Michele England | Art for Earth's Sake

Presented by ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

MICHELE ENGLAND lives and works on Ngunnawal country, in Canberra, the Nation's capital. Michele has a diverse arts practice that includes painting, textiles, printing and object making and assemblage. Michele has had several solo art exhibitions in Canberra and interstate and her work has been selected as a finalist in numerous art prizes. Her work is held in private collections across Australia.

Michele's practice-led research explores painting compositions and techniques as a means of relaying her concerns about the escalating negative impact of entrenched anthropogenic systems on the Earth. Michele juxtaposes the still life painting genre with collage techniques to suggest the causes and impact of the growing crisis. The still life genre is a traditional approach that Michele uses to suggest the domestic interior, a contrived zone of human desire and safety. Michele uses collage to inject terrestrial places of destruction and demise into this zone, suggesting the connection between systemic human activity and environmental degradation. A reflective and reflexive methodology helps Michele to navigate numerous studio investigations and photography and drawing is utilised, in addition to collage, to drive visual compositions. Michele explores various materials and painting techniques and has settled on utilising a mix of paint materiality, craft, and traditional techniques. Flowers are a significant motif for Michele in their legacy regarding transience, global trade, and beauty. Michele's studio investigations resolve in an expanded still life language that discuss the current environmental issues in a novel manner.

Michele is a Higher Degree by Research Candidate and is completing her Master of Philosophy.