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Phil Wagner

phil_wagner4

Phil Wagner
Oil paintings

99 North 400 East

Phil at Gallery Moab

Phil Wagner says:

“Art has everything to do with “courage” and not much to do with “talent”. And, like the postman, an artist rain or shine, “shows up”.  Good art is a conversion experience. Like love, laughter, poetry and music, the art-experience is about relationship, direct and immediate. Yes!  Art and the art-process demonstrate a way of ‘seeing the real world anew’ – a world which is not a fear-whipped place inhabited by boogey-men, but one filled with wonder and appreciation, a world which ‘welcomes’ you.  Amen.” 

Meanwhile, a long time ago, Phil Wagner did go to graduate school and law school.  He was in the Peace Corps, made documentary films and built many houses.  Phil also wrote and taught poetry, fell madly in love, laughed heartily, made and taught music.  Like everybody else he had his ups and downs, but continuously dabbled with watercolors, until 1994, when he progressively took up oil painting as a full time occupation.  He loves it --- and for good reason!”

Phil’s Bio 170401: (long version): “My early childhood hero was Cyrano de Bergerac: artist, warrior, and total idealist. 100% I identified with Cyrano, a guy like me, who was constantly at war with “the mundane”, keeping banal people at bay, insisting on the “adventure of being alive”. Cyrano became “me”! And as Cyrano, “I became my own liberator”, and voila! It’s that Cyrano-sense of mastery, adventure and application, which is the essence of the art experience! Because Art, like a kiss, is a mutual, direct, transforming experience, it’s treasured and rightly considered extremely valuable. My Cyrano taught me “appreciation”, how love and poetry are linked, how laughter and courage work together, how, as an artist, I could change my world and learn what it is to be more human. I learned to discern when something was “true” or "not true"! I learned that Art has everything to do with “courage” and not much to do with “talent”. I learned that certain brave experiences pop the banal bubble in which we sometimes live. These converting experiences are direct and immediate. They are the good things: love, laughter, poetry, music, and all good art. Yes! Art and the art-process, how they demonstrate a way of “seeing the real world anew” – a world which is not a fear-laden place inhabited by boogey-men, but one filled with wonder and appreciation, a world which “welcomes” you. Amen. Meanwhile, a long time ago, I did go to graduate school and law school. I was in the Peace Corps, made documentary films and built many houses. I also wrote and taught poetry, fell madly in love, laughed heartily, made and taught music. I had my ups and downs, but all the while dabbled with watercolors, until 1994, when I gradually took up oil painting as a full time occupation. I love it --- and for good reason!”

-Phil Wagner