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Northrup King Building

1500 Jackson Street Northeast
Minneapolis, MN
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I received my artistic training at Yale College and at California College of Art.  I was taught in the figurative tradition, but I also work rather abstractly, and I don’t always have a theme I want to put forth.  I don’t know how I will finish when I start, except there is something within I want to express, something I want to build, something I have to say.  Painting is not the same as speech, even when it depicts a scene.   We leap to story, but it is the story behind the story, behind speech, that is as much my subject matter.

My work is about longing, time, emotion, loss and recovery.  I keep these in mind:

From the contemporary American poet Mary Oliver:

“Attention is the beginning of devotion.”

And from the German romantic poet Holderlin:

“Where danger lies, there deliverance also grows.”

These help me understand the process better, where the painting begins to reveal itself.  I was trained to paint daily, and I do so, although much of creation lies in wait for the artist. Conversely, the artist himself must wait for something to happen.  Stillness is as important as action.

On my good days I am a painter.  On my best moments, I am someone who is trying to uncover and describe something new, so that we can have it within our range of humanity. That should be enough.

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Owen Brown takes commissions.

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