Ashton S. Phillips is an award-winning contemporary, expressionist, and abstract landscape painter based in Gallup, New Mexico. Ashton studied painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the Fleisher Art Memorial, in Philadelphia, PA, under painters Jill Rupinski, Frederick Kaplan, Paul Dusold, and John Sevcik.
In 2015, Ashton visited New Mexico for the first time and instantly fell in love with its dramatic skies and sweeping expanses, its powerful, pure light, and the peaceful, openness of its people. In 2016, Ashton moved to New Mexico from Philadelphia with his young family to pursue his dream of creating art honoring the beauty and energy of this place. Since arriving, Ashton has painted prolifically, both in his studio and on location, with the energy and enthusiasm of a recent convert and a man following his dreams.
Ashton’s time in New Mexico has triggered new directions in his work. In particular, Ashton’s work has moved away from realism and increasingly incorporates abstraction, expressive gestures, palette-knife work, and bold color, as he reflects on and develops a deeper understanding of the vibrant and rich spirit of this place.
Ashton has exhibited his work widely since arriving in New Mexico. Exhibits include: the Center for Contemporary Arts, in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Copper Topp Gallery, in Albuquerque, New Mexico, the Moab Arts and Recreation Center, in Moab, Utah, the Art123 Gallery in Gallup, New Mexico, and, most recently, Galleria Carnaval in El Morro, New Mexico.
Ashton is represented by Galeria Carnaval in El Morro, NM, the Copper Topp Gallery in Albuquerque, NM, and is an artist member of the Art123 Gallery in Gallup, NM.
At its best, my experience of painting is meditative, exaltant, and charged. Like nothing else, painting pulls me out of myself and allows me to connect with both the living subject of the painting and the spontaneous, creative energy animating the subject and all things. I paint for this experience, which rejuvenates and nourishes me. I also paint to bring some artifact of this energy into the day-to-day world, as a reminder of the transcendent beauty that lurks around us, almost always under the surface of our conscious perception.