top of page

I was born in London and raised in Los Angeles.

 

As a child I was always drawing and painting. I continued my art education throughout high school.  Then after three years in the military, I became interested in photography and filmmaking.  I received a degree from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara while simultaneously taking classes at the Santa Barbara Art Institute. This was followed by a career in the film business.

 

A few years ago, I decided to return to painting and began taking watercolor classes. Eventually, I discovered acrylic paint and collage.

 

My recent work has followed two paths. 

 

On the one hand, I use bits of fabric, news print, cardboard, old photos and in some cases rusted metal, along with acrylic paint to create layered constructions. I’m interested in creating a sense of history, of things lost, of places buried, always hoping to leave the viewer with more questions than answers.

 

I also love to simply paint. I am interested in the essence of a landscape expressed through composition, color and shape, not a faithful depiction, but an emotional one.  Country roads, two-lane highways and byways have always intrigued me. The mystery of distant tree lines and far-off horizons are what I am trying to realize in my paintings. 

Exhibitions:

Cannon Beach Arts Association, "In The Moment" Cannon Beach, OR, 2024

Oregon Society of Artists + Rental Sales Gallery, members show, Portland OR. 2024

Cannon Beach Arts Association, "Traveler" Cannon Beach, OR, 2024

Oregon Society of Artists,

"12 by 12" Portland OR, 2023

Cannon Beach Arts Association, "Monochrome" Cannon Beach, OR, 2023

Oregon Society of Artists + Rental Sales Gallery, members show, Portland OR. 2023

Vancouver Music and Arts Festival, Vancouver WA, 2023

LA Art Show-bG Gallery Gestalt Project
Los Angeles, CA, 2019

144 Space, A New Gestalt Project-bG Gallery, Santa Monica, CA August 2018


"Constructed" 13 Los Angeles Artists represented by Saatchi Art, Santa Monica, CA, 2018


Brentwood Art Festival, Brentwood, CA, 2016


Brentwood Art Festival, Brentwood, CA, 2015

Born in London, raised in Los Angeles.

Born in London, raised in Los Angeles.

As a child I loved to draw and paint.  Later, in high school, I continued my art education.  But after three years in the military I became enamored of photography and filmmaking.  I received a degree from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara while simultaneously taking classes at the Santa Barbara Art I

Born in London, raised in Los Angeles.

As a child I loved to draw and paint.  Later, in high school, I continued my art education.  But after three years in the military I became enamored of photography and filmmaking.  I received a degree from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara while simultaneously taking classes at the Santa Barbara Art Institute, followed by a long career in the film business, primarily as an editor and occasionally as a director.

A few years ago I decided to return to my first love and began taking watercolor classes with Helen Groenekamp.  Eventually, I discovered acrylic paint and collage.  

I love the freedom and spontaneity of acrylic paint.  The work I am doing now centers on the landscape. Recently, I spent time walking along the seashore and the rolling hills of Sonoma County in northern California, absorbing the quiet beauty, taking reference photos which become paintings in my studio.

I am not interested in photographic reproductions of nature but in the essence of landscapes, sometimes inspired by combining different reference photos or entirely imagined. J.M.W. Turner, Van Gogh and Cezanne all influence my paintings.

Most of my work begins with a vague idea that becomes more fully formed as I paint, creating something new and often quite different from what I had intended.  How this happens is a mystery to me but a mystery that I except wholeheartedly and revel in.


Michael Spence
Mhspence1@roadrunner.com
 

nstitute, followed by a long career in the film business, primarily as an editor and occasionally as a director.

A few years ago I decided to return to my first love and began taking watercolor classes with Helen Groenekamp.  Eventually, I discovered acrylic paint and collage.  

I love the freedom and spontaneity of acrylic paint.  The work I am doing now centers on the landscape. Recently, I spent time walking along the seashore and the rolling hills of Sonoma County in northern California, absorbing the quiet beauty, taking reference photos which become paintings in my studio.

I am not interested in photographic reproductions of nature but in the essence of landscapes, sometimes inspired by combining different reference photos or entirely imagined. J.M.W. Turner, Van Gogh and Cezanne all influence my paintings.

Most of my work begins with a vague idea that becomes more fully formed as I paint, creating something new and often quite different from what I had intended.  How this happens is a mystery to me but a mystery that I except wholeheartedly and revel in.


Michael Spence
Mhspence1@roadrunner.com
 

As a child I loved to draw and paint.  Later, in high school, I continued my art education.  But after three years in the military I became enamored of photography and filmmaking.  I received a degree from Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara while simultaneously taking classes at the Santa Barbara Art Institute, followed by a long career in the film business, primarily as an editor and occasionally as a director.

 

A few years ago I decided to return to my first love and began taking watercolor classes with Helen Groenekamp.  Eventually, I discovered acrylic paint and collage. 

 

I love the freedom and spontaneity of acrylic paint.  The work I am doing now centers on the landscape. Recently, I spent time walking along the seashore and the rolling hills of Sonoma County in northern California, absorbing the quiet beauty, taking reference photos which become paintings in my studio.

 

I am not interested in photographic reproductions of nature but in the essence of landscapes, sometimes inspired by combining different reference photos or entirely imagined. J.M.W. Turner, Van Gogh and Cezanne all influence my paintings.

 

Most of my work begins with a vague idea that becomes more fully formed as I paint, creating something new and often quite different from what I had intended.  How this happens is a mystery to me but a mystery that I except wholeheartedly and revel in.

 

 

Michael Spence

Mhspence1@roadrunner.com

bottom of page