2020 was an extra challenging year for most of us on many levels. The constant ups and downs and uncertainty effected my studio practice. I struggled to find motivation at times and I felt uninspired.
Towards the end of the year I suddenly took the notion to try my hand at portraiture again after feeling inspired by some lovely photos of my friend's wee boy. I was struck by his innocence, his sense of curiosity and wonder in a world that can often seem to lose its sparkle among us adults.
I wanted to capture this spirit of innocence in a series of portraits of children, creating a much needed contrast to the relentless bad news, negativity and hostility we are bombarded with daily on the news, social media and elsewhere. And while still in the process of painting these portraits, they serve as a wonderful reminder to myself to keep a hold of my own sense of wonder and playfulness, and to focus on great possibilities, even in the face of adversity.
'Goddess (You Are Here)'
January - April 2019
At the very beginning of 2019 I set out to start an ambitious painting project. I wanted to create something big yet intricate, with each part holding equal value while flaunting its own uniqueness.
The previous year brought up some personal challenges to my identity. I began exploring what it meant to be female not only in the art world but in the world in general. I began working with this through paint, creating intersecting layers of order, then chaos and so forth. It's also an exploration of boundaries, a common theme throughout all of my art work.
I wanted to confront my own insecurities and really take up space, with all my glory, moods, complexities and imperfections. No apologies this time.
So this is a painting about being a woman. Being a female artist. Taking up space. Creating order. Creating chaos. Being multi faceted. Being whole. Embracing the dance between our brightness and our darkness.
'EAST vs WEST' - SOLO SHOW
AT ART PISTOL GALLERY
September 8th -30th 2018
My latest paintings celebrate the visual beauty of both Thailand and Scotland.
Having spent a total of 4 months in Thailand over the past 2 years, I feel a strong pull towards this part of the world for a number of reasons. Here is where I feel most connected to myself. I feel most at home in its rural parts, surrounded by unspoilt nature, ancient trees and feeling the earth on my bare feet.
Scotland has its own appeal though and I feel lucky to live in a country with such breathtaking scenery, all at an accessible distance. The changing skies paint their own beautiful picture over dwarfing hills and lush greenery. There is a certain intensity, both aesthetically and historically.
Continuing with the topic of memory, these paintings serve as a diary, recording my visual and emotional encounters and solidifying them in colours and shapes.
For more details check out the gallery blog post - https://www.artpistol.co.uk/michelle-campbells-show-east-vs-west
HOPE & INNOCENCE
November 2020 - Present
SYNESTHESIA - JOINT EXHIBITION
THE 13TH NOTE
October 2nd - 29th 2017
A selection of little paintings produced by myself and fellow artist/music geeks Andy Hurst, celebrating and combining our visual and audio experiences.
Each painting was a response to a song, using a variety of methods to visually convey the sounds, rhythms and emotions that they experience while listening to our chosen piece.
'STORAGE' - SOLO EXHIBITION
ART PISTOL GALLERY
July 29th - August 27th 2017
A collection of paintings I had been working on this year exploring the topic of memory and emotional attachment. Giclee prints of each painting featured are available, and some original paintings are still for sale at the gallery.
THE CELESTIAL PROJECT
November 2014 - November 2015
These paintings are the result of a long awaited collaboration with my friend Andy Peutherer.
We combined my slightly OCD geometric style with his loose and spontaneous methods to produce a mesmerising depiction of outer space. The paintings are made up of acrylic and spray paint to produce a unique style and wonderful effect.