Artist Statement by Steve Swayne
Steve Swayne, acrylic paintings and stained glass
Steve credits his wife for launching his career as an artist ten years ago. The couple shared an appreciation for the arts and Steve had commented many times of his own interest in the stained glass medium. So to celebrate their first Valentine’s Day, Beth helped Steve get started by giving him the gift of lessons in a stained glass course.
The course marked the beginning of an artistic journey that is one of Steve’s great joys in life. He spends his days and his skills as a chef working in the research labs with Whirlpool Corporation – but spends much of his free time in his home studio creating stained glass works and most recently, paintings.
Born in Idaho in 1963, Steve grew up in a family of artists. His grandmother was a classically trained oil painter, and his grandfather a folk artist. Steve spent summers with his grandparents and learned different artistic techniques through both observation and practice.
Steve moved on from Idaho to live in diverse locations including Buffalo, Seattle and Boca Raton, and settled in Chattanooga in 1997. He enjoys exploring the tradition of folk art in the South and his pieces reflect that spirit. Steve’s acrylic paintings depict religious and nature themes, as well as his love for a family that includes three dogs.
Steve signs his paintings “S. Evets” in recognition of the dyslexia he was diagnosed with as a young man, a condition which caused him to frequently sign his name in that manner. His dyslexia has influenced his work by motivating him to show that artistic expression is possible in spite of such challenges.
Steve often works on multiple paintings and glass works at one time and explores the incorporation of different textures and three-dimensional views into his works.