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Born: 1962, California
Has practiced at Creative Growth since 1993
Terri Bowden's early work consisted primarily of albino animals and people – an interest she developed while attending summer camp with other legally blind people. Using rich applications of pastel, her work on paper plays with the lack of pigment in the figures and the vibrant saturation of colors that surround them. Her figures can be rendered in sketchy black and white with starkly blank backgrounds, or burst with color in clownish makeup and pastel wigs. Their hands are often prominently oversized and they pose stiffly and blink, as if Bowden has captured them in a moment of surprise. Either anonymous rockers or icons like Michael Jackson and Rod Stewart, Bowden enforces a sublime aesthetic that transcends conventionality she describes as 'dented.' Bowden's recent practice has shifted almost exclusively to digital work, using an iPad to alter photographs and create AR architecture. There is a through line from her earlier work to the digital 'makeovers' of historical figures, celebrities, and rock stars that imbue her subjects with bold new meanings. Bowden often carries 'friends' with her (life sized mat board cutouts) to Creative Growth on BART from her house, to which she attaches her digital portraits. Like her works on paper, Creative Growth staff are given oversized (and sometimes webbed) hands and feet, glam punk platinum hair, and stickered with various national flags. Bowden's work is included in the permanent collection at the MADmusée in Liege.
Please contact [email protected] for any questions regarding this artwork and any other inquiries.