I like to refer to my work as Anthropological Expressionism. Digging not only through the history of modern art, but through mass culture, identity, science, the vanishing public domain, media, cultural phenomenon and linking them together in my paintings.
I am interested in process as much as style. Painting, print making, photography, influences from sculpture, architecture and writing have all found their way into my work. I combine elements of abstract expressionism, geometric abstraction, post modern philosophy and pop art to name a few.
Begining in November of 2007, my work has been dealing with the paradox of time. Inspired by Einstein's notion that time is elliptical and is constantly repeating itself, sometimes the same, other times slightly or completely different...and that all these moments from these multiple lives may still exist in parallel space. I simply asked the question what might this look like as a painting? What if you could actually see random clusters of moments in time all at once? What images would you see and what types narratives could these juxtapositions create? Throughout the paintings I repeat various images as an even more tangible illustration of this theory, showing the same image living multiple lives in different settings.
These two ideas, the amalgamation of styles and the inspiration drawn from Einstein's theories have become the visual basis for my work. They are a platform from which I critique and comment on the times we live in.
My two most recent series "would you like to become a fan?" And "the burden of ambition" explores the impact of social networking, media influence, and the ever-fluctuating values of contemporary culture. Linking Warhol's famous quote that "in the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes" with the intense media circus that social networking has become and the existential conundrum this creates in the digital wake left behind. We live in strange times, where the line between real and virtual life is being blurred by obsessions with status, manufactured celebrity and ambitions that have gone supernova.This series, as with all my paintings, are each small parts of of a much larger inquiry into the complexities of contemporary American culture.
John Bell is a nationally emerging artist who describes his work as postmodern mash up. He combines abstract expressionism, geometric abstraction, pop art and other movements in contemporary art. Primarily a painter, Bell is a multi-disciplinary artist incorporating print making photography, sculpture, text, installation and performance art. His work depicts wide ranging themes from social to political, popular culture, media and the public domain to comment on -- and understand the complexities of contemporary American culture.
Ohio-born John Bell lives and works in Salt Lake City, Utah. Upcoming solo museum exhibitions include Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, BYU Museum of Art. He has exhibited in countless solo and group exhibitions, including Art Basel, Miami, New York's Time Warner Center, Southern Nevada Museum of Art, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, and Salt Lake City, UT. His work has been placed in many private collections throughout the U.S. and Europe. Press accolades include a profile in the national art magazine Blue Canvas (Los Angeles), a cover editorial in Seven Magazine, (Las Vegas), Beyond Pop; The man and message behind the paint. His work and mid-century modern home has been highlighted in the Los Angeles-based, lifestyle, and culture-centric 944 Magazine and Utah Style & Design. Hailed as "artist on the rise" by Salt Lake Magazine, Bell has received numerous acknowledgments and reviews in NY Art World, City Weekly, Salt Lake City, Seven, and Juxtapoz magazines and a host of online publications. He is represented by Mondo Fine Art, Salt Lake City, Brett Wesley Contemporary, Las Vegas, Cancio Contemporary, Miami/New York.
Museums, Fairs, Competitions & Commissions:
- September 2012 -The Next Supper, Blurring the lines between, viewer, art and experience. Performance art & installation, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- June 2012 -Play Me I'm Yours, city-wide public art installation, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- Nov. 2011 - January 2012 Cancio Contemporary, Art Basel, Miami, Bloomingdales showcase, Miami FL
- June 2011 - Lawn Gnomes Eat Your Heart Out, public art project, Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, 337 Project, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 2010 - Aqua Art Fair, Art Basel, Cancio Contemporary, Miami, FL
- June 2010 - Contemporary Masters, sculpture commission artist-designed miniature golf, 337 Project & Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 09 - Aqua Art Fair, Art Basel, Cancio Contemporary, Miami, FL
- June 09 - The Urban Face Off, 337 Project, mural commission/competition, Salt Lake City, UT
- May 09 - Spring Art Affair, regional juried exhibition, Southern Nevada Museum of Fine Art, Las Vegas, NV (curated by Elizabeth Herridge, Director, Guggenheim Hermitage Museum)
- December 08 - The Artist Fair, Art Basel, Miami, FL
- April 06 - Mural Commission, Time Warner Center, New York City, NY
- June 2010 - Salt Lake County Government Center, Salt Lake City, Utah.
- Work throughout the United States & Europe.
- March 2010 - Utah Museum of Fine Art, Foster Art Program, Salt Lake City, UT, presentation, discussion on work inspiration, and creation of new, original genre.
- April 2010 - Salt Lake Community College, Salt Lake City, UT, presentation, discussion Q&A, on working process, work inspiration and creation of new, original genre.
- March 2012 - Post Modern Blues, Nox Contemporary, Salt Lake City, UT
- July 2011 - Perform Chinatown, dinner party performance piece, Jancar Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
- October 2010 - Would you like to become a fan?, Mondo Fine Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- June 2010 - The Burden of Ambition, Brett Wesley Contemporary, Las Vegas, NV
- July 09 - The Elegant Universe, Brett Wesley Contemporary, Las Vegas, NV
- January 09 - Size Matters, Pop Shops, Salt Lake City, UT
- June 08 - Survey, DDR Projects, Long Beach, CA
- January 08 - THE SOUND & THE FURY, Utah Arts Alliance, Salt Lake City, UT
- March 07 - BUILDING ICONS, Patrick Moore Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- September 05 - (re) Defining Space, Time Warner Center, New York City, NY
- April 05 - Defining Space, ONE Modern Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- February 05 - 24 Hours, Artisan Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- July 04 - Untitled, Evening Editions Press, Salt Lake City, UT
- May 04 - Drinking, Dancing & Smoking with the Muse, Chroma Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- June 2012 - 15th Street Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- March 2012 - The Plastic Propaganda Poster Project, Westminster College, Salt Lake City, UT
- February 2012 - Central Utah Art Center, Utah Ties juried exhibition, Ephraim, UT
- August 2011 - Conari Gallery, gestural live painting, Denver, CO
- August 2010 - Arin Contemporary, Laguna Beach, CA
- April 2010 - Modern Values, Mondo Fine Art, at Lightspot Modern, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 09 - Not Just Another Pretty Face, salon & holiday show, UMOCA, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 09 - Small Works, juried show, Jill Dawsey, chief curator, Utah Museum of Fine Art, Kayo Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- November 09 - Snap To Grid, Los Angeles Center For Digital Art, Los Angeles, CA
- June 09 - Not Just Another Pretty Face, gala & exhibition, UMOCA, Salt Lake City, UT
- April 09 - The Truth of Abstraction, Patrick Moore Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- February 09 - Digital Art, Phillips Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- January 09 - Love and Power, Brett Wesley Contemporary, Las Vegas, NV
- December 08 - Holiday Group Show, Phillips Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- October 08 - 5x5, Salt Lake Magazine's, 5 On the Rise, Phillips Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- May 08 - Untitled, Utah Arts Council, Rio Grande Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- February 08 - 3rd Annual SLCC President's Art Show; Library Square Center, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 07 - Holiday Group Show; Phillips Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- July 07 - 1+1 = 14, Artisan Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- August 05 - Utah Art's Council, Rio Grand Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT
- December 04 - White-Out, curatorial artist, ONE Modern Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- October 04 - Featured artist; grand opening of ONE Modern Art, Salt Lake City, UT
- August 04 - Utah Arts Council, Mixed media, works on paper; juried selection, Kimball Art Center, Park City, UT
- June 03 - Chroma Gallery, Salt Lake City, UT