Brent R. Laycock was born in 1947 in Lethbridge, Alberta, and raised on a prairie farm with a view of the Rockies on the western horizon. After completing a BFA in printmaking and an MFA in painting at Brigham Young University, Utah, Laycock returned to his native Alberta to establish his career as a visual artist, which has now spanned over three decades. He currently resides in Calgary, Alberta, with his wife, Kathy. Together they have five children and twelve grandchildren. Laycock’s work exhibits passionate, gentle, and powerful portraits of nature’s majesty dancing in dazzling light. His paintings have been exhibited and collected throughout the world.
Laycock’s career has experienced many highlights, such as commissions from Canada Post to create stamps of Waterton National Park and Glacier National Park, as well as having a watercolour presented to Queen Elizabeth II for Her Majesty’s Royal Collection at Windsor Castle in 1986. In 1999 he was commissioned to create a design for the roof of the ballroom of the new Hyatt Regency Hotel in downtown Calgary, measuring an outstanding 120 by 190 meters, visible from the air and several tall buildings. Waterton: Brush & Pen, published in 2006, contains 144 of Laycock’s paintings of Waterton Lakes National Park, with accompanying essays by renowned historian Fred Stenson. He was also awarded the Alberta Centennial Medal for Service in the Arts that same year. Laycock has been selected for membership in several of the most prestigious Canadian art organizations, such as the Society of Canadian Artists, the Canadian Society of Painters in Watercolour, and the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. Each of these organizations has often included his work in their juried exhibitions.
Brent Laycock works mainly in watercolour and acrylic, interpreting the landscape with loose, lyrical brushwork in a fluid, spontaneous style where the paint is applied in bold direct strokes rather than conforming to a preliminary drawing. He challenges himself to look beyond the obvious when taking in the big, dramatic vistas, hoping to communicate an emotional response rather than a detailed photographic representation. He compares his artwork to musical compositions, where the rhythm, repetitions, and movement are all involved in making a harmonious statement, the individual elements deriving their meaning from the way they interact with each other. Brent Laycock’s artwork has been available for purchase at the West End Gallery since 1982.
"The majority of my paintings are landscapes. Although I have experimented with many other forms and subjects, it is the interaction with the land that continually fuels my interest. Perhaps this passion comes from my background as a farm boy or perhaps it comes from just living where the sky, mountains, prairie and water have a continual impact on my perceptions. In the landscape, I see the spiritual connection between ourselves and the divine. I only hope to transmit some of its power to uplift the soul." - Brent R. Laycock