Michael Smith


Michael Smith was born in Derby, England in 1951.

Since 1981 Michael Smith’s paintings have been exhibited across Canada and internationally including, the Appleton Museum, Ocala, Florida, Galerie Damasquine, Brussels, the Saidye Bronfman Centre, Montréal and The Kaohsiung Museum of Fine Arts, Taiwan. His work was also exhibited at the Charles Cowles Gallery, New York.

He completed his MFA from Concordia University, Montréal in 1983. Reviews and essays of Smith’s work have appeared in many journals and art magazines, including ARTnews, MODERN PAINTERS, Canadian Art and Border Crossings. His work was also featured in the Established Artists section of the Magenta Foundation’s 2008 book Carte Blanche v.2 Painting, a survey text on the current state of painting in Canada.

Michael Smith’s work can be found in the permanent collections of The Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal; Tom Thomson Memorial Art Gallery, Owen Sound; The Beaverbrook Art Gallery, Fredericton; The Glenbow Museum, Calgary. Several of his works belong to the prestigious Canadiana Collection and can be found in the Prime Minister’s residence at 24 Sussex, Ottawa; Rideau Hall and the Citadel in Quebec City.

Smith’s contemporary oil paintings of landscapes and seascapes investigate the relationship between image and abstraction, as well as memory and performance. Interested in illusions of illuminated space, Smith explores how light can be both incidental and instrumental to landscape paintings. Using an expressive impasto, he creates a visual language that tells a history of moments where atmospheric conditions have made claims on particular places. Ripped, jagged backgrounds and stormy explosions give way to streams of water, light, and cloud, creating places that are “both exquisite and tremendously disturbing.”

Related Events

A Part of Speech: Michael Smith in Conversation

October 21, 2023 at 2:00pm

See event