by Joanna Nixon
For those of you who frequent First Fridays at the Harrison Center you will be no stranger to the work of Quincy Owens. Quincy has been most notably known for his large vibrant abstracts and mixed media works on canvas, masonite and paper. His acrylic paintings line the walls outside his lower level Harrison Center studio almost like his own personal pop-up gallery. While Quincy's large scale abstract paintings have garnered the attention of collectors across the U.S., he has recently been exploring a new medium and an exciting new direction with his work.
What began as a project to create 3" x 3" mixed media resin works on wood (referred to by Quincy as "Coasters") has evolved into something different and unique in the local visual art scene. Using interesting imagery from magazines, newsprint, or his own works on paper, Quincy has been able to create mini works of art that are not only incredibly affordable ($15 each) and one of kind originals.
When I visited Quincy's studio on a recent First Friday I was instantly drawn to these 3" x 3" resin pieces, they were visually interesting and I immediately realized that they had much bigger potential than stand alone coasters. It was on that February First Friday that I talked with Quincy about doing a "coaster" commission. That night, among all of the First Friday craziness, Quincy and I chatted about my initial vision for a unique piece for a large, empty, dark gray wall in my home. With a few follow-up conversations we ultimately came up with a plan for a 42 piece wall installation.
While the thought of working with an artist to create a commission can be super intimidating, Quincy was incredible to work with. He was open to brainstorming my idea, offering suggestions and genuinely interested in making sure I got exactly the piece I wanted that fit my space. The coolest part of the commission process was going back to Quincy's studio for a follow-up visit to select the 42 resin pieces that I wanted in my installation and hearing the unique story and inspiration behind each work. One of the pieces in my installation includes an early 1900's construction blueprint from the former John Herron Art Institute located at 16th and Pennsylvania. Not only is it cool looking, but it's also a neat piece of Indianapolis history.
Quincy's 42 piece mixed media work is now installed in my home and it's both a fantastic conversation piece and an original commission by a great local artist. Quincy's work would be perfect for someone who likes abstract paintings, bright colors and mixed media work. What also makes Quincy's work great is the variable sizes of his pieces which are perfect for almost any location. His work ranges from 3" x 3" to large abstracts such as 72" x 48" and every size in between.
A friend of mine recently offered a challenge in an IndySphere blog encouraging First Friday goers to support our local visual artists not only by showing up to peruse the art but also by buying their work. I accepted this challenge, will you?