Refocus – Michelle James

Refocus is about zooming out from the immediate surroundings around oneself and taking on a bird’s-eye view of the landscape. An attempt to gain a new perspective. In doing this, the abstract shapes that become evident in a landscape can take on an almost cellular form with little intricacies, where the previously seemingly big details are almost lost amongst the significantly larger structures of the environment.

The importance of refocusing one’s attention is relevant now more than ever due to climate change. We live in a time of Nature-Society dualism, a concept that needs to be deconstructed as we rely entirely on nature to live.

The notion of changing perspective is created by combination different materials such as acrylics, alcohol inks, mortar, and sand in a way that all the paintings take on organic forms and structures.

The vibrantly coloured paintings are processed based, letting go of considered outcomes throughout the creation. The mixed media dances about the canvas and takes on its own naturally occurring, layered forms, as would happen in nature. When the paint and materials settle and dry, they take on different forms yet again. I then work into these forms to enhance them further.

The depths formed within the layers creates a juxtaposition and almost confusion in the motion of attempting to establish distance but being once again drawn back into the finer details. It entices the viewers curiosity; to come closer and zoom into the paintings to examine the depths of balance and contrast of these landscapes



Hours – 10am-6pm


Michelle is a 24-year-old, UK based painter that recently graduated from the University of Reading with a BA (Hons) in Art and Psychology.

Michelle’s works have been greatly influenced by her travels around countries such as Chile, Israel, Martinique, and many countries in Europe.

During her travels she noted the how nonchalantly we seem to interact with the nature around us, leading to our landscapes and environments are changing and becoming ever more dramatic with climate change, highlighting the care with which we need to treat our planet.

Michelle incorporates her memories of landscapes, forms and colours to offer a new view of our planet, looking in an abstract manner at the intricacies of how landscapes flow and interconnect, forming balance and contrast.