Vancouver-based artist Amy Stewart has been drawn to the interconnections of art, play and nature since her childhood in 108-Mile House, British Columbia, where she spent most of her time outdoors. That first northern home continues to dominate much of Amy’s current artistic world. The memories of childhood and nature shape her adult imagination, and they are reflected in her paintings’ rich textures and vibrant tones. Her pieces are often inspired by the feelings that come both from the natural world and from engaging fully in her community and with her loved ones. “I paint how I feel and who I am,” Stewart explains. And that sense of humanity—the private experiences of suffering and celebration—is evoked by her canvases’ unique explorations of colour, which range from exuberant bursts of brightness to contemplative reflections on darkness.
A constant passion, painting became more central to Amy’s life during her years of working with at-risk youth. She began producing her own art when her professional experiences required her to carve out a space in her life for self-care.
Amy takes inspiration from her artist grandmother, who would become immersed in a work of art the moment she held a paintbrush in her hand. Encouraged by this early example to follow her passions, Amy became an observer of her environment, focusing on little things that bring unexpected awe—a slight bend in a building, a line of mountains casting shadows across water, a wayward tree. By bringing these glimpses of delight into her work, Amy captures those small, daily experiences that shift the world around her into a place of joy. In this way, Amy expresses herself through painting, creating art as a mode of personal discovery.
Amy paints from her studio on Granville Island as well as at her Eastside, Parker Street studio. Her art hangs in galleries and private homes around the world, and has been featured in several films, television series, and architecture and design magazines.