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Christmas in Victoria, Canada
Nanaimo Harbour City
Whistler BC
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Rob Elphinstone Paintings
Biography and Statement Rob Elphinstone grew up in Calgary, Canada, and spent his youth travelling about the world. He went to Afghanistan during the Soviet occupation of the country acting as a photographer with "Doctors without Borders" (MSF). For months he wandered through the Hindu Kush Mountains with the mujahedin experiencing first hand what it feels like to be under attack in a war. His limited edition photographic images are an excellent record of the Afghan culture and medical work of Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in Afghanistan. He worked in space physics for many years, researching the Aurora Borealis (the Northern Lights) both from the ground and from satellites in space. He has authored more than 50 publications on the northern lights including review articles and has lectured extensively throughout the world. The beauty of the northern lights allowed some artistic interpretation to overlap into his scientific work. Rob lives with his wife and two children in Nanaimo on Canada's west coast where they cherish the beautiful climate and scenery that inspire his paintings. He divides his time between being a stay-at-home dad and an artist. His award winning art can be found in galleries and collections around the world including Belgium, Italy, Australia, United States and across Canada. Actualism Art Rob Elphinstone specializes in capturing the beauty of the Canadian west coast through his textured wild flowing landscapes. His art reflects the belief that our senses reveal only a shadow of what we truly experience. Rob believes that the beauty of a place is hardly ever replicated in a photo or a video. Our senses take in a fraction of what we perceive about the world. This tiny fraction is the shadow of what is really there. Good art should not have to be about what the inner psyche experiences or displaying perfectly what is optically there but should be about the unseen reality that everyone feels. Every one of his art pieces reflects the premise that creative art stems from what is truly evident in nature rather than the shadow that can be photographed. The term "Actualism art" is used to distinguish this art form from the emotionally based "expressionism" trend. Reality is more than just the sum our emotional impressions and the sense detection of an external scene. The realism art discipline attempts to capture the latter and expressionism the former. Rob Elphinstone's version of Actualist art allows that the observer can interpret the "actual" and create works that capture the essence of the observed in a fundamental way. The process of laying down textured brushstrokes helps capture the elusive nature so evident when we look outside. The textured brushstrokes give the paintings a unique look. This texture is laid down as a pastel underpainting which unifies my work and allows vibrant colour to be applied on top. This technique yields a complexity that mimics nature and that permeates every portion of the pieces he creates. From a distance, the painting comes together through form as a coherent whole, but each portion catches the eye in a manner that draws the viewer into it.“… I see the Vincent influence, but your art evokes the brushwork of Soutine and I see a distinct passionate style influenced by nature… This man's art is going to find a huge public appreciation in the future.” – W. Matthews, a Vancouver collector
Self Taught.
Group Exhibitions:
”Urban Eyes Art Exhibition”, Nanaimo Art Gallery, 150 Commercial Street, 2nd Floor Art Space, 29 Commercial Street, Nanaimo, BC. April 20-22, 2006.

”Nanaimo Art Gallery Annual Floral Art Exhibit, Nanaimo Art Gallery, 150 Commercial Street, Nanaimo, BC, April 1-15, 2006.

2005/2006 International Encyclopedia of Modern and Contemporary Art, (Dizionario Enciclopedico Internazionale d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea) 2005/2006 - Casa Editrice Alba - Ferrara (Italy), pg 508 entry for Rob Elphinstone

OPENING MAY 6, 12PM - 6PM, MAY 3 - 13, 2006, OPENING MAY 6, 12PM - 6PM

Landscapes and Timescapes, March 18- April 1, ACA Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Group Show. Michael Nedkov, Beverley Hawksley, Emily Rosamond, Rob Elphinstone, Iwona Dufaj, Julie Glick, Lisa Lipsett, Eva Piotrowska-Lewarne, Eveline Gallant Fournier, Emily Rosamond, Bill Bouchard, Jana Skarecky, Sue Ericsson, Janine Kinch, Patricia Pidoux, George Sanders and Jill Segal.
Participating Covent Garden artists include Mary-Lou Ashton, Linda Barber, Christine Chown, Ron Hall, Sue Hawley, Joan Mackay, Tess Moffat and Susan Statham.

"2006 Centennial Commemoration of the S.S. Valencia Tragedy Calendar" in support of the Bamfield Arts Community.

The Ambassadors Prize Art Exhibition "In the Footsteps of Jules Verne", Decourtenay Galleries 8 Grand Rue B-6200 Chatelet (Belgium),
January 1-31, 2006.
3rd Official Arts Expo of Caraguatuba, San Paolo, Brazil, Jan. 8- Feb 7, 2006.

