Walter Day

King of the Jews
'King of the Jews' by Walter Day

Longtime Clayton resident Walter Day will be featured in the February art exhibit at the Clayton Center.

Day has lived in Clayton since 1983, having moved here from Massachusetts, and paints in oil on canvas.

“Painting is the expression of my thought process,” he said, and this led him to entitle his show “Images from Mental Notes.”

His goal “is to extract from the memory and recall actual visual stimulations rather than merely copy” what he sees.

He added, “It is my desire to communicate the subject … with every piece I render. How [I] see images artistically has always been the underlying focus of my work.”

Day’s work in North Carolina started with what he calls Contemporary Old South, followed by landscapes.

“I sampled and experimented with various schools of discipline in search of my own comfort of expression,” he said. “My work was still evolving as I painted personal portraits, portraits of homes, portraits of pets, and works in Native American context.”

He participated in a traveling group show and then a series of one-man shows.

Today he flirts with different techniques and disciplines and believes there remains a distinct, identifiable element by which his work may be recognized.

“Painting is the expression of my thought process.”

Day studied art and design at the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, N.Y.,  and left after one year to start painting.

When he, his wife, and son moved to Clayton, they started “The Friends of God” radio and television programs, and he painted to support the ministry.

He has been a board member of the Wake Visual Art Association, served as a member of the Clayton Steering Committee for Public Art, and was commissioned by Johnston Health for the creation of works to be installed in the lobbies and reception areas of Johnston Medical Centers in Clayton and Smithfield.

He has had numerous exhibits throughout eastern North Carolina, and his work hangs in such places as Banks of America, the former Wachovia Banks, and the former Glaxo Wellcome facility.

Among his awards are first, second, and third places, United Tribes Unity Conference, Raleigh; Regional Artist Project Grant, United Arts & Raleigh Arts Commission; Purchase Award (Glaxo), WVAA Artsplosure Raleigh; and two honorable mentions, Johnston County Art Competition, Smithfield.


Clayton resident Walter Day will be honored at a free meet-the-artist  reception at the Clayton Center Feb. 9 from 6 to 7:30 p.m.