Paintings That Move™?
How does Fred Childs create Paintings That Move™?
Imagine you are standing in a cylinder that is sliced into
pieces that are reshaped to create a set of flat panels.
Each piece is a painting in a horizon that is 360 degrees.
Opening the slices, the horizon will move continuously.
The sketch below illustrates this with four panels
that first form a box, and then are opened to create a
quadtych. Imagine the the dot in the sketches is where
you are standing as you view the paintings.
Fred Childs' original works of acrylic and
iridescent paint have been placed in private collections and
exhibited in a number of public venues on California's
As a member for 8 years of MPPAF, his works
have been shown in museums and galleries in Pacific Grove,
Carmel, Monterey, and Los Gatos. He painted a 35 ft by
45 ft backdrop of Jerusalem and hills for donation to the
Church of the Highlands in San Bruno. The church has
performed Easter and Christmas in front of it. A 5 ft
tall by 18 ft mural painted by Fred Childs hung at St.
Jude's Church in Marina for 6 years. His paintings have
graced homes all over Northern California.
The inspiration for Fred Childs' work comes from
observing nature. His Paintings that Move™ combine the
Chinese concept of "the four seasons" with the spatial
play of Escher puzzles, leading to paintings on panels that
can then be arranged to form a variety of new horizons.
Using Maxwell Parish colors with iridescent paints, Fred
Childs creates illumination effects that vary with changes
in lighting, carrying the concept of movement into time as
well as space.
Dreams are my pencils. Often I will awake and paint
what is remembered in the early A.M. The question arises,
"Where is that? Is that Tahoe? No, it's Washington
-- or is it Carmel?"
My paintings are created without drawings or computer
generated images. The main idea is usually formed in
As a painter, I am self-taught. I grew up as an
"army brat," travelling the world, learning different
languages and cultures, then landing and settling on the
Monterey Peninsula. I graduated from Seaside High at age 17,
and then studied to be a history teacher at San Jose State.
All the while, I was intrigued by painted works of art.
As a youth, I would look at a painting and wonder what
was happening on the left, right, top & bottom.
Inspired by the "four season" Chinese style, Maxwell Parish
colors, Escher puzzles -- and always given free reign of my
creations, I would create a painting than then go on to
paint what was happening on the left or right. This
progressed to having the left side match up with the right
side. In my mind, my paintings encircled me. A
rainbow could move across a cloud bank. Island pieces
would move to become bays. I also use iridescent paint
to create colors that change with the light source, with
sometimes pale or strong illuminescence.
Painting began as a way of interpreting my observations
and dreaming to satisfy myself. Then, given this gift,
giving back became very important. This has led me to
donate works to many churches and causes. In the
Gallery of this website, you can see and learn more
about the works I have donated to St. Jude's Church in
Marina, CA and to the Church of the Highlands in San Bruno,
CA. Handstretched canvas screens, that stand or fold,
have been donated or loaned for display in the Pacific Grove
Art Center, the MPAF Gallery in Carmel, and other venues.
Now a practicing artist, I also create works for sale and
accept commissions for custom wall murals, screens, hangings
and framed paintings.