Bryan Nash Gill
Artist, husband, father, friend.
(1961 - 2013)
What is the soul of a tree? The question is subjective, the answer in the eye of the beholder. From the tree’s perspective, it might be the sum of the seasons of its life. The droughts suffered, the sunshine savored. But the tree cannot bear witness to its own greatness. It cannot see its own deep roots, or the influence of its own spreading branches. It is up to the observer to give meaning to the tree’s existence.
Like a tree, Bryan Nash Gill was an artist defined by the sum of his seasons. From his upbringing, through his efforts to define himself as an artist, to his life as a husband, father, friend, he could not bear witness to his own greatness. He could not see how deep his roots went, or comprehend his own spreading influence. It is up to us, the observers, to find meaning in Bryan’s life, through his art, and through our shared experiences with him.
"Art is (or should be) an authentic experience, which brings you closer to understanding yourself in relation to your surroundings." - Bryan
Bryan’s art captured the very essence of a tree; the uniqueness it brought into the world. His prints reveal the happy springs, the hard winters, the constancy of change. And through his art, we can start to give meaning to Bryan’s experiences. His art can help us begin to capture his essence and define the uniqueness he brought into this world.
Imagine a young boy standing alone in the woods. What are trees to a boy? Opportunities. A chance for fun, exploration, excitement. Bryan grew up in the woods, and the trees left their mark on him - a relief print on his soul that would later manifest itself in his art. Growing up in the woods requires a boy to be resourceful, inquisitive, resilient. These qualities would guide Bryan’s process, as the creation of his art became more like a walk in the woods for him: the journey was more important than the destination. He lived in the creative moment, controlling his medium, molding, shaping it as he saw fit that instant, letting his experiences guide him organically. He never worried about where the road led him, but was forever excited about the process of discovery, and where he was right then.
"Strict concentration on the making, the process, is more important than the result." - Bryan
Bryan was more beautiful and complex on the inside than what was visible on the outside, and his art is a window into the seasons of his life. To comprehend Bryan’s art is to get inside of him, look, and see the very soul of a man. But to know him, was to live, love, laugh, and revel in the journey.
"I found that things were as or more beautiful and complex inside than what was visible from the outside...
You’ll never know what you’re missing if you don’t find some way to get inside and look." - Bryan