January 28 th 2011

Watercolor, gouache, and paper on wood
18 x 9 x 9 inches

I created the piece entitled "Overcomer" in 2006 after reading texts by Watchman Nee. An overcomer is someone who conforms to God's plans and is victorious through dependence upon Him.

I find a quiet beauty in the desolation of clear-cut forests. An isolated tree flourishing in the midst of destruction resonates hope. I build three-dimensional wooden structures that are wall dependent. The structures help drive the content. This one revealed the concept of building something new out of change. All images are watercolor and gouache on paper, collaged onto the wooden shapes.

Working from reference photos, I cut and re-arranged the watercolors from one block to another, slicing trunks and roots off, showing branches with no source. Some trees differ in stages of development. The central and largest block details a fully formed tree, a new creation that bears fruit of life.

Topics: Arts
Russ Havard
Russ Havard

Born in Lufkin, Texas in 1971, Russ Havard has been notably influenced by the landscape and culture of deep East Texas. Working in traditional and experimental methods, Russ uses landscape as both a centre and as a point of departure. Major personal and artistic changes occurred however, when Russ fell ill with an auto-immune disease in 1994. He worked and completed graduate studies at Stephen F. Austin State University in Texas until a major relapse in 1997. This forced him to change his working methods and materials from large mixed media works to small-scale watercolors. The circumstance gave a new meaning of growth through volatility, resulting in more content-driven work, concerning spiritual issues.


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