James Ratliff Gallery and Greg Heil

James Ratliff Gallery and Greg Heil Invite Us North by Southwest with New Paintings

It’s with  joyful exuberance that James Ratliff Gallery invites our friends and Sedona visitors to enjoy the most current oil/canvas paintings of young artist Greg Heil who’s been with James Ratliff Gallery his entire gallery careerof 10 years.  Although being a painter has always been his passion, and the fact that he’s been painting for most of his life, Greg’s only been part of our gallery for 10 years, and has become our most consistent selling artist.

Ten years ago 2 young men visited  James Ratliff Gallery to see if their work   would fit  the gallery concept and level of artistry.  After thoughtful  consideration, Ratliffs realized that Greg  Heil was  serious about a painting career, had  developed his talent  to a high level and had the potential of being a   first class landscape painter with a unique way of expressing what he saw.   Please  join James Ratliff Gallery on Friday, October 6, from 5 – 8 PM to enjoy the latest Heil oil/canvas paintings in a show called North by Southwest.  Heil will present a short talk at 6…..Hillside Sedona.

Heil tells us that “Due to an almost entirely   ‘i nside the house’ upbringing that I had early in his life, I developed a powerful sense of fantasy and imagination so even today unreachable places are still explored by my imaginatioin.”

Heil continues, “I paint incredibly fast – want to achieve a spontaneity that contradicts the careful drawing plan underneath the paint.  There is a goal here….a painting that is dashed off from start to finish with no adjustments of changes.   It’s a way of keeping the paintings honest and closest to its original inspiring qualities.   In striving to achieve this goal, the paintings themselves show looseness that denies overworking.”

According to Heil,  “Paintings is a magical thing.  It can transpose reality or fantasy into the medium of paint.  In a world where images and media are disposable, paintings are valued partly because they provide a permanent expression of our time.  Throughout history artists such as Thomas Moran, whose beautiful scenes of the Grand Canyon and other verbally indescribably natural wonders of America, filled the hearts and minds of East Coast residents and helped kick start the Western expansion. 

Similarly  Heil feels an obligatioin to record some of the less well known beauty spots of Arizona, as well as those of less visited locations in famous places such as the Grand Canyon, Painted Desert, Canyon de Chelly and many others.

James, Patricia, Amy and Susan cordially invite you to meet or renew your acquaintance with Greg Heil at the opening reception on Friday, Oct. 6, from 5 – 8 P.M. at James Ratliff Gallery on the lower level of Hillside Sedona.  Mr. Heill will present a short talk about the new work at 6 P.M.  We look forward to seeing Due to an almost entirely "inside the house" upbringing that Greg had early in life, he developed a powerful sense of fantasy and imagination. Although today Greg finds himself in nature almost everyday, the places that are still unreachable are still explored by imagination. Greg can look at a summer scene and visualize it as fall. Greg will never allow the limits of his physical self impair his ability to see anywhere in the world. When the opportunity arises to visit these amazing places he has only imagined, sometimes, well maybe quite often, his imagination proved a superior experience to the real thing.   

Painting Process:

Greg works incredibly fast as a start - wanting to achieve a spontaneity that contradicts the careful drawing plan underneath the paint. There is a goal here, one that few artists ever achieve, and that's a "one off" - a painting that is dashed off from start to finish with no later adjustments or changes. It's a way of keeping the painting honest and closest to its original feeling of inspiration. While Greg strives to achieve this goal, the paintings themselves show a looseness that denies overworking.

Importance of Art:

Greg sees art as vitally important in a day and age where almost everything is designed to be disposable.  Art just simply makes life worth living. We all need art to ground us as humans and to experience a physical expression. Art is communication that needs no electrical connections to express itself, no user manual to get it to "work."