“Remembrance/Spontaneous Vision” new acrylic paintings by artist Lee Monts will be featured in the main gallery of City Art in the Congaree Vista June 4 though July 9, 2011. The public is invited to a reception for the artist Thursday June 9th from 5:00-8:00 p.m.

With no formal education in art, Monts began painting with acrylics in 2002. Since then, according to City Art Gallery director Wendyth Wells, he has shown in the Columbia area and is quickly graduating from emerging artist to a collectable area favorite.

Monts primarily creates contemporary acrylic paintings on canvas, paper and board. He prefers to use a limited palette with colors that produce a wide range of hues and values. The end result according to Monts is generally an abstracted landscape that while often ambiguous creates a feeling of familiarity for the viewer or relates to some shared life experience.

According to Monts, “Art is about an innate need to create and the process of this creation. The application of color and the use or non-use of texture adds to the complexity of the painting.”

He says he rarely has a preconceived notion or complete expectation of the outcome of his painting. Though some are created in a one session, often certain challenges within the creative process require multiple sessions and reevaluations. “It is important to always allow the creative process to continue which could lead to a different path where better replaces good,” he says.

A feature article on Monts by nationally known writer Cynthia Boiter titled “Artist come lately…” appeared in the January 2010 issue of Lake Murray Magazine and Northeast Columbia Magazine.

The artist was selected as one of six artists for Street Gallery III, a rotating billboard project in 2010 sponsored by the Cultural Council of Richland and Lexington Counties and Lamar Advertising.

Monts also received the “In Memory of Lena Massara” Award in 2010 for his first-time entry in the South Carolina Watermedia Society Show; his entry, “Abstracting the Respite of My Childhood”, is currently traveling the state with the other award winning works associated with the 33rd annual show.

Monts will be featured, along with nine other selected artists, in a limited edition Capital City Art Book to be published by Pocket Productions in Spring/Summer 2011.

Said Wells, “We are looking forward to the tranquil quality of Monts’ work in our main gallery during the month of June.”

A native of Chapin, South Carolina, Monts has resided in Columbia, South Carolina, since 1987 and is employed full time by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control. His formal education is in geology, having obtained degrees from the College of Charleston and the University of South Carolina.