Born in Ontario and raised in Vancouver, Christine Breakell-Lee is a Canadian abstract artist who explores her intuitive relationship with colour and space as a means of evidencing private emotions and memories. Breakell-Lee studied Visual Arts and Art History at Simon Fraser University where she pursued installation art projects, sculpture and painting. Following graduation, she worked as a commercial illustrator and within the interior design community before beginning her current art practice.
In the expressive manner of Lyrical Abstraction, Breakell-Lee creates works that serve as visual explorations of her moods and curiosities over the course of a single day as if a colourful diary of private dramas. Breakell-Lee mostly avoids using brushes preferring to apply her material – acrylic paint, spray paint, oil paint, pastels and charcoal – with her hands and fingers creating a direct immediacy with each piece. Her approach is intuitive and unquestioning, allowing time for reflection but not doubt. Breakell-Lee is intrigued by the dichotomous struggle in her work as a mirror to the various sides of her identity – calm and vibrant, introspective and impulsive, grounded and ethereal. In the sensuous interplay between vast expanses and tattered patches of colour – as colours tangle with, cover over and move beyond other colours – Breakell-Lee is telling her own story of struggle and liberty. By leaving parts of the wood surface exposed so the raw element of the grain shows through, a further note of authenticity and material truth is recognized. Breakell-Lee’s work is open, vital and compelling.
Christine Breakell-Lee lives in Vancouver and maintains a full time studio practice in the historic 1000 Parker Building in the city’s eastside arts district.