Creative Elements & Michael Bell-Smith

Launch and Reception
June 22, 2013

We’re pleased to launch two recent titles from artist Michael Bell-Smith. Modeled after the black and white clip art books used by pre-digital graphic designers and commercial artists, ‘Creative Elements’ is a selection of Michael Bell-Smith’s personal clip art collection, categorized, stripped of color, and arranged in flat, style-free compositions. Printed by Publication Studio, Portland, OR.

‘Michael Bell-Smith’ was published by the Institute of Contemporary Art @ Maine College of Art in conjunction with the exhibition: Michael Bell-Smith, which took place from January 25 – April 8, 2012. The book includes texts by Michael Bell-Smith, Lauren Cornell and Daniel FullerDesign and typeset by Anthony Smyrski of Smyrski Creative, Philadelphia, PA.

Michael Bell-Smith and Daniel Fuller (MECA and Publications Studio) will give a short introduction to the publications.

Michael Bell-Smith (East Corinth, ME, 1978) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He holds a BA in Semiotics from Brown University, Providence, RI; and an MFA from Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, NY.

Michael Bell-Smith takes familiar visual elements – from games, advertising, interiors, and corporate design, among other places – and positions them within unexpected conceptual frameworks. His digital animations and appropriations wryly reflect upon our cultural moment: as he tracks the circulation and proliferation of images and sounds, he charts a rapidly changing history of viral content. He mixes flatness with deep perspectives, and motion and stillness, in dynamic meditations on the image’s hold on truth.