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Alexander Bell Artist | Painter | Photographer Vancouver Canada Logo



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Title: The Rain that Falls in Vancouver, a black and white oil painting by artist Alexander Bell, Painted in Vancouver, Canada 2010
The Rain That Falls. Oil on canvas. 2010.

These are my paintings. I made them for you. A button which calls forth a description of the creative process by Alexander Bell

These are my paintings. I made them for you. I have carefully considered their composition, their line, their movement, their rhythm, the hues and tone, their opacity and transparency . I have tried to balance the jostelating convolutions of painterly jazz brushstrokes with areas for your eyes to rest; places of deep solitude and contemplation. I have considered craftsmanship and artistry; I have weighed the organic and loose against the rigid and mechanical; I have emoted deeply all I have and considered the future and the past and the virtual self and the virtualized self. It is through profound struggle and growth that I have developed tendrils 'tween distant, but curiously related dynamic concepts and compose them into meaningful objects of inspiration and contemplation. It is my entire life that I offer you, all my love, all my lovers, all the awkwardness, all the transcendent moments of clarity, all my ideas and contemplations and innovation, these images are indeed like water taken from my surging, serpentine life force river.


Alexander Bell Painting Slideshow key


Alexander Bell photography gallery key


Peering Into the Machine of Perception

Used ritually, the word “why” may open the mind to answers or slice through the very fabric of existence and purpose. ¬†It is my conclusion after a life of seeking the nature, purpose, or meaning of my existence; that we float in an expansive, indifferent ocean of blackness. The search our own meaning is an artifact of the evolution of our own consciousness. Our perception entails that when we see objects we give them meaning. Having the ability to be aware of ourselves allows us to pull the concept of “I” into the symbolic language of our minds. In the landscape of the mind, the thought that “I” have a meaning, the same way a tree has a meaning to me, is simply based on incorrect assumptions. That being said, when I examine my own creative impulse, it is evident that those impulses, and everything come from nothingness. I see that the nature of the nothingness is unlimited potential.

The context for meaning then is within my own psyche and perceptions. It is from the examination of the machine of my perception that I extract my own visual language: the gestural brushwork is used to represent fluid, sloshing emotion, solid printed forms are used to represent the realm of the senses and stimulus, and the open mesh of text is employed to represent the symbolic layer that the mind organises the world into.

My images are presented as series of similar images, each slightly different than the others: the way the mind copies the world into memory, and then we further replicate that memory imperfectly through imitation.  Through the use of screen printing I create visual repetition, and through the use of loose brushwork I generate differentiation. The subjects I represent in my images are usually local and familiar. They are people, places or objects with which I have developed a relationship, and have a sense of responsibility to record them, as they are being lost to time and are being forgotten.


I was born in 1979 to Micheline Bell and Dr. George Bell, a doctor who was born in Manitoba, Canada and attended Harvard Medical School. I grew up nomadically moving between places such as California, Oregon, Vancouver, Canada, Perth and Brisbane, Australia and Berlin and Paris. I continue to embrace the nomadic spirit in spite of putting down permanent roots in Vancouver, Canada, and have recently traveled through China, Taiwan, South-East Asia, Eastern Europe, Middle East, Pakistan, India and the Eastern United States. Exposure to all of these places continues to inform my work and give it greater context.

I have been creative my entire life and have been supported in this capacity by my loving family and friends. From a very young age I have been drawn to the visual arts. I received my first set of oil paints and an easel from 11th birthday. Throughout my life I have always found excellent mentors and teachers from my High school teacher Mr. Sandvoss to my inspired mentors at Vancouver Academy of Art.

I maintain a studio at the Downtown Eastside Artist Studio at 112 East Hastings St, studio #50.

Technique and Craftsmanship

It has always been my stance that artwork should, regardless of the subject or the medium, attempt to achieve the highest level of craftsmanship and should innovate with technique. My images are always created using the highest quality materials available to me, to ensure brilliance and archival quality. One example of this is my choice of only the finest oil pigments such as paints developed by Robert Gamlin in Oregon, who developed pigments for the Tate, the Smithsonian and the US National Gallery. It is also a consideration of the highest order that the materials I use are ecologically responsible, sustainable; whether it's using cradled panels made from the fast growing Paulownia tree, or using a paint trap on my wash up sink to reduce water contaminants. It is my intention to produce artwork made in the most mindful way; right from the way I live my life, the support, the ground, the pigments to the final varnish on my paintings.

Curriculum Vitae

1996 Graduated with International Baccalaureate Fine Arts

1995-1996 Worked as a set designer/audio engineered and floor manager for Mestiza a public access cable show for Shaw Cable.

1997 Vancouver Film 3d Animation

1998-2003 Vancouver Academy of Art

Studied under Michael Britton, Thomas Anfield, Paul Chizik and Ari Tomita.

2002 Founded the memelab, a cultural workspace/gallery and experimentation ground, with Olo J. Milkman which was later handed off to Jesse Scott.

2007 Founded the Lost and Foundry at Union St. in Vancouver which was a creative/workspace/exhibition space.

2009 Opened personal studio at the Downtown Eastside Artists Studios

2009-2011 Founded Labyrinth Artist Society and Labyrinth Art Gallery


Currently the majority of my work is not signed in the front surface, but may be signed on the back and have a series of intentionally made fingerprints on the sides or on the back.


I try to live a compassionate life, that is concious of my neighbour in a way that is balanced with my own goals and desires. I try to increase happiness and reduce suffering but don't choose happiness if it means denying our suffering. I try to promote harmony, but I strive to have the courage not to avoid conflict when appropriate. I try to be present and aware of my surroundings but not permanently lost in the moment; not forgetting the path I have travelled or my bearing in the future. It is my wish to share fun and play with those around me. I try to promote the open lateral thinking of play. I try to encourage beauty, and create beauty, but be broad with my definition of it. I try to explore and tirelessly seek without prejudice while enthusiastically growing my roots into fertile soil I have explored. It is my intention to be open to the answers I recieve, even if they do not concur with my hypotheses.

Contact information:

Alexander Bell


Ph: 604.999.3619

DEA Studios

#50 - 112 E. Hastings Vancouver, B.C.


(Next to the Gam Gallery on Hastings St.)

Mailing Address:

2124 Franklin St. Vancouver B.C.




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