tim van campen: an architect’s artist

It’s one of life’s mysteries how in some families certain talents pass from one generation to the next, while in others the offspring are woefully inept compared to mom or dad. The Van Campen family is one of those lucky clans where both parents are artists and the two apples (Molly and Greta, as it were) didn’t fall far from the tree, whose patriarch is Tim Van Campen.

Tim Van Cempen rug | Maine artist

A beautiful example of one one design, in one medium, Maine artist Tim Van Campen has mastered

I’ve talked about Greta before — and I’ll do it again, and her madre will get some air time before too long as well — but today is about Papa Bear. Tim Van Campen’s work spans decades of design across hand-knotted rugs, textiles, lamp shades, furniture, needlepoint, and a range of other media I’m failing to mention. Aesthetic and content aside, I love seeing the diversity of Van Campen’s work over the years; we all grow and change, moving this way and that way as we navigate life, but so few of us have a tangible body of personal work to serve as a vivid and tactile breadcrumb trail. Not exactly analagous to my stockpile of emails and PowerPoint slides….

Tim Van Campen’s work leans heavily on geometry – I can see those with formal design training loving it. It clearly references different Asian cultures (but I also keep thinking it’s got a haute Flintstone thing going on, too, which I know sounds weird but is meant to be a compliment).

Tim Van Campen | Maine artist

A Tim Van Campen lampshade, perhaps with African influences?

I believe a society6 (if you don’t know this site you should e-run, not walk, to check it out) store is also in the works, where you can purchase his designs plastered all over tote bags, mugs, canvas prints, and more to your heart’s content.

Anyway, I’m on the train to NYC! Likely more to come on that soon. I’ve got a bunch of cliches about how I feel about heading there running through my head so at the risk of making you roll your eyes at my poor word choices, I’ll leave my thoughts to your imagination.


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