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Meet Michelle Stone of Michellestoneart.com in Ravenswood

Today we’d like to introduce you to Michelle Stone.

Michelle, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
As a kid I lived in an experimental artist’s commune which consisted of live-work spaces, shared studio storefronts and apartments, with my biological parents, and their extended family of friends, wild characters, and multiple partners. It was a human zoo of hilarity- parties every night, impromptu performances, freaks, and flying ideas. “Home” was a revolving door-with wide open entry to curious, courageous individuals, and shapes my creative vision today.

While the imaginative, and magnetic atmosphere fostered independence and was liberating, it was simultaneously confusing. Although it was an illuminating, entertaining childhood, I had no guiding direction into adulthood. I was a hippie teenager with few boundaries; I was an irresponsible student, and I was lost after high school. I had no plan. There were dark holes in my future.

After travelling, wandering, finding meaningful relationships with artists and musicians, I felt a sense of urgency to find my own purpose on this earth.

So I enrolled in a drawing class and fell in love! Finally realizing what I wanted to dedicate my life to, and what I was capable of investigating indefinitely, was a relief. Feeling gratitude, I was thrilled to work hard and educate myself. I knew my path as an artist was just in formation.

So many years later, my heart, mind, and soul continue to be immersed in the process.

Has it been a smooth road?
As a working artist almost nothing is smooth. Art-making is textured, a mysterious evolution, at times a conflict, or a metamorphosis. I must have a blind trust that my composite of experiences and skills align each day in
my workspace. It took time to conquer my academic blocks, but I eventually did and received an undergraduate degree from SAIC. I knew I needed a fundamental sturdiness if I was ever to expand and create compelling work. I did not have natural abilities and was insecure. It required years to fill the voids in my background knowledge of art history, contemporary art, studio practice, and how to observe, describe and participate. I believed then and still do, that art is a life-long learning process. Only by mastering painting and drawing skills, and by gaining knowledge about methods and materials could I acquire confidence, competency and proficiency. Then my range of choices, imagination and intuition had been set free.

I always knew what I wanted to express and generate in respect to content. I am fascinated by our human condition, relationships and our connection to nature’s creatures and things. Humanity! How to make art out of my worldview remains an uphill battle. But I cherish the journey

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the michellestoneart.com story. Tell us more about the business.
I am a visual artist. I create sculptures, installations, paintings, and portraits. My sculpture materials range from natural or plastic detritus, fragments of recycled discarded pieces of art, to clumps of acrylic paint, wood, and craft products. I cover the skeletal beginning using acrylic paint, gel, and plaster to create a textured, colored painted facade. These hybrid forms take the shape of identifiable and amorphous creatures, or scraps from the natural world; these structures may exist in isolation or can be arranged in groups. My vision is of a menagerie of objects in diverse sizes or shapes, rising or descending up a wall or sprawling across a floor or platform.

The paintings are painted on paper or drafting film, with acrylic and house paint. I pour, wipe, or brush on the paper and find shapes and spaces that develop into abstract narratives, or shadow figures. Ultimately, my subject is the human condition, human’s relationship to nature, and the process of growth transformation and finally decay.

How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
The art business is constantly rearranging and reinventing, to adjust to the time period, culture and unstable possibilities of the future. So as artists, we must adjust too. Nonetheless, I believe in the hunt for personal truth and vision. I don’t think we need more stuff, we need more imaginative ideas and creative thinking as we straddle challenging, multiple micro, macro realities. Artists need courage, self -discipline, and perseverance in order to keep making art. We must plow through the contradictions, dark times, and fluctuating life circumstances, and remember that our attitude is what we can control. The artist is capable of utilizing mystery, mutability, contradiction and enigma to invent something that enlightens or challenges the viewer. We must adapt.

Contact Info:

  • Address: Cornelia Arts Building 1800 W Cornelia Chicago 60657
  • Website: www.michellestoneart.com
  • Email: menots4@gmail.com
  • Instagram: michellestoneart
  • Facebook: michellestoneart


Image Credit:
Doug Birkenheuer

Getting in touch: VoyageChicago is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

4 Comments

  1. Jim Powers

    August 31, 2018 at 10:46 pm

    My cousin Jim Powers is an entrepreneur in both music & rum.

  2. Joyce Ellen Weinstein

    August 31, 2018 at 10:53 pm

    This is a wonderful article about a very talented woman. It is very inspiring and the photos of her work are great. I am a big fan.

  3. Michele Di Falco

    September 1, 2018 at 12:17 am

    Congratulations Michelle!!! I thoroughly enjoyed reading the article about you. What an amazing life. Some real life lessons you have shared. You are a great Artist with an interesting story to tell. Lots of love, Michele

  4. Ina Schneiderman

    September 7, 2018 at 9:54 pm

    Loved reading about your journey and wanted to compliment you on your incredible art. It doesn’t matter how long the road to discover where and who you are in the world. It’s been a well traveled learning journey leading to successes.

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