Mixing It Up

 "Mixing It Up"

Mixed media by Linda Bell

June 26 - July 15

Opening Reception: Tuesday, June 26,  6-8 p.m.

Meet the Artist: Saturday, June 30, 2–3 p.m.

Big Fruitbowl_Linda Bell   Flower Power_Linda Bell
"Big Fruitbowl"   "Flower Power"


Artist’s Statement

"The title of this show, “Mixing it Up”, refers to both the materials I use to create my paintings but also to how I approach my art and the spirit behind the process of painting.

As a self-described mixed media/collage artist I have found that one of the places that I start when doing painting demonstrations is to show people how I use various materials and tools to create different and unique effects. Acrylic paints are my base and I use a wide range of acrylics from bright transparent inks to heavy body opaque products as well as a number of gels and other mediums. I also mix things up with other products such as watercolor crayons, oil pastels, painted and commercial papers and drawing materials such as charcoal. Various tools for mark making such as stencils and stamps and scrapers add to the mix. The supports I use include canvas, wood panel and sometimes watercolor paper.

However, Mixing it Up also applies to the way I approach my art. Sometimes I start a painting with a certain subject and structure in mind but other times i just start painting using collage materials or choosing a color i like and spilling inks and fluid acrylics on a canvas. Occasionally an “unsuccessful” painting serves as the start of a new painting.

While there are various points of view of what is meant by abstract art I describe all my work as abstract, ranging from semi abstract (or semi representational) to non objective ( no identifiable subject matter). If I start my painting with particular content in mind whether that be a still life, a figure or a scene I don’t strive for 'representational' exactness. Other artist do that far better than I could ever hope to do. Instead my intent and interest is to mix things up with the subject matter by rearranging or emphasizing different things. Playing with some of the elements of art such as shape, line, pattern, space and color to create something visually appealing but unique is my aim. Painting is my joy not my job and the freedom of approaching things from the perspective of 'mixing things up' keeps it fun for me and I hope some of this is transmitted to the viewers of my art."

Linda Bell's website

We asked Linda Bell some questions to gain insight into her creative process.

Q: Why art?

A number of people over the years have expressed to me how lucky I am to be able to paint and then they go on to use that expression “I can’t even draw a straight line”. I used to go into “my talk” about how anyone can learn to paint and I still believe that to be true but I no longer think that is the key. I now believe that many people who paint or pursue other artistic pursuits are highly motivated to do so. In fact the answer to the question, why art, is that I think that there is an internal drive in some people that is almost a compulsion at times.

Q: What’s the value of creativity in your life and in society?

This is a tough question but I have no doubt that creativity and “the arts” are profoundly important to the growth and development of society as a whole and make a significant difference on an individual personal level to each of us every day. Can you imagine a world without music, for example? Creativity is critical, not only in the arts but also science, our organizations and culture. The ability to think differently and be creative is part of what defines us as humans and moves us forward.

Q: What ignites your creative process?

I'm really not sure. Sometimes I have so many ideas for new paintings I don’t know where to start and at other times, often when I am under pressure to get ready for a show, I procrastinate or stare at the blank canvas. I do know looking at other people’s art often does trigger the desire to get started. It is a bit of a mystery however.

Q: What memorable response have you had to your work?

It is lovely when people tell you how much they like your work or a particular painting or if you win an award or sell a painting. I have been fortunate to have had a lot of positive feedback but I think the most memorable comment I had was from a former classmate recently who said to me “I don’t know what it is about your paintings but they make me smile, they make me happy”.  What could be better than that?

Ferry Building Gallery
1414 Argyle Avenue
West Vancouver, BC
Gallery Hours
Tues - Sun: 11AM - 5PM
Closed Mondays
Tel 604-925-7290