Today we’d like to introduce you to Devon Walz.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I was always very creative and imaginative as a child. As a teen and through community college my creative outlets consisted of dancing and writing. I did some drawing and doodling growing up, but I never thought much of it.
As an undergrad I jumped around between studying in Psychology, pre-med and eventually, landed on Philosophy. Based on the environment I grew up in (both of my parents are real estate agents), I didn’t understand or realize that a more creative career path was an option. I think, at the time, Philosophy felt like the closest thing to allowing me to explore life the way I wanted to. It was an effort to pursue something that felt true to me, but I really had no idea yet what that was.
After transferring to UC Berkeley I found myself needing to express my experiences more than I wanted to analyze them. And I became very disconnected from the dry academic environment I found myself in.
With that craving to create, I went in search of a way to process some personal challenges I was experiencing at the time. I started with crayons and a sketchbook and, after a few years of exploring different styles and mediums, I finally found my home: abstract art, acrylic paint and large canvases.
It took me some time to embrace art as a career path, but after trying so many avenues that didn’t work out and travelling abroad for long periods of time to gain perspective, it became clear that art actually was the only “practical” path for me to go down.
Since then, it’s been a beautiful unfolding of directing my own art education and pursuing my love for visual art full time.
Please tell us about your art.
I create abstract works of art and I typically work in acrylic paint and other mixed media. My pieces are all different sizes, but my favorite (albeit the most challenging) is working on large canvas.
There’s a heavy emphasis on movement, color and fundamental shapes and lines. My goal is to capture a sense of aliveness in my work.
All of my pieces are unplanned and my work is very process driven. For me, making art is a form of channeling. What’s most important to me in the process is allowing my intuition to take over and letting each piece be what it wants to be, rather than what I want it to be. To tune in rather than dictate. In this way, I see my work as investigation and discovery.
My work is about tuning into the world around me, whether it’s a relationship dynamic, emotional state or element of nature, and capturing that energy visually. I’ve always felt very in tune with the energetic current that runs beneath the surface of everyday life and I get so much joy out of exploring and expressing that energy through paint.
My aim is for my work to inspire people to connect back to the magic and beauty of life. I think a lot of us are disconnected and lacking a sense of aliveness, and my hope is that my work evokes a sense of wonder and deep feeling within people. That they recognize their own personal magic reflected back to them and it leaves them feeling inspired.
Given everything that is going on in the world today, do you think the role of artists has changed? How do local, national or international events and issues affect your art?
I think the role of the artist has always been to invite people to go deeper and to look beyond the veil. Whether that’s by raising questions, telling an important story or evoking a feeling, the artist’s job is to be a voice for meaning and truth. To bring things of importance to the surface. I don’t believe that role has changed. In fact, I think now, maybe more than ever, we need artists to be doing this.
In my own work, the issues happening in the world today remind me how important it is to invite people to connect at a deeper level. I think much of the discord happening around the world can be rooted back to a fundamental issue of disconnection: to ourselves, to others and to why we’re really here. This gives me fuel to continue to ask my own questions, sink in deeper to the world around me and strengthen my own sense of connection so that I can offer that back to others through my art.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
Locally, I’m participating in a juried group show at Brea Gallery called, “Made in California,” which opens on April 21st.
Most all of my work can be viewed online at www.devonwalz.com, as well as on Instagram @devonwalzart if you want to get the behind the scenes of my studio practice.
The best way to support my work is to purchase a piece for yourself. I sell most of my work online at www.devonwalz.com/shop. I offer originals in all different sizes so that my work is accessible to anyone who feels connected to it and wants to own a piece themselves.
- Website: www.devonwalz.com
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @devonwalzart
- Facebook: www.facebook.com/devonwalzart
Brie Lakin (credit for the two beach photos)