New Representation: my art is now available at the Assiniboia Gallery in Regina! They are located at 2266 Smith Street, a vibrant, bustling part of town.

July - October, 2017: A small selection of my work,
courtesy of Darrell Bell Gallery, is available at Boffins restaurant (111 Research Drive, U of S campus).

Ongoing: my 8x8" original oil paintings are available exclusively at Darrell Bell Gallery located in the Canada Building in downtown Saskatoon. As well, some of my large oil paintings are now available in this beautiful local gallery.

November 10, 2016: I was interviewed by Daily Paintworks as their Spotlight Artist for a week! Read my interview on the DPW News blog!

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Sunday Spotlight- Bobbi Clackson-Walker


graphite drawing 
© Bobbi Clackson-Walker

When I decided to begin the Sunday Spotlight element of my blog I wanted to highlight people I know who are visual artists, but I also wanted to consider people I know who are artists in other ways.... and some people I know are artists in more ways than one. You are about to meet such a person... Bobbi Clackson-Walker.

Bobbi is a born and raised Saskatchewanian whom I met last summer at the abstractions class at Kenderdine Campus. She is a riot and (I think) we really "clicked". She has an extremely generous spirit and during that class I felt like she really took me and my floundering fish-out-of-water-in-regards-to-abstracts self under her wing. All week long I kept hearing people say, "Have you ever heard Bobbi sing? You should hear her! Her voice is gorgeous". Unfortunately I still have not heard her stellar jazz renditions, but because I am curious, I asked Bobbi to share this part of her artistic history with us.

Expo 1986
© Bobbi Clackson-Walker

Like many who are passionate artists as adults, Bobbi says a creative spirit has always been a part of who she is- she can even recall at the young age of three carving heads out of lumps of dirt while singing at the top of her lungs. To be honest, she is such a fun person I can even visualize her doing that now! The point being that she loves to create in more ways than one. In her words, "Music and art were my everything growing up". Fortunately for her (and those of us who enjoy her work) Bobbi was raised by parents who encouraged and supported her talents. When she was sixteen she auditioned for a professional band and ended up getting the lead vocal role! She would work five nights a week for three week stints singing in lounges with adults. When her sets were done she would go back to being a sixteen year old working on her homework in the dining room off the lounge. Performing and music continued to be a mainstay as other roles in her life changed- becoming a wife and mother and also pursuing a business career.

image © Bobbi Clackson-Walker

Highlights from her career as a vocalist include an ACTRA nomination, national and regional televised performances, recording, headline performer at Expo 86, back up singing for the Righteous Brothers and being a regular performer at the Saskatchewan Jazz Festival. Not bad for a prairie girl!



 
floor cloths © Bobbi Clackson-Walker

When Bobbi came back to visual art her interest was more with the tactile and functional. She designed and constructed quilts and eventually got into hand-painting floor cloths and building and painting folding screens and room-dividers. With these skills firmly in place, Bobbi started a business called

folding screen © Bobbi Clackson-Walker

Bobbi Clackson-Walker Fine and Functional Art. This venture kept her busy with plenty of commission work as well as various art and design markets in both Saskatchewan and Alberta. It totally makes sense to me that these things interested her at one time; they tie into what I know of her more recent work which is largely based in physically constructing elements to be used in collage. After exhausting her fascination with large, functional three dimensional work Bobbi's focus is now on her two-dimensional painting.
 

 

 images © Bobbi Clackson-Walker
 acrylic on watercolour paper

I love the above pieces which are created by staining watercolour paper with acrylic washes and a spray bottle. Paper towel was laid down on the surface during the paint application to create a resist (the circular shapes) to the paint being sprayed. Clever and effective! I find there are so many interesting places for my eye to explore and I keep wondering how she created the many layers. I would love to see the stages of development.

In 2011 Bobbi completed the University of Saskatchewan Art and Design Certificate and now teaches a contemporary collage course for the program. Aside from this training Bobbi is largely a self-taught artist. Soon after I met her I was excited to hear that she was successful in her application to the CARFAC mentorship program and had secured Alicia Popoff as her mentor. Bobbi sums up the experience by saying it has been "the single most career altering event that has lead to a fuller understanding of myself as artist". Bobbi loves to learn by experiencing and experimenting and she enjoys tactile interaction with her work which, in my mind, made Alicia Poppoff (based on her work in abstraction) the most perfect match for Bobbi. These beautiful pieces (below) which have been produced during her mentorship with Alicia, indicate that Bobbi is flourishing within this new understanding.

 


 

images © Bobbi Clackson-Walker
mixed media collage

Each of the above pieces contain hand made elements that Bobbi first constructed and then collaged onto the painted canvas or panel in layers. I think that is why I am so drawn to Bobbi's work. The work is two-dimensional (AKA flat) yet there is such depth to them- I feel like I can go into the work and move around in the layers.
 
image © Bobbi Clackson-Walker

Artist Statement:
"I am a visual artist who creates works of lyrical abstraction.  I am interested in visually communicating impressions, ideas, and emotions through an improvisational multi-layered construction of two-dimensional space. I find inspiration in words and phrases, spoken, read, or recalled, and in physical patterns that when revealed find a foothold of personal meaning. I am by nature a maker, and most deeply connect to my work through the physical use of a variety of media, collage, processes of veiling and layering, and by hand rendering individual elements that I then bring into my art".

 drawing © Bobbi Clackson-Walker


Bobbi works on her art in some capacity every day, and like many of us, she finds she is her best self when she is creating. To connect with her, please follow the link to her Facebook page...

Bobbi Clackson-Walker Fine and Functional Art

5 comments:

Sandra said...

Bobbi IS an amazing artist on so many levels. Musically speaking she brought pleasure to tons of people in a and around Saskatoon for years and continues now to do so from a visual perspective. It's amazing how some artists can go from one "medium"(I don't know that I've ever heard music referred to as such) to another to express themselves. She makes the world a more beautiful place!

Nicki said...

Hi Sandra, thank you for your great comment. Bobbi does make the world a better place and I am so happy people out there know it!

suzanneberry said...

incredible array of very beautiful work, thank you for sharing bobbi with us!

Barbara Muir said...

Very cool. Thanks Nicki.

XO Barbara

Nicki said...

I'm glad you enjoyed Bobbi's work Suzanne and Barbara!