Glacier on High
Oil on linen panel
24" x 18"
Oil on linen panel
36" x 24"
Running Eagle Falls
12" x 9"
The works above appeared in the
2016 A Timeless Legacy
exhibit and sale.
Kathryn Stats grew up wandering the Utah countryside on horseback, developing a keen eye for the landscape. She began her life as an artist after raising her family. Stats believes her life experiences inform her work as an artist.
Attending school was not one her favorite activities. She says, “I took art classes because they were not math. And when it came time to go to college, I didn’t. I got married so I wouldn’t have to!” The need to have a creative outlet continued to stay with her, however. In the 1970s, while living in Brazil with her family, Kathryn found herself with time on her hands and bought a small painting kit. “Every time I used art materials it would awaken something in me, so I announced to the world that I was going to be an artist.”
Stats traveled Europe, and while on a cycling trip in Russia discovered its landscape artists. She compared the land in Russia to what Utah looked like a hundred years earlier. After her trip to Russia, Kathryn started taking her work more seriously. She opened a studio and in short order received recognition for her work. She has spent countless hours developing a style that reflects a direct and honest approach to art, and to life. “I’ve never been a plein air painter, never claimed to be. But, I’ve always painted on location for my studio references. You have to be there, if you are a studio painter.”
When asked about her style, Stats answers, “I just try to get the damn paint on!” Then, she continues, “I think abstractions are very important. If I had to come up with two words, it might be Expressionist Realism. I want the rhythm and excitement. It’s more about expression than accuracy.”
Her work has been recognized for the Best Oil Award at the Maynard Dixon Country Invitational, and selected for the Permanent Collection of the International Museum of Contemporary Masters, San Antonio, Texas.
Stats first experienced Glacier National Park when she was fourteen years old. “I was driving with my grandparents and we drove up over Logan Pass on Going to the Sun Road, and thought I was losing my life right then and there.” In 2003, she was invited to participate in the invitation-only Northwest Rendezvous, in Helena, Montana. “It was the year of the big fires, but I actually loved the effect of the smoke, because it kept me from painting every little detail in my background.” During that trip Stats fell in love with Glacier National Park. “Just to sit there with you and the landscape, nothing else going on, is a wonderful experience.”
The above is an excerpt from the A Timeless Legacy – Women Artists of Glacier National Park book published by the Hockaday Museum of Art, Copyright 2015. Copies of the book are availabe in the Museum's gift shop and for online purchase here.
Dr. Van Kirke Nelson Hockaday Purchase Award 2016
Chosen by the Timeless Legacy jury and acquired for the Hockaday Permanent Collection.