Mitchell Fenton was born in Winnipeg. He graduated from Ontario College of Art with a degree in Experimental Arts, an interdisciplinary field, splitting his time between sculpture and painting. After graduating, he completed two major public art sculptures in Toronto, both for Artscape. For the last 16 years, Mitchell has devoted his time to painting. His love of the outdoors and travel has steered his current work.
Artist Statement: Hiking has become an integral part of Fenton's painting process; clearing of the mind, acceleration of the pulse - all in anticipation of stopping to begin a composition, whether it be in small details in the lichen and rocks with wildflowers, or cropped abstract patterns of rocks meeting a lake, or the perfect alignment of a grand vista. Like the figure out of Casper David Friedrich's painting Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog, Fenton ventures out into the sublime realm of nature to experience something only that journey will allow. As Fenton describes "It is not the destination, but the journey, that is more important." Mitchell continues the long legacy of landscape painting in Canadian culture. With his new Play on Painting series, he opens up a dialogue about how technology affects our experience and, ultimately, our journey with the great outdoors. Traditionally, landscape painting was the main way the public could experience these remote vistas throughout history. Now, through the magic of the internet, anyone can find a Go-Pro video of someone hiking through the expanse of the Rockies. These paintings invite the viewer to fill in the missing information: what journey or adventure takes place if they were able to hit play? Fenton has taken a very traditional genre of painting and created an interactive performance. One must use their memories and experiences of nature to participate in the exploration.