Raymond Arnatt, ARCA, once said, “The process of art making becomes an adventure, a journey. It is a mixture of having priorities, having an intention…a direction [and] sensibilities and then out of all that fantastic mixture…to generate a work of art. I have often said what artists do is self-portraiture….not direct representations [but] reflections of your psyche, personality, history, biology, whatever feeds you.”
Arnatt was born in Nuneham Courtenay, England in 1934. He studied art at Oxford School of Technology and sculpture at the Royal College of Art. Graduating with First Class Honours, Arnatt was awarded the Silver Medal for Sculpture, and was named an Associate of the Royal College of Art (ARCA). In 1962, Arnatt set up two studios and a metal casting facility in Berkshire to facilitate control of large bronze work, and research the process of direct metal casting. He was a senior lecturer at Chelsea School of Art in London (1965-81), and a visiting lecturer at the University of British Columbia and Emily Carr College of Art, before becoming a professor at University of Calgary (1981). Arnatt was a passionate, dedicated instructor and researcher, inspired in his own artistic practice by philosophy, quantum physics, and his own children’s artwork. He continued teaching and creating art until his death in 2004.
Arnatt received commissions from Calgary, Hong Kong, and England, and exhibited in western Canada, England and Greece. In Calgary, his sculpture Duet was commissioned for the Centre of Performing Arts in 1985; Vigil and Sentinel is permanently exhibited outside Calgary City Hall. Legato, a 300 x 20 ft sculpture in painted cast concrete was commissioned for the Macleod- Anderson overpass in 2000. Selected exhibitions include: The Presence of Absence (post-mortem), Nickle Arts Museum (2004-05); The Unswept Floor (post- mortem), Cultural Olympics, Cultural Foundation, Tinos, Greece (2004) and Triangle Art Gallery (2005); A Binary Perspective, Virginia Christopher Gallery (2003). Arnatt’s work is featured in collections such as: Prairie Art Gallery (Grande Prairie); City of Edmonton; Glenbow Museum; Nickle Arts Museum; Calgary Regional Arts Foundation; Athabasca University; Alberta Pre-Cambrian Resources; Alberta Arts Foundation.