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Chris Easley


In December of 2004, I left my home state of California to be a painter. The people I knew thought I was crazy, and maybe I was. I didn’t care - I had to go. I had a 1986 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Brougham with 180,000 miles on it, $900 cash in my pocket, an history degree from Berkeley (I was a scholarship football player) and a couch in Taos to crash on. In Taos, there was snow on the ground, and the owner of the couch was an acquaintance of an acquaintance, so I only lasted 2 days before I had to go. I wasn’t turning back, so I called up a sister I hadn’t seen for a few years in Oklahoma and moved there. I became a janitor at a daycare, then I worked at Walmart for $3.50 an hour untilI I was able to leverage my Berkeley degree and football experience into a teaching and coaching job. I became a coaching and teaching vagabond in Oklahoma and then the same in New Mexico while I continued to paint at night. Eventually, I left coaching, began to hate teaching and knew it was time to get back to my true purpose. 


In 2021 I quit my day job to paint full-time. I’ve been painting through it all for over twenty years. My development as an artist has been formed by this belief system: my ability to take chances, let go of the perfect painting, and get to the core of what I want to do without the need to satisfy trends or appearances. I paint nearly every day now and when I’m not, I’m still painting in my head. I don’t care where I paint, or what I paint, I just paint without the knowledge of what I’m going to do until it presents itself to me. I’m constantly pushing and breaking my expectations like an athlete in training; listening to my eyes and experience and then ignoring them completely. The result is work that manifests itself in such a way that I can’t duplicate it. Each piece is its own exploration, and to that end, unique.


My paintings are colorful explorations of the world as I experience it - oscillating between abstraction and realism. The marks I make can be brutal and rough or elegant and soft. When I paint my mind is empty and so are my expectations. I am just painting - bit by bit - serving the work.

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