Cary Brown

  • Selected Works

    Cary Brown. Fireflies, 2016.
    Watercolor on paper, 14 x 11″

    Cary Brown. Summer Day, 2016.
    Watercolor on paper, 12 x 12″

    Cary Brown. Spring Moon with Razorbill, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 10 x 8″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Hen (Amsterdam Ballon Blower) at Dawn, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 8″ x 10″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Scarlet Tanager in a Cherry Tree, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 18 x 11″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Bluebird, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 10 x 8″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Chimney Swift, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 8 x 10″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Morning Dove, 2014.
    Acrylic on paper, 8 x 10″. Sold

    Cary Brown. Warm Day with Morning Dove, 2014.
    Colored pencil on paper, 8 x 10″. Sold


    The Birds Sang Light and Other Messages of Wonder (a traveling show)
    -Martha Jefferson Hospital (Charlottesville, VA) March 20 – May 9, 2008
    -National Institutes of Health (Bethesda, MD) July 4 – August 8, 2008
    -Washington Cancer Institute (DC) September 4 – November 4, 2008
    (Lillian Fitzgerald, curator)

    Cary Brown, The Swift, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″
    SOLD

    Artist Statement
    Cary Brown
    The Birds Sang Light and Other Messages of Wonder (a traveling show)
    2008

        I was lucky to grow up on a farm in Kentucky where I was free to explore nature at my whim. Whether I was climbing beech trees, scaling fossil beds, searching for turtles, gazing at the constellations, my head was always filled with the magic of nature.
    I began to draw at an early age with one of my grandmothers (also a painter), who is a naturalist so our subjects were often things from the woods and on the farm: giant poplars, horses, donkeys, flowers, leaves, clouds, and so on. She taught me that there was color in a shadow. Sometimes, I looked so hard I thought I could see wind.
    After graduating in1984 from the University of Virginia with a BA in art history and studio art, I moved to New York City to study portrait painting at the New York Academy of Art. During that time, I desperately missed the country so I began painting made-up landscapes in my studio. When my husband and I moved to Charlottesville in 1993, I was delighted to return to nature. The glimmering light and enchanting spirit of Charlottesville, especially in the Spring, once again captivated me and I began to paint en plein air in the style of my professor, Richard Crozier. My mediums were pretty much oils and the occasional watercolors.
    After a life-threatening experience in 2005 involving cancer of the appendix, I moved inward. I felt a need to take a closer look — a need to really feel and see life and death. Instead of painting vast landscapes, I pushed into it. I began to read a lot of poetry. My appetite grew for that big question: What is this all about? What is reality all about? What’s going on above us, below us, on the surface of an orchid, in the heart of a woodpile, in the mind of a bird?
    So began my journey with this new work. Having studied photography at U.Va, I was drawn to the medium again when contemplating reality. The Polaroid emulsion process (explained in detail below) was a perfect match: it enhanced the ephemeral qualities, the elements of surprise and humor in nature. It allowed me to create wind and to be able to bend wallpaper, which seemed then to take on layers of reality infused with the strangeness of poetry that help things meet in that middle area of chaos and order, where truth — perhaps — hovers. I yearned to freeze all of that so I could study it. Of course, gradually the work began to take on a life of its own.
    Through the process I began to consider the spirit in these objects — the light, the love, the energy, the beauty, the magic– in essence, the truth. I began by rolling out the Polaroid image(s) on paper. Then I’d sit back and let the piece speak to me. A story evolved: I would see it, hear it, and then go in with color, form, and sometimes words and bring the piece alive.
    After this I began to comprehend Emerson, Eiseley, and Dillard, all authors whose words were meaningful to me. I followed their assertion to really, really look and be a conscious witness. In this way so much more will be given to you.
    I kept exploring and came to the woodpile of an old ash tree we had to cut down on our farm. Here I mourn her in two pieces. In the last image, The Moo Piece, I saw through a child’s eyes, where the innocence is, real intuition. I began to think of dreams, time travel, and the cosmos, then returned to my pot of boiling elements: wind and clouds bubbling in water, along with wood piles, donkeys, cows, flowers, birds, land, dust, and the laws of nature. I began to laugh, and it was then I knew I had been restored — my soul had been fed and magically returned to its great capacity for joy.

    Polaroid Emulsion Lift Process
    For these prints I used a Daylab printer to shoot my art work (a photograph or painting) on to 669 peel-apart Polaroid film. After the print dries for 8 hours, it is then boiled in distilled water for 3-4 minutes until the image begins to separate from its backing. The print is then transferred to a tray of cold water where the image is carefully rubbed off of its backing. What is left is a sort of jelly-fish floating in the tray- a gooey emulsion version of the print. This image is then manipulated onto a Mylar sheet and delicately transferred onto wet water color paper (or receptor of choice), where it is rolled out with a wet brayer and left to dry. The final piece can be sprayed with UV protective coating such as Krylon UV-Resistant Clear.

