CREATING SOMETHING FROM NOTHING
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.
Kentville folk artist Dennis Ramsay sits on his front steps with a selection of his recently-created art.