“Collage,” by the Rev. Canon Warner Traynham

[The Episcopal News] Two Dec. 15 receptions and an online gallery and catalog will feature some 50 canvases that the Rev. Canon Warner R. Traynham – a retired rector of St. John’s, Los Angeles – has painted and donated for sale to benefit the diocesan One Body & One Spirit Annual Appeal.

All are invited to greet the artist and view the paintings during two Dec. 15 gatherings at St. Paul’s Commons, 840 Echo Park Ave., Los Angeles: the 11:30 a.m. Lunch & Learn program hosted free of charge (register here) by the Immaculate Heart Community and the evening Shabbat service of Nefesh Jewish congregation.

Traynham will be available Dec. 15 from 1 – 2 p.m. and 5 – 7 p.m. in the Commons’s Great Hall, where the paintings – priced from $150 to $850 – are on view under the theme “Abstracts in Action” signifying their deployment for charitable purposes.

All proceeds go directly to the diocesan appeal, which to date has raised more than $300,000 to help congregations meet unbudgeted expenses through grants awarded by the Corporation of the Diocese.

Warner Traynham

In thanking Traynham for his generosity in donating the paintings, Bishop John Harvey Taylor has conveyed gratitude for Traynham’s sharing of talent and time to create treasure to assist local ministries.

“I tell people that painting is a kind of therapy for me,” Traynham notes in an artist’s statement. “In ministry you are not always certain of your impact. With painting, when you put the pigment on canvas, the feedback is immediate. Either it looks the way you want, or it does not, in which case you can continue, or wipe it out and begin again, until you get it to look the way you want – or accept the accident and incorporate it in your vision.

“My abstractions derive sometimes from the things I see, but mostly from my imagination. With abstractions, I call myself a colorist. I expect this exhibit will make it clear why.”

Born in Baltimore in 1936, Traynham attended Baltimore public schools, Dartmouth College, Oxford University, and the Virginia Theological Seminary. From 1983 to 2001 he was rector of St. John’s, which in 2008 was designated the diocese’s pro-cathedral. He describes himself as a self-taught painter.

To purchase a painting, or request additional information, email media@ladiocese.org or phone 213.482.2040, ext. 240. The paintings also may be viewed by appointment.