Peggy Arnett

Peggy Arnett


Artist Statement

For me art is not a product but participation in an evolving practice along the continuum of history and culture. From hobbyists and professionals to those who appreciate and discuss art and whether that art is about aesthetic experience or expresses emotions, concepts or ideas it is a means of sharing the range of human experiences.

I view my work as essentially abstract. Though drawing on subjects directly from nature it is never my intent to produce a replica of what I see but rather respond to it in a variety of ways. My focus is on the light and movement (energy) and how this affects the the relationships within a work.

For years I have done small pen and ink drawings of birds. This has produced a fascination with how a few marks can shift the feeling. A subtile movement can move a blue heron from an elegant to a clownish pose. A simple shift in the gesture as a change in the tilt of its head can change a chickadee from timid to bold. In larger paintings a mark or small colour area can alter the dynamics or feeling of an entire work.

Creating a work is a constant source of learning. I need to understand how wings fold to draw a bird on a branch. What is the relationship between the weight of the bird and the branch? Contemplation becomes part of the process. Are there metaphorical possibilities in process or subject matter? I am intrigued by puzzles. Why in one painting is the the eye drawn to directed movement of gray marks in one area rather than a patch of bright yellow in another?

The words “ moving from astonishment to astonishment” found in the “Valley of Wonderment” describing the spiritual journey of the soul ( “Seven Valleys” by Baha’u’llah ) resonate as the pathway of my inspiration. The more I painting the more I become aware of what is around me colours and patterns intensify-curiosity and wonder increase.

I hope that my paintings offer the viewer a moment for contemplation and a reminder to take a moment to enjoy the light coming through the leaves or the reflection patterns in the water!

Peggy Arnett

1. Blue Heron “ The Pause”

Oil on canvas


2.  Blue Heron “Attitude “

Coloured pencil on paper


3. Juvenile Eagle “Watching”

Oil on linen


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