Enriching the Arts

Featured Artist: Roberta Murray, ASA


Short Grass Sunrise - 11x14" - Oil on panel

Roberta Murray, Short Grass Sunrise


Roberta Murray was born in Calgary, but now lives in the countryside southwest of Rocky Mountain House. She is a 5th generation Albertan, who spent much of her childhood with relatives in the ranching areas of southwestern Alberta listening to tales of her ancestors and their life from the land. It is no surprise that the land forms an important part of her art practice today. Art was a big part of Roberta’s life since she was able to hold a pencil. It was rare to see her without a sketchbook or camera nearby. That dual love of photography and painting continued throughout Roberta’s life. She took more formal training in photography and the fibre arts, but continues a self-directed study in painting. The ability to express herself through paint has led Roberta on a lifelong learning experience that continually challenges her.

Working mostly in oils, Roberta strives to produce evocative paintings that allow the viewer to create their own stories or interpretations. Her main focus is on impressionist landscapes with a special emphasis on skies, which is a nod to both her roots in Alberta and the many years she has spent as a volunteer weather watcher for Environment Canada. Her love of the local flora and fauna often make appearances in her work as well.

Ides Of March - 8x10" - Oil on canvas

Roberta Murrary, Ides Of March

Roberta is a juried member of the Alberta Society of Artists, Federation Of Canadian Artists and the Oil Painters of America. Her photographic works have won many awards internationally and both her photography and paintings hang in private and public collections around the world.

Meadow At Dusk - 16x20" - Oil on hardboard

Roberta Murray, Meadow At Dusk

Q & A with the ASA

ASA: Can you tell us about your influences?

Roberta: I am influenced first and foremost by the land and its importance in sustaining life both physically and spiritual. Beyond that my inspiration lies with painters of the past, notably the Soviet, Dutch, and French Impressionists, and my great, great uncle Frederick G. Cross who was one of the founding members of the Alberta Society of Artists. He was noted for painting big sky landscapes – a feature we share.

ASA: Which body of work would you consider most successful to date?

Roberta: As the definition of success varies from person to person, so to would my answer. Although my work in photography has earned me more acclaim and commercial success, I consider my landscape paintings the most successful work to date due to the struggles I’ve had in being able to communicate my thoughts and feelings effectively using the landscape as a metaphor. Though there may be many failed attempts there is nothing quite like the personal satisfaction gained when the canvas and vision are aligned, or the pure joy of being outside trying to interpret the atmosphere and mood of the landscape.


ASA and TREX Address

Crossroads Art Centre
#302 - 1235 26th Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 1R7
ASA Phone: (403) 265-0012
TREX Phone: (403) 262-4669

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