Artist Sam Ashford
I studied drawing, painting and photography in The School of Design and graduated in architecture from North Carolina State University where the works of Modernist architects and artists were emphasized. In addition to modern and post-modern, my interest included the masters and the impressionists.
I learned to fly in the Southwest as an Air Force Cadet at Marana Air Base near Tucson, Arizona. Flying over the broad expanses of Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado, it was the canyons and glimpses of cliff dwellings and ancient settlements that intrigued me and remain with me. After earning my wings, I was an Air Force pilot in London, England. While in London, I was selected by the Seventh Air Division of SAC to paint a portrait of air ace Col. David Carl Schilling to be presented at the renaming of Schilling Air Force Base in Salinas, Kansas. Upon returning to the states, I became an architect and I continued to paint. A couple of my early works were selected in juried statewide competitions and exhibited at the North Carolina Museum of art,’62 and the Mint Museum of Art in Charlotte in ‘63. For several years I camped in the Southwest where I painted many of the oil paintings presently on view in Ashford Gallery.
My contemporary works as a fine arts painter range from medium to large format abstracts and figurative abstracts, ”abstract impressionism,” I call these works. Painting primarily in oils, I use high grade oils and materials for paintings, and archival inks, fine art papers and canvas for photos and fine art reproductions.
Early works include paintings created during many travels throughout the Southwest, especially to canyons and cliff dwellings. Photographs include images from London, France, Mexico City and the United States.
Legends, myths, sayings, writings, historical content, contemporary present and past events are elements contributing to visions in my work.
Continuously exploring new directions in color, light, texture, arrangement and perspective, I strive to create meaningful form to be explored and appreciated.