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LEAF DANCES - New work by Bob Young March 6 – April 17, 2020

Bob Young

Bob completed a BFA (Visual Art — Studio) at York University, Toronto, and an architecture degree at UBC, Vancouver. After working in architecture for five years, he shifted to urban planning and also worked in web design. In addition, since 2009, Bob has written fiction. Literary journals have published four of his short stories, and he has finished a novel, Coyote River. One of his stories, “Paper Icon,” appears in Polish(ed): Poland Rooted in Canadian Fiction (2017), published by Guernica Editions, Toronto. Bob has placed in and won awards. For example, in 2011, Bob made the top-ten shortlist for Hamilton’s gritLIT festival. At the Canadian Authors’ Association’s (Niagara) 2017 literary contest, he got an Honourable Mention. Bob’s full literary CV is available on his website. In painting, Bob’s awards include Second Prize at the University of Guelph’s 2010 ArtsInform Show. Earlier, in 1997, he won the Elora Festival Award at “Insights,” a regional juried show of the Elora Arts Council, Elora, Ontario. His art CV highlights his exhibitions, press mentions, and collectors.

Artist Statement

I am making semi-abstract paintings of plant species, primarily ones native to Ontario. At one end of the scale, some of these pictures show an entire tree’s silhouette. At the other end, some contain only a few leaves, intersecting and repeated with variations across the canvas. The title of each piece usually contains the species, like “black pine” or “spicebush.” I use such titles because I want to raise viewers’ knowledge and appreciation of nature — if only by a little bit. But I’m not aiming for accuracy, at least of colour. For each painting, I plan the light-dark pattern and colour scheme before I start. Applying my selected hues in glazes, thick pastes, and spatters, I build rhythms across the picture. Sometimes I include hard-edged rectangles to contrast the organic forms; other times I use only the curves found in nature. But always, creating interesting colour and rhythm is as important to me as representing trees, leaves, or flowers.

The Music

David Mott is a baritone saxophonist and composer. A graduate of the Berkeley College of Music and the Yale University School of Music, he has performed with many well know musicians including Gil Evans, I Musici de Montreal, and Stevie Wonder. Mott is a Juno winner and founded the York Jazz Orchestra at York University.