Introducing artist Hannah Campion, who specialises in making paintings, sculptures, drawings and installations, with a love for working with children and young people to help them realise their potential.
Her inspiration comes from underwater environments and fluidity as a swimmer, scuba diver, free diver and her love of taking underwater photographs. Hannah’s work has been featured in the Guardian, The Telegraph, How to Spend it Magazine (Financial Times), Wall Street International Magazine and Hunger TV.
Hannah exhibited in London, Los Angeles, Berlin, New York, Singapore, Sweden and Kuala Lumpur and her work is in collections in the UK and overseas, including Chelsea Collections, Smurfit, Charnwood Borough Council, as well as many private collections in the UK, USA, Australia and worldwide.
Here we share her story so far..
Can you tell us your backstory and how you got into the art world?
I started painting on pieces of wood from my Dad, which as a small child I absolutely loved, especially the chunkiness and objecthood of painting around edges. I also told my mum I was going to be an artist in junior school but forgot all about it. Then, somehow I wiggled my way back round to colour, painting and fluidity through swimming, scuba and later free diving.
I loved studying at Loughborough for my Fine Art Painting BA, it was an absolute dream to study painting and paint all day every day. Swimming featured, too, although at that point I discovered going on nights out and had lots of fun. I had a mild panic about what to do after uni, but luckily I had a London exhibition on Park Lane with my art dealer Henrietta Cartwright, so I ploughed my energies and ambition into that.
Afterwards I had a wonderful artist residency with Vane Gallery in Newcastle in 2012, and whilst there I made an application for a place on the MA Fine Art at Chelsea School of Art, where I was awarded a scholarship.
What influences your work?
I wrote this poem for Equinox Light Cure, curated by Sasha Burkhanova in 2019, to express inspiration and influence on my work and to capture the feeling.
Fists of froth.
Air is tumbling.
Bask against blue.
Glimmer of sunlight.
Cool blue fluoresces.
Hair free gravity.
I paint colourful calming underwater magical landscapes. I once did this fabulous commission in Super Cannes in France where I was chauffeur-driven through a sea of Bentleys and Austin Martins to a beautiful hill top mansion with tennis courts and a swimming pool. I made two huge aluminium paintings, shimmering with underwater hazes, liquid lacquered surfaces to feature above a beautiful stairwell. A dream commission for sure. I love seeing my artworks in my collector’s homes. It’s a special feeling to know I’ve made a painting that people want to live with.
How would you describe your signature style and technique?
I create colourfully fluid paintings where fluorescent colour floods surfaces, sculpted objects carved from hue saturated paintings and artwork that hovers from ceilings. Snapshots of sediment, brushed and sprayed, make picture planes shimmer and shift. The synthetic pop of a Bermuda shorts palette is diffused with Santa Monica sunsets and brushstrokes dripping in rainbows.
I’m a painter making colourful and calming artwork and on canvas, paper, aluminium and the structure of buildings. I make drawings, sculptures, installations, videos and paintings, but to me they are all paintings.
My short videos shared on social media are performative paintings and I love the challenge of making artwork in a brief period of time. This new short, sharp, small scale work started for me during several hospital stays in 2019 whilst pregnant. It helped relieve pain and became meditative. I used highlighters, fine liners, a clipboard and pencils, together with some existing artworks and backgrounds from Chloe Briggs workshop commissioned by Esen Kaya at Drawing North East.
This paved the way to some interesting opportunities to make different work and a few surprises, including becoming a Stabilo Influencer on Tiktok and Instagram.
Are there any exhibitions or events you are planning?
I’m calling for young people interested in drawing and creativity to cultivate strong healthy minds. As an artist, art teacher and swim coach with 20+ years of experience working with children and young people, I am perfectly placed to translate this into a safe creative space online. Let’s make social media special and creatively life changing.
If interested, please send me a note via my website or join me on TikTok or IG @hannahcampionartist.
Ooh and exciting projects are afoot with my co-conspirator Kev Howard in Howard Hannah. We create magical films for special events. Check us out on Instagram @howardhannahcollective.
Also, magical films, colour popping paintings, collaborations, drawings and some fab opportunities are coming up with ArtCan too.
I’m loving the immediacy of working with drawing and video. Bright colours and quick working. Currently I’m working on a beautiful commissioned piece for a musician, which I’m delighted to make.
What is the best advice you received as an artist?
Stop, Collaborate and Listen – it’s Vanilla Ice – but I feel it’s rife for life too. Some of my most exciting work has come about through a connection, collaboration or conversation – listening to others talk about their lives, loves and creative passions. One doesn’t have to be an artist to be creative – some of our greatest thinkers are scientists, psychologists, teachers and entrepreneurs.
In my case, 10 years later I got that coveted place at Chelsea School of Art. Things slotted into place artistically, mentally and metaphorically. Timing is everything and the time I had at Vane was integral to this success. Stick with it, I am philosophical; if it’s meant to be it will be.
For more information about Hannah Campion’s work or to commission her work please visit hannahcampion.com
Cover photo credit: Hannah Campion in The Rainbow Room installation featuring Blue Sky Pool in the background
Photo credit: Kev Howard
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