Jess Owens-Young

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Baltimore, Maryland, United States
Jess Owens-Young
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Jess Owens-Young

Baltimore, Maryland, United States

About

Multi-disciplinary self taught artist focusing on living while Black (USA)

Jess Owens-Young (b. 1986) is a multidisciplinary self-taught artist whose work focuses on living while Black in the United States. Her work seeks to highlight the resilience and joy of Black people in the US. She uses her art to explore the lives of Black people, including interior lives, both physically (i.e., the idea of home) and emotionally. Jess works primarily with acrylics, oil pastels, oil pigment sticks, and acrylic inks on canvas and paper. Her works include portraiture, figurative painting, and collage. She also works digitally along the same themes. Her inspirations include artists such as William H. Johnson, Elizabeth Catlett, Emory Douglas, Delita Martin, Henry Taylor, Deborah Roberts, and Alice Neel, and authors such as Octavia Butler and Toni Morrison. 

Artist Statement:

My inspiration is drawn from observation of Black life. I look to my lived experiences, as well as those from my wife, family, friends, and communities, including my in-person and digital communities. My art practice centers figuration and portraiture, but I am currently adding aspects of abstraction to my latest work to explore the Black experience more fully through my lens. I am interested in the interactions of figure and space to create narratives and meanings and how colors and shape evoke emotions. Memory and the emotions related to memories also drive my art practice. I hope that when viewers interact with my work, they are pulled not only into the physical attributes of my work, but also pulled a bit within themselves to experience and connect with the emotions my work evokes.

Location

Baltimore, Maryland, United States