“These paintings are part of a series called American Myths; they are narrative paintings inspired by the various mythologies of the world. They're informed by history and ecology, as well as folk songs, dreams, and visions. Depicted is a world of strange rituals and epic journeys, where humans have an intimate relationship with nature. These are paintings whose meanings lie just outside the grasp of our conscious minds.

These paintings resemble illustrations, but illustrations are meant to accompany the word. Instead, each painting is its own short story, and you, the viewer, have a hand in writing them. The influences for my art include folk art and vintage illustration, as well as indigenous art and Renaissance paintings. Some of my works are rendered in oil or acrylic on canvas, and others are rendered in gouache on paper; the style may change, but the vision remains the same.

I am originally from the southeastern United States. My early days were spent drawing and exploring the pine forests that surrounded my home. I studied art in Atlanta, Ga., and Oakland, Calif., crossing the country many times by bus, train, and car. Scotland, the southern Appalachians, the Montana Rockies, and the Washington Cascades are all places I've called home; I also spent a brief period living in the 1930s.” – Ian Brownlee

Ian Brownlee divides his time between Asheville, N.C. and Oakland, California.


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