”What works for me in art and life is appreciation. Holding onto the things I love, and letting go of the things that don’t enhance my life have always provided a life truly worth living.”
Hello, my name is Christian Ives. I was born and raised in the mountainous town of Missoula, Montana (aka Big Sky Country), where I was fortunate to be surrounded by mountains, rivers, and the most amazing skies. This landscape has forever fostered a love of colors, textures, and the sublime in my life and in my art.
As a family, we were always traveling to various national parks and cities across the US and Canada. To this day I absolutely love traveling and despise too much of a routine. Maybe that’s why my paintings never stay the same.
It was in college that I fell in love with oil painting. I studied painting and drawing under Harold Schlotzhauer and Robert Smith at MSU Bozeman, where I received my MFA’s in Studio Art and Art Education in 2007.
During this time in college, I lived abroad in Cortiano, Italy and Wrecsam, Wales to study art history, drawing, painting, and complete my student teaching. It was this experience that influenced my art to became less focused on perfect balances, and focus more on the idea of the imperfect and aging qualities of life.
It hasn’t always been easy pursuing a life filled with passions. I took up many jobs that would allow me time to create, including being a paraprofessional, working a Fortune 500 position, being a cook, and teaching to help make ends meet. Yet, thanks to this way of living, I have continued painting the things that bring me fulfillment, and have even found the girl of my dreams, which I have been with now for over 3 years.
My work can be found in private collections in Montana, Oregon, Washington, New Mexico, Georgia, New York, France and India. I have been featured in Convergence Gallery, The Dana Gallery, Coos Art Museum, and in 2016 was awarded a grant for the Traffic Signal Box Project in Missoula, Montana.
Currently I am happily living in Eugene, Oregon where I teach and create art with my fiancé and turtle, Michael.
About My Art
The way each of us remembers a particular moment in life has always fascinated me. Our minds can only focus on so many details at a time, which makes how we view any given moment truly unique to each viewer. My paintings represent how I perceive reality while I am living in these moments. Some details are blurred out, while others are hyper-exaggerated.
The way I paint is the most natural and enjoyable way for me to create using this model. Expressive colors and lines create multiple images on one canvas with knives, brushes, and squeegees until my perception of the moment has fully been reached.
My paintings are always inspired from the moments in my life worth remembering; especially with loved ones, wildlife, and places I travel. It has become my way of appreciating these moments in life and doing everything possible to live a fully aware life. Using oil paint on canvas and wood, each painting always influences the next. I enjoy my painting process as each color and subject matter control the flow of where the painting will go. When finished I take pleasure in seeing what other people find in my art as no one ever sees the same thing.