Tom Uttech’s beautifully clear photograph “Onimik Sagaigan” was taken over twenty years ago, but the artist assures us that the view is just as pristine today. The scene is located in the Quetico Provincial Park in Ontario, Canada, a protected wildlife reserve and Tom Uttech’s “spiritual home” and source of inspiration for his paintings. Photography is a reference for Tom’s oil paintings, but he never reproduces scenes in a completely realistic manner. When you view his paintings, you will find mystical elements worked into a detailed, natural setting. Certain components often appear such as rocks shaped like animals, fallen branches among shadows that seem to spell messages out in code, and animals, that at first glance are not quite visible. The photographs often contain some of these aspects, and is why it is relevant to see the photographs of the places that move him.
As the Tom says, “Since these pictures are about nature and our role in it, the knowledge gained might grow into love of nature, and thus into concern for its well being. This concern could lead to action to protect nature and, therefore, ourselves. The best response to my paintings would be for you to…go straight to the wildest piece of land you can find and sit down to let it wash over you and tell you secrets.”
While his photos are available in various sizes, this particular version’s image is 11×11 inches and enclosed within a wonderfully decorated frame crafted by the artist. It was made especially for our recent exhibition of Uttech’s work “Boreal Conversations.” To see more examples of Tom Uttech’s photographs, please click here. To see the paintings of Tom Uttech, please click here.