Camilla Webster is widely exhibited fine artist, best-selling author, TED speaker and lecturer, Webster’s painting “Cocktail Hour” inspired by Palm Beach’s evening light and energy was acquired by The Coral Springs Museum of Art in the fall of 2019. Webster will have her first solo museum show curated by White House fellow and world renowned artist Bruce Helander in May – June 2020.
“The artist’s most memorable and ingenious compositions possess a certain mystifying spirituality placed between the painterly lines that often seem dreamlike in an elusive abstract recreation of a special moment in time that’s worth documenting” writes Helander. “Webster has an innate ability to install invisible emotional gestures that seem to float and seductively recede like the tide into provocative abstract arrangements.”
Comparing his experience of visiting the work to that of his visits to Olitsky, Poons and Zakanitch in the 1980s. “Camilla Webster has developed a new body of work that strongly suggests she has joined a distinguished professional fraternity of the next generation of talented artists inspired by the Florida Keys.”
Webster was invited to exhibit in 2020 at Art Palm Beach and lectured on essence in the PowerTalks Art Palm Beach programming. In 2019 Webster exhibited at Art Basel Miami Beach at Scope and lectured at The Sagamore Hotel on social impact and healing through art.
The Directed Art Modern has exhibited her series at Art Palm Beach, Art Aspen, and Jackson Hole Fine Art Fair. Her paintings focused on rising oceans were selected for The Palm Beach Cultural Council’s “Natural Narratives” exhibit which runs through May 2020. Coverage of Webster’s work and exhibits have appeared in the Miami Herald over Art Basel, her Keys Kintsugi series was the featured article on the front page of Florida Weekly. She’s also been featured in the Palm Beach Daily News, the Palm Beach Post and Yahoo.
Capturing the attention of the Miami art scene upon her arrival, Webster was given a solo show during Art Basel Miami week at The Edition Hotel sponsored by Sotheby’s ONE. Her work was then chosen by interior designer Elizabeth Ghia for “The Grand Salon” in the Miami Designer Show House at The Deering Estate last April. In the summer of 2018, her portraits and abstracts were part of “The Power of Her” exhibit curated by art patron and expert Tanya Brillembourg at IdeoBox in Wynwood, Miami. Mercedes Benz celebrated Webster’s work during Miami Art Week in 2018 with a special installation exhibit curated by Jill Deupi, director of The Lowe Art Museum.
Her TEDx talk “Art in Front of You” which focuses on the art of calming down has garnered thousands of views. Predominantly self- taught, Webster studied color field abstraction under Pat Lipsky at The Art Students League, New York in 2013 and at The Slade School of Fine Art, London in the summer of 2014 and went on to spend the winter of 2014 to summer 2015 in the studio at Mana Contemporary in Jersey City. Mana Contemporary’s Vice President Shai Baitel says: “Camilla Webster has a message she delivers beautifully through color, line and form. Without a doubt her work will continue to gain attention in contemporary art circles, and draw an ever growing distinguished audience of collectors, gallerists and curators.”
Webster obtained her Joint Honours MA and BA in Modern History and History of Art from the University of St. Andrews, Scotland in 1995. Since 2013 Webster has exhibited in galleries and given art talks by special invitation in Miami, London, Paris and New York. Since 2010, Webster has lived and worked between Palm Beach. Miami, New York and the UK. She is a board member of The Clark Hulings Fund, and on the junior acquisitions council for The Norton Museum of Art. Webster currently maintains a studio and home in Palm Beach, Florida and spends time at Ocean Reef with her family.
Now in the 21st century, we find ourselves in the midst of profound and fast social changes. Webster’s newest body of work is influenced by her family’s century-old great love of South Florida’s oceans and environment, and there is an element of healing as its central theme.
Webster’s acrylic on canvas paintings use color, energy, and movement to remind us that we are one with the element of water and that we need it to grow, to heal, to cleanse and to renew. “We are all water, we share global waters and the water in the paintings is also a reflection of our emotional wellbeing”, she says. The intention of this work is to bring a sense of solitude and tranquility to all who view it.
By using materials like gold and ultramarine (ground Lapis Lazuli from Afghanistan) – materials which were once reserved only for royal and religious figures in paintings and murals of the Renaissance, Webster invites us to experience the ocean, dusk, sea grapes, the clouds as spiritual, priceless and precious. Webster explores our relationship to the environment by tying it into memory, consciousness, love and desire through color.
In “Keys Kintsugi” (year), is a Japanese-inspired body of work with splashes of gold meandering through each painting. In Kintsugi pottery, imperfections and cracks are accentuated and celebrated with a gold overlay allowing the flaws themselves to shine through suggesting that there is new beauty and increased value not only in the cracks of pottery, but in the cracks of life itself. This work was inspired by a time of loss and renewal in the artist’s own life, but also by the devastation and recovery of a community after Hurricane Irma. Webster’s message is to declare that life is always beautiful even in the realms of great tragedy and that art has the power to heal. From October to December, Webster’s complete Keys Kintsugi collection will be exhibited in Islamorada at Ocean Sotheby’s Roberto Russell Gallery.
The Flower Power series portrays the rise of women in power with the artist showing them in a different light, “one woman, one flower, one power at a time”.
In each painting and in each collection, essentials of Webster’s own colorful life are apparent—her cultural experiences adding to the depth of her creations. Amongst her accolades are award-winning author, T.V. analyst, influencer and adventurer. Her philosophy is that “art has the ability to grab our attention, to emanate the human condition.” Indeed, her work as a war correspondent in the Middle East moved her to highlight the perils of war by painting War Soul, and her passion for politics inspired her to create Stars and Stripes reflecting the turbulence of the year in politics in 2018. In addition to drawing attention to social and political issues such as conflict, immigration and addiction, she uses her platform and her talents to give back to her South Florida community; she advocates for the care of the world’s oceans and she donates proceeds from selected works to support the needs of local cancer patients and their families.
Webster paints from the heart and her artwork not only depicts her passion and sensitivity but also her desire to educate. She is a teacher. She is an artist. She is a healer inviting you to decelerate and find peace and hope in her work. As she says in her Ted Talk, Art in Front of You, “look up, look down and all around and let art change your life”. And she speaks from experience.