Since earning her MFA in painting from Arizona State University in 1985, Rebecca Crowell has led a life focused on painting. She works almost daily at her studio in western Wisconsin when not traveling for teaching or an artist residency (her residencies include two in the Catalonia region of Spain, four in Ireland, and one near Atlanta, Georgia.) Other places that have been significant to her work include the Western US and the Canary Island of Lanzarote.

Rebecca Crowell is known for her innovative painting techniques involving cold wax medium and mixed media, and is represented by a number of fine art galleries in various locations including Dublin, Ireland; Santa Fe, New Mexico; Telluride, Colorado; Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Columbia, Missouri. Her representation with Gormleys Fine Art in Dublin has recently led to international exposure, including several European art fairs.


Rebecca Crowell uses a kind of "memory mapping" to create her works which, although visually quite abstract, often still retain faint echoes of landscape and nature - its plant life, earth and rocks. For Crowell, rugged textures, earthy colors and a feeling of light, open spaces reveals her subliminal interest in the colours, mark-making and abstraction of at least a "memory" of landscape.

Her process of working in multiple layers, cutting, scratching and digging back brings to mind the observation by Louis le Brocquy: "The painter, like the archaeologist, is a watcher, a supervisor of accident; patiently disturbing the surface of things until significant accident becomes apparent, recognising it, conserving this as best he can while provoking further accident. In this way a whole image, a whatness, may with luck gradually emerge almost spontaneously". This is Crowell's process too.

Although Crowell's work is generally quiet, orderly and meditative in its finished form, the production of the work can be quite violent with sharp tools and aggressive "archaeology" coupled with periods of careful editing and decisiveness - considering the place of any fortunate accidents and random occurrences.

Above all she has learned to "trust the process." Crowell has written: "The goal in my process is not to render something in paint but to allow the paint to suggest a path through the work as it develops. I remain in charge of what to keep and what to discard, and how to structure and organize the image."

Crowell is an artist of considerable talent and stature and it is not difficult to envisage a major breakthrough into the mainstream of the American art scene in the very near future. Recent international representation would indicate that her future reputation will not just be limited to America.

John Loughrey - IrishArt.com - 2010
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Upcoming Exhibits

January 11-February 12, 2015: A Gift of Days: Work from my Time in Ireland, solo exhibit, LE Phillips Memorial Public Library, Eau Claire, WI. Reception and artist talk, January 15, 6:30-8:30 pm.

February 2 March 13, 2015: Surface Tension (group exhibit) at the Bernal Gallery, Pima County Community College, Tucson, AZ. Reception and artist talk, February 12 4:30-6:30 pm.

Studio News

I have recently completed a commission of five large paintings for the new Zayed Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research at MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas.

Workshop News

I am currently finalizing my 2015 Oil &Wax Workshop schedule, with classes coming up in Tucson, Arizona; Taos, NM; Saxnas, Sweden; Cullowhee, North Carolina; and Mineral Point, Wisconsin, as well as several at my home studio in Osseo, Wisconsin. For more information, please join my mailing list. Sign up below.

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