Stephen Edwards  
        Master Watercolorist   




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Stephen Edwards (°1951, Indianapolis, Indiana) has been drawing and painting the world he sees from a very young age. He would ask his father to show him how to draw a subject and he would emulate it till it reached perfection. Thus, his love of art was reinforced for the rest of his life. Though his father always wanted to be a commercial artist himself, he did not approve of his son becoming one. Stephen went to college studying biology and chemistry. It seemed that art would never again enter his life. But life has a way of presenting and righting a wrong that might have been missed.

With his mother gravely ill, Stephen was called upon to help take care of her; a situation that continued for three years till her death. During the interval that he was caring for her, he returned to art, drawing and eventually painting to help pass his time through the day. Through that study, he taught himself color theory and how to mix colors with paint. He read art books about composition and values. Starting with oils, he later switched to watercolors. Essentially, he is self-taught, though he likes to think he has learned from the masters though all those books he studied. A year after his mother’s death he entered his first art competition and won best of show as a professional artist. Art was officially again part of his life.

To be an artist, one must immerse themselves in the art world. And that he did. Joining and being accepted in various local and national groups became second nature to him. He served as president and other various board duties. He co-founded the Watercolor Society Of Indiana in 1982. He has shown in many exhibitions both local and national. He is a signature member of the Watercolor Society Of Indiana, Pennsylvania Watercolor Society and the Hoosier Salon.

His paintings are an exploration into representations of the ages and settings, as well as depictions and ideas, that can only be realized in paintings. By taking daily life as subject matter, he creates work that deals with the documentation of events and the question of how they can be presented. The work tries to express this with the help of color and values, by telling a story or creating a metaphor of a memory.

His works are characterized using everyday objects in an atmosphere of conventional mindset in which recognition plays an important role. With Plato’s allegory of the cave in mind; he investigates the dynamic contrasts of the subjects he chooses, including the manipulation of their effects and the limits of their vision based on our assumptions of what the subject means to us. Rather than presenting a factual reality, an illusion is fabricated to conjure the realms of the viewer’s imagination and the artist’s mood.

His works establish a link between the subject’s reality and that imagined by its conceiver. By exploring the concept of his subject in a nostalgic way, Stephen Edwards often creates work using creative techniques, but they are never permissive. Painting is a serious matter: during the process of creation, different rules apply than in everyday life. And even mundane and everyday subjects undergo transformation with his brushes. If they don’t exist, then they should; an opinion voiced by an art show critic viewing his work for the first time.

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