Stuart Mitchell a Bristol-based multidisciplinary artist working in painting, printmaking, animation, video and sound production. His work is often themed around ritual, altered states and subconscious imagery, having a composite nature that creates an element of ambiguity.
He has worked with public art producers, galleries, museums, theatre companies, film and animation festivals, musicians, visual and performance artists on an extensive range of artistic and digital projects. His own artwork has been exhibited in galleries, art fairs and theatres in the UK, Europe and the USA.
Growing up in South West London, as the son of a gallery owner, Mitchell developed an early interest in art and, from a young age, would often sit in on life-drawing sessions and mix with artists. As a teenager in the 1980’s he was encouraged to pursue a career in computer technology and soon found himself working in the City of London, preparing stockbroking firms for the digitisation of the London Stock Exchange. In his early 20’s he left the rat race of the City and travelled around India (where he would later make several more trips) before spending a year working in Australia. On his return he spent a number of years in Devon where his daughter was born, before moving back to London where he spent several years managing his step-father’s print and design business. Mitchell returned to the South West of England again in 2001, where he gained a BSc(Hons) Digital Art and Technology at the University of Plymouth and was employed as a Digital Media Coordinator at Exeter Phoenix, multi-arts venue, for a number of years before he relocated to Bristol and freelanced for the public art producer Situations being responsible for the digital engagement programme surrounding Alex Hartley’s NowhereIsland, one of 12 Artist Taking the Lead projects for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad (nowhereisland.org). In 2012 he temporarily relocated to the United States with his artist wife, where they lived in Brooklyn, NY, while she worked on upcoming exhibitions in New York and Boston. While in New York, Mitchell spent time developing his painting practice before returning to Bristol where he currently lives and works from his multidisciplinary studio and print workshop.
My paintings usually begin with a single subject, often an improvised figure, and develop through the accumulation of further imagery gathered from fragments of dreams, memories and personal symbols. The act of painting and over-painting multiple layers creates a semi-chaotic collage which I will eventually work into pictorial coherence through the application of composition, colour and form. The layering of ideas and the layering of paint are both guided by my subconscious, creating a dreamlike reality with an open narrative.