Jossy Lownes remembers painting with her aunt as a child in Rhode Island. But it wasn’t until she was in her forties that she embarked on a career as an artist. “I never gave up on wanting to be an artist, but sometimes life takes you in different directions,” says Lownes, who returned to the canvas after stints as a schoolteacher and real estate agent.
Lownes, 71, has found her greatest acclaim in acrylic pieces that combine abstract and contemporary figurative art with a “hands on” approach: “I like the freedom of doing finger work or line work,” Lownes says. “I put gloves on and put paint on the canvas with my fingers instead of a brush. It’s more immediate and gives a more unpredictable mark. It is more of the gesture of the figure than a portrait look.” But Lownes refuses to “finger” the specific meaning of her hand-to-canvas paintings. “I want viewers to relate to the situation and how it makes them feel,” she explains. “Even though I can say the painting is of people walking down the street, I want it to be more nebulous.”
Lownes’ paintings were a hit at the Celebration of Fine Art in January (she’ll be there again in 2013), and her north Scottsdale studio will be open to the public November 16-18 and 23-25 for the Hidden in the Hills Studio Tour (sonoranartsleague.org). Check out her work at jossylownes.com.