Enlightened Solitude: Scott Goudie Celebrates 40 Years Of Art

St. John's Variations XII (Cropped for Web)
The towering fjords and moonlit rivers of one our finest living landscape artists, celebrate light and nature, devoid of the corrupting hand of mankind.

The towering fjords and moonlit rivers of one our finest living landscape artists, celebrate light and nature, devoid of the corrupting hand of mankind. 

Scott Goudie is not a modern man. His towering prints are like visual old school haikus, uncomplicated evocations of elemental nature itself, unsullied by humans and their entanglements. Or their greed.

”We’re so arrogant as a species,” he says when I ask him why, with the exception of a few images, the works comprising the celebration of forty years of professional art making at Christina Parker Gallery this month are landscapes, stunning, and big -skyed, barren of humans.

He begins to speak of the environmental devastation he’s encountered while traveling in remote Labrador, barrels and barrels rusting on the shore of once pristine lakes, left full of toxic waste by long ago mining operations.

Muskrat Falls is only the latest in a long line of human imposed tragedies on the Big Land as far as Scott is concerned. And he loves the Big Land, it is evident in its frequent recurrence in his body of work; the Torngats, Northwest River, all its wild stark beauty:

“I paint my landscapes devoid of human figures because that’s what I enjoy most. It’s my quiet environmental statement.” Scott would have been right at home with Blake and Shelley in his humble revere for the natural world and its perfect beauty, which humans in their vanity seem to only degrade.

There is a stoicism to his capturing of the fjords of Labrador that communicate the scale of these ancient glacial carvings of stone. Quiet awe abounds through this collection of mineral, evergreen, water and the delicate plays of light.

The soul of a Romantic poet has never come from too much convenience or comfort. Scott’s traveled far, wide, and off the beaten path, observing the natural world and the various ways people live within it. From India to Ireland to Alabama, he’s created art and made music.

Goudie is also an accomplished guitarist who, when in the deep south in the early 70’s, studied with a contemporary of Robert Johnson’s; a man called Johnny Shines. He was at this time more into portraiture than in later years, and is proud of his ability to record images directly from life in authentic situations. It is to be noted here that Scott is a peer of the legendary artist Gerry Squires. Squires has painted Goudie:

A lover of fly fishing, his renditions of the Salmonier River carry a sense of respect, bringing to mind the answer a dedicated fly fisher once gave when asked what church he went to. “The one by the side of the river,” he said.

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