Anita Utas was born in London, Ontario, and now resides in Ottawa. She received her honours Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History at Western University where she studied painting and drawing under Paterson Ewen and Duncan de Kergommeaux. She went on to complete her Bachelor of Education, and she completed coursework toward her MA in Art History at Queen’s University.
After working as an art teacher in London, Ontario, Anita traveled overseas and spent seven years teaching in international schools in Japan, South Korea, Singapore, and Venezuela. She has traveled extensively and draws upon these experiences as inspiration for her paintings. Her love for animals is expressed in her new series of wildlife paintings to be used for animal related fundraisers.
Anita has been painting professionally for over ten years. Her work is included in corporate and private collections in Canada, the U.S.A., and Europe. Her influences include William Turner, Caspar David Freidrich, and the Norwegian painter Harald Sohlberg.
The role of the artist, I believe, is to express what has significant meaning in our lives, and in doing so, inspire viewers to contemplate these concepts on a deeper level. Through my work, I wish to offer a respite from our urban, tethered existence. We enter a work of art to divest ourselves of our physical limits; the closed spaces we have created in our lives and minds. A painting becomes a place where we can explore and experience what we are seeking, be it a communion with nature, or an inner dialogue that helps us come closer to an awareness of ourselves and our place in this world.
My landscapes often capture ephemeral moments as viewed in nature; the quiet magic when the day moves to dusk, the way the sun illuminates a mountain range, the lifting of a storm. I am drawn to the calming forces of far off vistas; landscapes that are beyond simple visual identification.
A note about my animal paintings: Since 1970, 60 percent of the world's mammals, birds, fish and reptiles have been wiped out by human activity. In Canada, half (451 of 903) of monitored wildlife species declined in abundance. I want to raise awareness about the plight of our beautiful wildlife and help the organizations that protect them. A portion of sales of all animal paintings and prints is donated to wildlife rescue and animal rights organizations. Please contact me for more information.