Shannah Mitchell

I Used to Play Here, 2021

85 × 105 cm
I am interested in the relationship between painting and experience and it's relevance in the current era. For me as an artist, several emotionally charged collisions need to take place to justify my works actuality. If successful, each moment of contact impacts the other and a cycle of energy is created that has the capacity to grow.
The first time this happens is when I see something I feel the need to paint. I have always been drawn to the juxtaposition of nature rendering fragments of man-made construction, beautiful. Then like so many others, nature alone can take my breath away or at times it's culture and its absurdity that does the same. There are many views that stop me in my tracks.
The second and for me most exciting moment of connection, is putting paint to canvas. The intuitive mark making can, on a good day, feel electric. Using oils, I flick, scratch and scrape to create a surface that comes alive. The opportunity to indulge in uncertainty, exploration, flexibility and surprise is a powerful and necessary antidote to the worrying predictability of everyday life. However without part three of the equation, I would not have felt free to nourish this part of my soul to the extent that I have. The audience.
To have done my job well, tension has been created between the viewer and the painting. The love, excitement, sadness and anger is tangible. Have I convinced anyone to come on this journey? My aim is to invite onlookers to slow down and wake up from their hypnotic trance propelling them through modern life. Should they feel compelled to observe their surroundings more slowly and with thought, or maybe tap into their own creativity, then the cycle of energy is complete and quality of life is restored for the individual and for future generations to pass the baton to.
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