Known as one of Santa Fe’s foremost stone carvers for nearly twenty years, Kirk Tatom traded his chisel for a paintbrush in 1997 and has again become accomplished in his chosen medium. He is now known for painting the lush green fields and farms to which he often gravitates.
Born in Manhattan, Kansas, Tatom began his formal art training at the University of Utah from which he obtained a B.F.A. in 1972 on a full merit scholarship. From there, he continued his education at the Kansas City Art Institute.
Tatom’s attention to detail as a sculptor carried over into the craftsmanship of his paintings. Preparation of the panel requires just the right placement of texture. The surface may be sanded, scraped, polished, scored, and then washed, stained, and glazed. Next comes the march of the elements of landscape–a boat, a vineyard, trees, animals. He often has as many as ten paintings in the works at the same time. The effect of his carefully crafted paintings is heightened by the exquisitely hand carved gold leaf frames built by his father and brother.