Brooke McGowen

Brooke McGowen

Biography

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Born in Chicago in 1953, her parents students at the University of Chicago, Brooke early decided to become an artist. She studied painting at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago then changed her focus and studied Physics. Her love of Physics continues to this day where she applies the effects of Fluid Dynamics in her painting.

In 1972  she went to Vienna, Austria, where she attended the Art Academy. In Vienna she came into contact with Viennese Actionism. She lived in Munich for several years and then moved to Portugal in 1996.

In 2008 she moved to New York where she worked with street artists under the name “Sprezanne”.

In 2009 she founded Radical Art Initiative, a collaboration between street artists and street theater to create visuals for social and environmental actions in New York City. She worked with 350.org and other organizations with actions such as drawing the 2100 high water line on the sidewalk of Lower Manhattan with blue paint.

Being in numerous group shows in Brooklyn and the Lower East Side gave her the chance to exchange ideas with other artists and reinforced her certainty that the new direction in painting requires the unification of abstraction and figuration.

In 2011 she moved to Peekskill, just north of New York City. Here she was able to perfect her signature method of  squirting paint directly from plastic bottles onto the canvas and then gently tilting it at an angle. This method allows the paint to swirl at will. Color elements combine to suggest a figurative situation.

In 2017 she published an art book, “The Waterdrinkers”, funded through Kickstarter.

In 2018 she moved to a remote area of Northern California. 

She participated in residencies at the M.David Gallery in Brooklyn in 2019 and at the 18th St. Art Center in Los Angeles in 2022.

She had a solo booth at the SPRING/BREAK Art Show in New York in 2022 and in Los Angeles in 2022 and 2023.