About the Artist
Aria Brownell graduated with a BFA in Painting from SUNY Purchase College in New York in 2015. She is a figurative oil painter currently living and working in Austin, Texas. She captures images of intimacy and personal memory that she turns into paintings in which the narrative can evolve and warp throughout each layer of paint. Touching on small instances of contact, mischief, comfort, grief, messiness, and familiarity, she creates a myth behind a cast of painted characters and scenes portrayed in vivid color. Aria is the Social Media Director at Contracommon Gallery in Bee Cave where she is also a studio member. She has shown work in Texas, Connecticut, New York, as well as online for several virtual gallery shows.
I paint about the fragility of memory. My work is an articulation of my desire to reimagine an already written biography. Memory is funny because it lies. The more I try to remember a time, the less I really see. Constantly reworking a memory both in my mind and on canvas completely obliterates the original truth of the time, separating my painting from Fact by miles. Painting in this way allows for acceptance and clarity while digging through a montage of embarrassment, anxiety, depression, playfulness, serenity, and intimacy. I’m a constant voyeur and often it feels like I am an outsider bearing witness to a life that happens to me seemingly without any control. Consequently, I have a habit of overanalyzing memory and moment. Focusing on small details like skin and hair brings me close to my subject while averted gazes and glimpses from afar mimic a feeling of detachment. Each time I work through an image, layer by layer, it’s being ripped from a timeline that will never be perfectly oriented again.