My studio practice is motivated by a fascination with complexity and the infinite
possibility of contemporary visual art and abstraction. I explore my interests through a
rhizomatic interdisciplinary practice that includes painting, collage, installation,
collaboration and animation. With each project, I approach the exploration of complexity,
possibility and its related concepts with a different methodology, sometimes leading into
more specified or tangential territories. However, all my work is rooted in the conceptual
framework of contemporary abstract painting and has an intrinsic characteristic of time
consuming, almost compulsive, art-making activity. As support for this activity, I've
been researching such things as post-structuralist theory, process art, mathematics, simulation, relational aesthetics, as well as organic growth and form.
Leslie Bell is an abstract painter and filmmaker living in Calgary, Alberta. She received
her BFA in Painting from the Alberta College of Art + Design in 2002, and went on to
complete her MFA in Studio Arts at Concordia University, Montreal in 2009. Leslie's
paintings have been collected by numerous private and public organizations, including
the ColArt Collection, the Canada Council's ArtBank and the Alberta Foundation for the
Arts. In 2008, Leslie received the QAS/NFB Production Scholarship, leading to her first
animated film. Since then, Leslie has been involved with Quickdraw Animation Society
as a producing member, volunteer and board member. Leslie's animations have gone on
to be screened internationally and she has produced video projects for Sled Island and
PopMontreal. She has also attended residencies at the Banff Center and participated in
site-specific installations for the pre-demolition projects "WreckCity" and
"PhantomWing" that took place in Calgary. Leslie is currently teaching at the Alberta
College of Art + Design in the Painting Department.
Any public art project that I will propose will start with public engagement. I will speak
with the community about the location, its history and the purpose they want the art to
serve. I'll then present the community with some options and different media approaches
based on their feedback. These ideas may range from visual art pieces that are an
extension of my personal abstract art practice to projects specifically designed for the
site, potentially including collaboration with community stakeholders. My work is
motivated by possibility, and I'm open to the possibility that a public art project may lead
my practice in a new direction.
See the full artist roster and read more about the Painted City initiative.