, often I do use photographs for references. Over the course of my life I have seen places and experienced moments that trigger an understanding or thought process that is worked into a painting. Symbols are used to impart meaning. My paintings develop over time, often taking years to fully realize. Adding and subtracting detail until it works aesthetically and as a narrative. The spiral orientation and dark perimeter of the paintings has a way of privatising the image for the viewer. Framing is important to the presentation and I construct them from moldings bought at the hardware store. I try to use what is ready available, sometimes including recycled material. They are inspired by early American frames from the 18 century. The organic design of some of the frames is intended to add to the intimacy and imparte a psychological effect. I hope the personal experiences and ideas brought forth in my paintings spark a conversation about our universal experience of living and how history and the passage of time impact our sense of place.

Artist Biography:

I was born in 1964 in Sacramento California. My father, a research meteorologist studying nuclear winter, was offered a job in AIken SC at the Savannah River Site. In 1972 we left Livermore California and drove across the country arriving in Aiken at the end of the summer. I was eight years old and the arrival made a lasting impression on me psychologically. Since that time I have been observing southern culture and grappled with how to interpret it. Poverty, race relations, religion, and the brutal history have been at the forefront of my thoughts. I grew up drawing and painting and ended up going to both Young Harris College in Georgia and the University of South Carolina where I graduated with a BFA. After college I felt as though I had not learned how paintings were made. I wanted to learn more about materials and techniques in order to express myself more accurately through making paintings. In 1989 I was offered an apprenticeship in the study of painting conservation with Olin Conservation, inc. in Washington DC. Over the eight years studying paintings in the studio that were in need of conservation treatments I developed an eye for a particular aesthetic. That aesthetic is present in my paintings. The time studying painting conservation was invaluable to my understanding of American painting both aesthetically and culturally. In 1999 I moved back to SC and started my own private painting conservation practice, Crawford Conservation Inc, where I have primarily treated paintings for museums, private collectors, and universities. Notable projects include the treatment of Thomas Sully’s copy of Gilbert Stuart’s Lansdowne portrait of George Washington for the North Carolina State Capitol, portrait by Francois Fleishbein titled “ Betsy” for the Historic New Orleans Collection, and ceiling paintings that are part of the Brumidi Corridors at the US Capitol in Washington DC.

Between 1990 and 2008 I had numerous solo shows in commercial galleries in Charleston SC, Charlotte NC, and St Simons isl Ga. The paintings were primarily traditional oil paintings on canvas and wooden panels. After the recession beginning in 2008 many of the galleries closed or were struggling to sell paintings. At that time I decided to change my focus and paint my surroundings now living in rural SC. The paintings have taken longer to complete, slowing my output. Since that time I have had two solo shows at the Greenville County Museum of Art, a solo show at the Campbell House Southern Pines NC, and inclusion in the show titled Nature/Nurture in Lake City SC. I have been collected by numerous private individuals and the Greenville County Museum of Art.