Memphis- Roger Clayton will be exhibiting his recent paintings at Christian Brothers University (CBU). The exhibit entitled “Notes on a Fine Day” will be displayed January 11- February 21, 2008 in the Beverly and Sam Ross Gallery, with an opening reception on Friday, January 11 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the gallery on the lower level of Plough Memorial Library,
Clayton is a native Memphian and graduate of the University of Memphis (B.F.A. painting). He lived in New York City from 1981 to 1988 and has lived in Nashville, TN since moving from New York. Clayton says “My paintings employ a simple narrative that goes back a thousand years. They are vague, pure, instinctive and empty (not to mention colorful). Their coarse beauty is raw and imperfect. Much of what I paint has been influenced by Japanese art-from ancient ink paintings to contemporary anime- and from similar forms of poetry and prose.” Roger’s wife is from Tokyo and, along with their daughter, they make frequent trips to Japan.
Clayton further elaborates on the style of his art, “A court official, during the Song period of ancient China, compiled a catalog for paintings entitled Xaunbe baupu. It was an attempt to organize the images used in painting into classic Confucian ideology. So animals, flowers, mountains, and figures were acknowledged as having particular symbolic or metaphorical values. Though consciously I am not trying to paint Confucian ethics, I do believe in a similar pictorial kinship and have been influenced by their rich conceptual meanings. Therefore, I think these images express concepts such as balance, harmony, conflict, or awareness. And surprisingly, this timeless subject matter is shared with the rural South. I grew up around stories and images of animals in nature and the lessons they taught. In the South, the character of a bunny could be quite noble.”
Clayton’s paintings have been exhibited at Frist Center for the Visual Arts, TAG Art Gallery, and Zeitgeist Art Gallery all in Nashville, TN; Donguri-Korokoro Gallery in Tokyo, Japan; and Art St. Louis in St. Louis, MO.
Concurrently showing in the foyer of the gallery will be an exhibition of photography and 3-D artwork by members of Artists’ Link.
For more information, please contact the CBU Beverly and Sam Ross Gallery at (901) 321-3432 or visit the website at www.cbu.edu/library/gallery. ###