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Inspired: Printmaker Kent Ambler

October 19th, 2020

I was born near Chicago and grew up in Indiana. I graduated from Ball State University with a fine arts degree where I took an intro to printmaking course. The course began with woodcuts, which instantly clicked with me. The process just made sense in my brain. I love the different mark making properties of the process.

After college, I moved to New Mexico and lived there for six years. New Mexico is beautiful but can be very isolating, and I started to miss the green landscape back east. My wife didn’t want to move anywhere cold and I wanted to move somewhere that didn’t have a stereotyped style of art, so with those guidelines, we found Greenville. We’ve been in the Upstate for 20 years now. It feels like home.

I love where I live, on several acres on Paris Mountain. The property has twelve acres and a gate, so there is no traffic outside my windows — just woodland, birds, a koi pond, and my three dogs running around. If you look at my work you will see much of this.

While the imagery in my art is generally subject- or object-oriented, the visual appearance of each piece is of most importance to me. I work from an aesthetic and intuitive approach rather than a conceptual one. I try not to overthink or over-plan my work. I generally do my best work when my brain is “turned off,” so to speak. I am inspired by the simplicity of idea and image addressed by genuine folk artists. I’ve always worked from life, my surroundings, and my observations.  Writers are often told to write about what they know and that is how I approach visual art. 

View more of Kent’s work at KentAmbler.com or on Instagram @KentAmblerArt.

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