After a 30 year career teaching and lecturing about Art and Design, Mike Bell took an early retirement in order to concentrate on his painting. Mike’s art is inspired by 30 years of living and working on the Northumberland coast of England and now, most recently in the Wilds of Redesdale near the border of Scotland. Mike has always been fascinated by the patterns of sand on the beach. Random piles of seaweed or driftwood, in Mike’s mind, is order and chaos together and soon becomes an inspiration for his next landscape painting.
“The images that I create I use a wide variety of materials such as sand, soil, coal dust, and driftwood are often embedded in my paint surfaces.” Mike goes on further and states “I want my paintings to be as natural as possible and rarely do I use a brush but I will use a finger, a knife, a trowel, sand ,plaster, spray paints and lots of builders materials to create impasto paint surfaces.”
Mike has experimented with Holographic Foils in his paintings in order to simulate the wonderful lighting of Northumberland area. Since moving to Redesdale he has been inspired and has become aware of the interaction of man and nature, in the Otterburn Army Range’s military roads, bunkers and old tanks, contrasted with wild crags, quarries, moorland and forest to create a wonderful tapestry at different times of year.
Mike states that “rock strata, strange cloud formations, moody sunsets, reflections in rivers and lakes all have me rushing for camera or sketchbook.” The “Land of Far Horizons”, Northumberland has light which enhances the tactile quality of the Landscape no matter what the season. His hope is that his work stimulates a wide range of perception and feelings for this “Land of Far Horizons”.
Other influences in Mike Bell’s art include the Artists JMW Turner, John Blockley, Andy Goldsworthy, Cezanne, Tapies and many more. Mike’s artwork has been exhibited in Galleries in London, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Newcastle, York ,Northumberland and Cumbria in England and Art Fairs located in Dubai,Toronto ,Las Vegas,Edinburgh,Newcastle and London. During this year Mikes work has featured in shows in UK I Newcastle,Cotswolds,Margate ,Cambridge & also New York, Florida ,Arkansas & Ontario,
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