Den­nis Ram­say

CRE­AT­ING SOME­THING FROM NOTH­ING

Truro Daily News - - PEOPLE - KIRK STARRATT [email protected]­tynews.ca

It was a hard start to life.

He was or­phaned. Spent his youth in in­sti­tu­tions. Shock, de­pres­sion and men­tal health bat­tles — more than his fair share.

Art was his re­lease.

Forty years later, Den­nis Ram­say has good days and bad ones. The abuse he once en­dured is in the past, but still lingers, al­ways at the pe­riph­ery of his mem­ory.

It’s a sunny, but chilly, late win­ter afternoon as the Kentville folk artist sits on his front stoop, his new­est paint­ings propped on the stairs. Some fea­ture prom­i­nent fig­ures from pop­u­lar cul­ture.

Bright colours. Bold strokes. Ab­stract faces. So­cial com­men­tary. Stylis­ti­cally and vis­ually orig­i­nal. A glimpse into Ram­say’s soul.

Prices range, $10 and up.

Some­one stops and of­fers him a cup of cof­fee.

Ram­say de­fines his ex­is­tence as mak­ing “some­thing out of noth­ing.”

He hopes to share his life story soon in the form of a book, paint­ing his own pic­ture with words.

Mean­while, his cre­ative out­let process is from mind, to brush, to canvas. In­spired by the art­work of van Gogh, Pi­casso, Rem­brandt, Maud Lewis and Alex Colville, Ram­say sim­ply wants to cre­ate.

“That’s what art is all about,” he said. “That’s where your imag­i­na­tion has to kick in.”

Ma­te­ri­als in­clude scraps of wood and house paint, items oth­ers have cast aside. His sub­ject mat­ter de­pends on his mood or emo­tion of the day. To ap­pre­ci­ate his work is to ap­pre­ci­ate Ram­say, a self-de­scribed “starv­ing artist.”

Reach­ing out through his Youtube chan­nel, he also strives to connect with the world through artis­tic and po­lit­i­cal ex­pres­sion and song.

In warmer weather, you’ll find him sit­ting un­der a tree in his yard. He prefers to work in nat­u­ral light.

Here he’ll fin­ish seven to nine paint­ings be­fore lay­ing his brushes to rest for the evening.

Mak­ing some­thing out of noth­ing.

KIRK STARRATT

Kentville folk artist Den­nis Ram­say sits on his front steps with a se­lec­tion of his re­cently-cre­ated art.

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