At Montserrat School of Visual Art I explored a wide range of styles and techniques, studied under Roger Martin, met the painter, Paul Scott. It was during this time that I started experimenting with shaped canvases and developed reductionist composition concepts.  Woven through this was a concentration on the use of color, for both expressive and compositional control.


After a move to Bloomington, Indiana in 1975 I worked in graphic design and continued my exploration of shaped canvases. Early on these were flat irregular polygons, but I’ve always enjoyed sculpture and desired something more substantial from my painted canvases. When, in 1981 I came across extruded foam, I started down a new path with sculpted supports that could satisfy both artistic interests.  I have since, worked with a number of man-made materials: expanded PVC, high density urethane (HDU), cross-linked polyethylene (XLP) and I've always enjoyed working with wood. Sculpted supports and constructions have continued to develop for use with and without canvas.


My current work involves building wooden support panels and applying entire sheets of paint to the prepared panels. In the painting process, I work in reverse on large sheets of glass, developing the image from the foreground to the background. The result is a thick vinyl-like sheet of paint. I love the enigmatic nature of this surface, where you can see the immediacy of the strokes, but are presented with a glossy smooth surface.


Rarely have I returned to the rectangular canvas, maintaining my focus instead on composition in relation to  sculpted form or constructions. Often I use landscape themes to examine our relationship with our world as well as a metaphor for the changing paradigms and intricacies of the mind.  I expect that I will always explore creative use of materials in my search for new insights and methods of visual presentation.



Pulling a sheet of paint in preparation for mounting.

A painting lesson in the studio.

2016 Ekphrasis Show at the Venue Fine Art with poet Julia Karr discussing her impressions of "Finding Florence" and how it inspired her poem, "Florence Found".




Copyright 2018 James B. Campbell, Campbell Arts.