Raymond Knaub's landscape oil paintings are intended to speak to the viewer at a rare nonverbal level, a peaceful place where the visual meets the emotional -- where memories are easily evoked with a brush stroke. It is a place where our intuition tells us that the subtleties we view in nature are magical in their simplicities.
Through his use of the oil medium, Knaub reminds us that we are all a part of this magic."Harmony, light, space and reverence for the land are the adjectives I would use to describe my interest in painting. My works are based on actual landscapes, but I feel no obligation to render them exactly as an illustrator would do. My art has evolved over the years to reflect a deeper internal interpretation," the artist explains.
During high school in Nebraska, Knaub received no formal artistic training. Running and jumping hurdles occupied most of his time and provided him with an athletic scholarship to Baylor University in Waco, TX. While majoring in math and engineering, he happened to take a drawing class. Within a year he began to see the world with new eyes. He transferred to the University of Nebraska, majored in fine arts and graduated with a bachelor's degree. After graduate school at the University of Colorado in Boulder, there came a point when he looked around the art world and wondered, among all of the styles and media he had explored in school, where his own artistic direction might lead him. "I asked myself, who am I, what kinds of paintings are real for me? I am a landscape artist, and when I thought of where I was reared and where my roots are -- it's rural," he explained.
He has always considered Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth among his earliest influences and like them, he has always been attracted to traditional themes. Knaub has been featured in many one-man shows throughout the Southwest.
His work has been exhibited in many regional and national competitive shows such as the Coors National Western Exhibit Invitational in Denver, the Mountain Oyster Club Annual Show in Tucson, Watercolor USA, and the Allied Artist Annual in New York City. In June of 1996, the Museum of Nebraska Art featured Ray in a one-man show entitled "Rural Wanderings".Knaub's work has appeared in Southwest Art, Colorado Homes and Lifestyles, Western Art Digest, Art Talk, Art of the West, and Who's Who in American Art.
His work was recently featured at the United States Embassy in Moscow. "I view my paintings more and more as a visual poem that hopefully creates a spirit of place. That view, a romantic one, is as valid as any art movement today. We, as a society, have to regain or discover the beauty and sacredness of the earth. I suppose, in a nut shell, that is the significance of my life's work!"
Source: Kent Whipple, Art Professional