In this unprecedented time of uncertainty, we all face new challenges that test our patience, dreams, and faith. For those who look for it, there is always a silver lining. My silver lining has been more time to work in the studio with fewer pressures and greater opportunity for more thoughtfulness."
JUROR'S CHOICE AWARD, Quinte Arts Council | 2021
2 HONOURABLE MENTIONS, Greater Napanee and Area Arts Association | 2021
OUTSTANDING ABSTRACT, Belleville Art Association | 2017
BELLEVILLE MAYOR’S CHOICE AWARD, National Air Force Museum of Canada | 2016
L&A Museum solo, “Resonance” | 2016
McMichael Canadian Art Collection Autumn Art Sale 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2021 (Online)
John M. Parrott Gallery 2016 | 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020 | 2021 (Online)
Greater Napanee and Area Arts Association 2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2021
PEC Studio Tour 2018 | 2019 | 2021 | 2022
Buckhorn Festival of the Arts | 2021 (online) | 2022
Quinte Arts Council, Expressions | 2021 | 2022
L&A Studio Tour | 2022
Selected Group Shows & Art Fairs
One of a Kind Spring Show | 2019
One of a Kind Winter Show | 2019 | 2020 (online) | 2021
Rosedale Art Fair |2018 | 2019 | 2022 | 2023
Buckhorn Festival of the Arts | 2022
Juniper Island Art Festival | 2021 (online)
L&A Hospital |2017 | 2018
L&A Library |2017 | 2018 | 2019 | 2020
Art at the Lake |2016 | 2017 | 2021 | 2022
Art Among the Ruins |2017 | 2018 | 2019
Schomberg Street Gallery | 2022
"I draw inspiration from the exquisite natural beauty of the Ontario rural landscape surrounding my studio. I use a vibrant color palette to showcase nature motifs creating artworks that embody vitality, energy, and spontaneity, all while resonating with the heart and soul. Layered with fluidity and rich colour, I tell stories of the mystery and joyfulness found in nature, reflective of my own spiritual journey.”
Michelle is a self-taught artist who came by her love for art from her mother, Rene O’Connor and her sister, Danielle O'Connor Akiyama.
Painting from an emotional response to nature, Michelle's whimsical abstract florals speaks to what is and what might be. Michelle's work is often rooted in themes of grief, acceptance, and opportunity, enveloped in optimism.
Layer after layer of paint is patiently applied to the substrate in a rich tapestry of colour, form, and line. Working confidently and boldly, Michelle is expressive in storytelling adding mixed media elements of oil crayons in the final stages that compel the viewer to look more closely at the piece.