"I look at my paintings not as individual pieces but rather as a living, breathing and constantly changing body of work. It really does take on a life of it's own," ---- Blu Smith
Blu Smith's subject matter is based on organic shapes with strong ties to nature, balanced with cavernous spaces that are filled with light so as to glow with an atmospheric quality.
Typically, Smith begins with broad washes and textures, pulling out and developing 3D shapes within the structures. He then attempts to resolve the surface with incisive line drawing.
2016 February- Kurbatoff Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
2015 April- The Daffodil Gallery, Edmonton, Canada
2014 September- The Avenue Gallery, Victoria, Canada
2014 February- Kurbatoff Gallery, Vancouver, Canada
2013 September- Webster Galleries, Calgary, Canada
2013 February - The Avenue Gallery, Victoria, Canada
2011 March- The Art Gallery Of Greater Victoria, Canada
2010 April- Gallery at Matticks Farm, Victoria, Canada
2008 February- On Canvas Gallery, Victoria, Canada
2004 November- Hambleton Fine Art, Vancouver, Canada
2002 August- Signature Spaces, Victoria, Canada
2001 August- Romano Deco, Victoria, Canada
1993 Pop, Vancouver, Canada
2015 Sept- The Affordable Art Fair, New York
2015 April- Love Art Fair, Toronto Canada
2012 December- "Red Dot" Art Fair, Miami Florida
"My work is about the diversity of two different states, the transitions between the two. The real interest lies in bridging the gap between structure and space, foreground and background." ---- Blu Smith
FAi: Where did you grow up?
Blu Smith: I grew up in Vernon, a small town in the interior of British Columbia, Canada. In 1989 at 21 I moved to Victoria on Vancouver Island off the West coast of British Columbia.
FAi: When did you realize you wanted to be an artist?
Blu Smith: I had always been into art as far back as I can remember. I was always drawing NHL goaltenders or sketching the characters from the rock group KISS. I worked my way through art school without a clear idea as to where the journey would lead. I had hoped a career in an 'art related field' would take shape but never seriously considered a career as a fine artist. I worked as a sign painter and graphic designer for years but always continued to paint. It wasn't until I did some traveling through Europe and was able to see in person many of the masters I had studied that my desire to be an artist took shape. I came home with a plan...I needed to infuse my work with the passion it was missing. I completely changed styles from realism to abstraction and began the long road as a serious, passionate artist.
FAi: Who are your influences?
Blu Smith: I would have to say that the artists of the 'New York School' have been the most influential in my early development as an abstract artist. De Kooning, Rothko, Kline and pioneers of Canadian abstraction like Jack Shadbolt.
FAi: What was the extent of your art education? Who were your mentors?
-Diploma in Fine Arts at Okanagan College
-Bachelors of Fine Art University of Victoria
-Donald Harvey, instructor of painting at University of Victoria was my biggest mentor.
FAi: What is your greatest achievement?
Blu Smith: My greatest achievement has been getting to where I am today. This path has been a tremendous amount of work and commitment. The persistence to this pursuit as artists is what separates us from all other people. The years perfecting a craft only for the dream of autonomy through creativity. I am very proud to be a professional working artist, making a living doing what I love and inspiring others.
FAi: What is the greatest challenge you have faced?
Blu Smith: I would say the biggest challenge I face on a daily basis is finding the balance between work and life. This is especially true when art became my sole profession and source of income. This desire to constantly move forward and grow my career tends to overshadow the 'now'. The enjoyment of life's little pleasures and accomplishments can easily get missed. I think this will always be a work in progress for me. "Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life."
FAi: What are your plans for the future?
Blu Smith: My future plans are to develop my brand and expand into new and bigger markets. I mean it's really about moving forward. My career as an artist closely parallels the work itself. Just as my artwork needs to grow and evolve over time so must the path of my career. It's not in my personality to stand still.