International Invitational Art Exhibition, Ferrara/Italy
· 29 october - 06 november 2005
· Estense Castle - Imbarcadero Rooms

ARTISTS: Carla Abbondi , Michal Ashkenasi (Israele), Laura Bargilli, Aldo Basili, Edgardo Battiston, Heinz Baumann (Svizzera), Sauro Benassi, Patrizia Berardo, Daniela Birindelli, Mirella Bisson, Raffaele Boccia, Arturo Busi, Bridget Busutil (U.S.A.), Andrea Canu, Lucia Cecchi, Mykhailo Demtsiu (Ucraina), Adele D’Ettorre, Rob Elphinstone (Canada), Carlo Alberto Fiorini, Beatrix Frederiks (Olanda), Lucio Garribba, Rosa Gattuso, Anna Ghisleni, Salvatore Girgenti, Daniela Hartl-Heisan (Austria), Roland Heim (Austria), Ilunia (Israele), Bettina Joy (Austria), Gitta Landgraf (Austria), Carla Leonelli, Enzo Masci, Giampietro Mattolin, Fran Mc Cann (Irlanda), Luigi Meregalli, Yvette Miller (Stati Uniti), Franco Mineo, Sander Kletter, (Olanda), Michele Karbassioun (Austria), Paul Thomas Kuyt (Olanda), Simona Occhiuzzi, Heike Oddermatt (Olanda), Martin Oeggerli (Svizzera), Guido Paliaga, Milagros Palmieri (Stati Uniti), Andrea Piacini, Luca Pugliese, Adria Santunione, Serhiy Savchenko (Ucraina), Ivo Stazio, Francesca Suardi, Vera Tataro (Cecoslovacchia), Massimo Turlinelli, Walter Ucari, Robert van Beurden (Olanda), Roelof van der Schaaf (Olanda), Andrea Vedovato, Amy Veldman-Wilson (Stati Uniti), Patrick Walshe, Peter Witt (Danimarca), Martin Würfl (Svizzera), Doron Yefet (Svizzera), Mona Youssef (Canada), Gineke Zikken (Olanda), Flavia Zorzini.

"Divine Celebrations of Spirit", ACA Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Group Show.
November 23-December 17, 2005
Erika Bampfer Deery, Esther Friede, Iwona Dufaj, Lisa Lipsett, Eveline Gallant Fournier, Emily Rosamond, Ina & Jack Gilbert, Rob Elphinstone, Bill Bouchard, Jana Skarecky, Mary Ann O’Connor, Michelle Demeulenaere, Samantha Terry, Danielle Pignataro and daguerreotype photographs from1800’s Italy from private collection of Donald MacDonald.

301 Main Street Wellington, Ontario
October 29-November 13, 2005
Mark Armstrong, Jy Chiperzak, Aidan Haley, Ron Hall, Dean Munroe, Don Liardi , Bill Bouchard, Pierre Chenier, Miro Corsic , Rob Elphinstone, Telford Fenton , Garry Potter, Harry VanDyk, Carl White

Photographic Exhibition in conjunction with Carol Mann
ACA Gallery 183 Queen St. East, Toronto
· Ex-curator of photography for the Modern Art Museum of Paris
· Author of Modigliani (World of Art Ser. ) New York, NY, U.S.A.: Oxford University Press, Incorporated, 1980
· September 7th to September 30th 2005

Open House at Studio 737
A gallery of major Canadian artists
Hwy. #7, 1 km East of Hwy. #37, North of Tweed, Ontario

· October 1st & 2nd & 8th 9th 10th, 2005
Feature Artist, Oakleaf Gallery, Chemainus, BC, October 1- 31, 2005.
Artist's Statement:
The Canadian west coast, with its unique climate and wild character, lends itself to artists seeking to express the forces of nature in their artwork. Trees and rocks have been scoured by wind and water in ways that provide a metaphor for the way in which people have been shaped by equivalent influences. The paths people take in their lives reflect their ability to understand and relate to patterns in their environment. Art should reflect these designs and it is with this metaphorical knowledge that I approach my artwork. My travels to different countries and, in particular, Afghanistan has given me perspective on what various cultures choose to value in life. The interrelationship between land, sea and sky along the West Coast of BC involves patterns which when exaggerated allow for striking artistic images of these metaphors. These are accomplished by the careful design of my artwork before I start painting. My art reflects the belief that our senses reveal only a shadow of what we truly experience. Rather than painting to convey an emotional state like most expressionist painters, I instead attempt to paint the portion of nature a photograph cannot capture. The painting of representational pieces led me to realize that the true joy in producing a painting comes not from the accurate copying of an object but rather from the letting go and producing what is actually there. Rather than imposing my emotional state on nature I prefer the art of "actualism" whereby the actual nature of a scene is depicted. Landscapes provide a means of linking our real physical world to our senses. While generally out of favour in the art community, this environment around us is the single most important input to our senses everyday. Understanding how this “scenery” affects us should be an essential part of the artist’s striving. "To my mind there must be, at the bottom of it all,not an equation, but an utterly simple idea.And to me that idea, when we finally discover it,will be so compelling, so inevitable, that we will say to one another,"Oh, how beautiful!How could it have been otherwise?""- John Archibald WheelerSpacetime Physics,1990 “Day and Night, the Sea keeps on churning the foam. You behold the foam but not the Sea—How strange.How should the foam like shape move without waves? How can dust rise to the zenith without wind? … Before the painter and brush, the picture is helpless and shackled like a child in the womb. The picture derives its movement only from the painter’s brush, the compass’ foot revolves around the point.”“Colourlessness is the root of colours, picturelessness the root of pictures, wordlessness the root of words and the mine the root of coins- so behold!Thousands of colours have come from the vat, which transcends blue and white.Form comes into existence from the formless, just as smoke is born from fire.”“This world is maintained by imagination. You call it “reality”, since it can be seen and perceived, and those meanings of which the world is an offshoot you call “imagination”. The true situation is the reverse. The imagination is this world itself, for that meaning brings into existence a hundred worlds like this, and they rot and disintegrate and become naught. Then it produces a new world and better…”Rumi translated by W. C. Chittick (The Sufi Path of Love, State University of New York Press, Albany, 1983).
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