Shelley Mitchell - As the Water Goes
Date and place of birth
Shelley Mitchell was born in 1952 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Today she divides her time between Halifax and Lunenburg.
Her education, career
Shelley Mitchell began her career as an architectural draftsperson and project manager for many years before returning to the University of Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, where she earned a BFA in painting and art history. Since then, her work has been exhibited in the Maritimes, Quebec, Ontario and Maine.
Her work, her art
The Atlantic Coast, with its ever-changing atmosphere and the diversity of the land, sea and coastline, is a never-ending source of inspiration for the artist. Every moment of the day and every change of atmosphere holds new beauties to paint. Particularly attracted to the light at the beginning and end of the day - when the colours are rich and the shadows deep, she likes to linger on the surface of the water, to lose herself in its reflections.
In Shelley Mitchell's oils, a boat is reflected imperfectly and sometimes, surprisingly, perfectly in the water, creating an enticing symphony of colour, line and texture. The way the colours stretch elegantly in the reflection is reminiscent of the intricate folds of rich fabrics.
The artist spares no effort in finding beautiful handmade boats to paint. In the summer, she is constantly on the lookout as she sails around Nova Scotia and Maine. She also makes at least one trip a year to the New England coast and is happy to drive to ports in search of small boatyards and marinas.
For the artist, boats are exotic symbols of freedom, adventure and fun. The elegance of their design fascinates her. This is particularly true for boats and other small craft, which are often handmade with care, craftsmanship and the finest materials. Whether these boats are abandoned, in use, afloat or whether she has imagined them in the water, she paints them as other artists paint the human figure - as a deeply meaningful object. One senses the extraordinary personality and beauty of each one.
"What I wish to evoke with my paintings is a moment in time that expresses my experience of this day surrounded by water, light and magic: a gift to myself and to others. "
Realistic, her art carries a powerful emotional message. Her work embodies serenity, balance and escape to a moment of tranquility.
Shelley Mitchell is represented by the Au P'tit Bonheur Art Gallery since November 2020, exclusively for Quebec.