    Cary Brown, Moon’s Silver Clouds, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, and gouache on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, Isabella Beach, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, Laughing Orchid, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Tic-Toc Tears, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, The Birds Sang Light, 2008
    polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, colored pencil, and conté crayon on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, The Moo Piece , 2007
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Your Fan-shaped Feet, 2007
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, The Owl Blinked and the Woodpile Began to Fly, 2007
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, Amarylis I, 2007
    polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, and pencil on paper
    12 x 12″
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Are We There Yet?, 2007
    polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    12 x 12″

    Cary Brown, Elegy for the Ash
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper

    Cary Brown, Requiem
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper

    Cary Brown, Moon Bird
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, The Cooling Hour
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper

    Cary Brown, Amaryllis II
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and watercolor on paper
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Her Armor was the Galaxy
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, and colored pencil on paper
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Bowl O’ Cherries
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, and gouache on paper
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Sycamore
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and acyrlic on board
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Ranunculus in Black
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and acrylic on board

    Cary Brown, She Knew a Silver Dawn
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and acyrlic on wood

    Cary Brown, I Swallow Your Blackness Whole
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift and acrylic on wood

    Cary Brown, The Little Boy Liked to Pull the Night in through the Window and Stuff It in the Closet
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift, acyrlic, and pen on wood
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, The Owl’s Eyes Held the Circles
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, and pencil on paper

    Cary Brown, On A Clear Day
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift, watercolor, gouache, and pen on paper
    SOLD

    Cary Brown, Study for Wind
    2007, polaroid emulsion lift on paper
    SOLD


    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Untitled, 2001
    Acrylic on board
    SOLD

    Still Life with Lemons, 2001
    Acrylic on canvas
    SOLD

  • Past Exhibitions

     

    2016   Summer Light, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2014   Visions of Spring, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2006   Celebrating Women in the Arts  & Women’s History Month, FOCUS Women’s Resource Center in cooperation with Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2004   Small Treasures, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    The H’Art Show, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2001   IX Artists,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2000   Hindsite Fore-site: Painting in the year 2000,  Les Yeux duMonde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1999   Moving into the Millennuim: Darkness,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1998   Moving into the Millennium: Lightness, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1997   Summer Show,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1996   Summer Solstice Show, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

     

  • Biography

    Artist portfolio

    Education

    Cary Brown received her B.A. from the University of Virginia in 1984, where she studied art under well-known professors Richard Crozier and Philip Geiger.
    She received her A.A.S. degree from Parson’s School of Design in New York in 1987 and also studied at the Art Students League and the New York Academy of Art from 1988–1992 in New York. Her works are infused with a love of nature and the landscape. Her recent works combine poetry with graphite, watercolor and a unique Polaroid emulsion technique.She has exhibited widely and is in many corporate and private collections throughout the United States. 

  • Bibliography

    Museum exhibition

    2007  Alumni in the Arts, University of Virginia Art Museum, Charlottesville, VA

    One-person exhibitions

    2008   The Birds Sang Light and Other Messages of Wonder (a traveling show): Martha Jefferson Hospital in Charlottesville, the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, and the Washington Cancer Institute in D.C. (Lillian Fitzgerald, curator).

    1996   Natural Elements, The Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression, Charlottesville, VA

    Selected group exhibitions

    2016   Summer Light, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2014   Visions of Spring, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2006   Celebrating Women in the Arts  & Women’s History Month, FOCUS Women’sResource Center in cooperation with Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2004   Small Treasures, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2003   Artists Among Us,  Second Street Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    The H’Art Show, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2001   IX Artists,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    2000   The Winter Group Show,  New Dominion Bookshop, Charlottesville, VA

    Hindsite Fore-site: Painting in the year 2000,  Les Yeux duMonde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1999   Moving into the Millennuim: Darkness,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    Small Works II, Mooney Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    Fall Group Show, Mooney Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1998   Moving into the Millennium: Lightness, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    The Winter Group Show,  New Dominion Bookshop, Charlottesville, VA

    1997   Summer Show,  Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    1996   Summer Solstice Show, Les Yeux du Monde Gallery, Charlottesville, VA

    Legal Spaces, Places, and Faces, C.B. Nunley Law Office, Charlottesville, VA

    Holiday Art Show, Gallery Neo, Charlottesville, VA

    Other

    2005   Cover Art: “Julep”, watercolor for The Mint Julep book by Richard B. Harwell, University of Virginia Press, Charlottlesville, VA

    Review

    Selected collections

    Laura Lee and Steve Wilson
    Betsy Sussler
    Martha Jefferson Hospital
    Mr. & Mrs. J. Stewart Byran, III, Richmond, VA
    Charlotte Minor, Richmond, VA
    Dr. & Mrs. Donald Innes, Charlottesville, VA
    Brown-Forman Corporation
    Mr. and Mrs. James C. Collins

  • Articles and Reviews
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