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Valoy Eaton

 (born 1938)
Valoy Eaton is active/lives in Utah.  Valoy Eaton is known for landscape, western figure-genre.

Valoy Eaton

Biography from the Archives of askART

Regional landscape painter Valoy Eaton was born March 29, 1938, in Vernal, Utah. During the Depression, the family moved to Bingham for work in the Kennecott copper mine. When Valoy was five, the family returned to Vernal, where he first started experimenting with art.

During the next few years, Eaton continued to pursue his interest in art but without thinking of the pastime as a possible occupation. While wandering the fields around Vernal, spending time at his mother's home in La Point, and staying with his grandmother near the Uinta Mountains, Valoy grew to love the natural beauties of rural Utah.

In 1960, after graduation from Brigham Young University, where he studied art and played basketball on scholarship, Eaton moved to California, planning to study at the Art Center in Los Angeles. But a one-year waiting list sent Eaton and his wife back to Utah, where he got a job at Cyprus High School in Magna, Utah, as art teacher and coach. Painting at night, he returned to Brigham Young for more training, working with Dale Fletcher, and receiving his M.A. degree in 1971.

By this time, Eaton was able to quit teaching. In 1975, he took part in the annual exhibit of the National Academy of Western Art. In 1976, he was awarded the silver medal in the Royal Western Watercolor Show in Oklahoma City. He has since exhibited throughout the United States in Chicago, Houston, New York, San Francisco, Pittsburgh, and Salt Lake City.

Called the heir-apparent to Utah landscape artist LeConte Stewart, Eaton believes that truth lies in the reality of natural forms. He starts with a light brush drawing on the board and builds the masses gradually, stroke by stroke, tightening the images gradually, in what he terms "a series of corrected mistakes." Eaton's subjects continue to be simple statements about the land.

Eaton is an executive member of the National Academy of Western Art and a member of the Cowboy Hall of Fame. His work is in the collections of the Brigham Young University School of Law, Provo; Springville Museum of Art, Utah; Fort Worth National Bank, Texas; the J. Evetts Haley History Center, Texas; and Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah.

Valoy Eaton presents his work in the book, "In Natural Light: Paintings by Valoy Eaton", published 2003 by Gibbs Smith Publishing, with a foreword by Senator Hatch, the artist's cousin, and a biography by Vern G. Swanson, Director of the Springville Museum of Art.

Review By Dave Gagon
"Deseret Morning News"
IN NATURAL LIGHT:PAINTINGS BY VALOY EATON, Gibbs Smith Publishing, hardback, 106 pp., 205 color plates.

Valoy Eaton's paintings are to Thomas Kinkade's art as Bernini's "Ecstasy of St. Theresa" is to Gumby. Unlike the professed "painter of light," Eaton knows light, interpreting its impact on man and nature with honesty, craftsmanship and soul. His book "In Natural Light," a gallery stroll through the artist's best work, provides proof.

Sen. Orrin Hatch, the artist's cousin and obvious champion, offers the book's foreword, and Vern G. Swanson, director of the Springville Museum of Art, furnishes a concise and comprehensive biography of the painter, replete with captivating insights from their college art days together.

With more than 200 paintings, publisher Gibbs Smith offers readers a chance to witness the integrity and beauty of Eaton's expression for themselves. In addition, the artist provides tidbits of artistic wisdom helpful to aspiring artists and intriguing to art enthusiasts.

"As a small boy," Eaton writes, "I remember standing under a huge mulberry tree by our house and marveling at the beauty of the sunlight flickering through the leaves and branches and hitting the ground below." He confesses to being influenced by this mental image even today, 50 years later. "I have been caught up with the beauty of sunlight and shadow ever since."

In addition to offering works from museums and private collections, "In Natural Light" includes a special collection of 25 of the artist's paintings given to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for use in its temples throughout the world.

As always, Gibbs Smith has turned out a quality item. "In Natural Light's" reproductions of Eaton's paintings whether watercolors or oils are faithful to the originals, a feat not often accomplished by other publishers of art books. The binding is good, and its all-around presentation will make it a lovely addition to anyone's library.

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About  Valoy Eaton

Born:  1938 - Vernal, Utah
Known for:  landscape, western figure-genre