Photo of David Campbell
Photo of David Campbell
David Campbell
Assistant Professor
Faculty of Art
416-977-6000, Ext. 1976

Area(s) of Expertise

Figurative Painting/drawing, Oil Painting


After graduating from the Ontario College of Art in Drawing and Painting in 1972, I spent several years painting from observation, my principle theme being the human figure. Over the years my approach toward my subject became increasingly interpretive as I gradually transformed the figure into a metaphor of life.

I began the interpretive process by painting the human form as an upright column of colour in a series of decorated figures. This evolved into painting the figure as a timeline, changing through time from top to bottom; then as a representation of time past in a series entitled Context; as an allegory of the human condition in a series of drawings; as the embodiment of human emotions in several large-scale paintings and currently, as the personification of human ideas.

In my most recent paintings, ideas created by the mind take the form of invented figures?human-like structures made of complex parts created from my imagination. Innovations of the mind such as mathematics or language appear as living structures, tangible realities in quasi-human form. The figures are constructed in such a way that they allude both to the elegance of the idea and to its potential misuse.

The unique structure of the figures gives me the opportunity to convey in metaphysical terms many of the concepts, emotions and ambitions of human existence.