"This painting is of two kokopelli playing flutes in between a sun in the center. The kokopelli is a native fertility god in the southwest that arrives near spring, playing a musical instrument. I wanted to fuse my love of the southwest and cubism. I started this piece by sketching two kokopelli (mohawk hair, elongated body, short arms) and a sun in the center. I painted it darker toward the edges, and lighter in the center. I only used blue and brown for color, with white and black for shadows and highlights. I named it "Duality" because each side is different but similar."
- Brandon Allebach
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“One lesson I learned through art is to be patient and loving with myself. The desire to be an artist early in life was made hard by accepting the flaws that come with learning how to paint. One broader lesson in life learned was self discipline. It's important to set goals and work hard for what's important.”
Brandon is a deeply introspective artist who works everyday to refine his practice. He lived in Seattle, Washington for eighteen years, then moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico where he has lived ever since. Speaking on his journey with art, Brandon explains, “I began making art as a child to play and imagine. As a teenager it bled out as an expressive force. As a young man I made art to make a name for myself. Now [at age] 36, I make art to sustain my family.”
Juggling and fusing three styles: southwest, abstract, and cubism, Brandon makes pieces that are distinct and alluring. He gravitates towards sharp lines, depth, and intensity of color. Sometimes he starts painting unconsciously by seeing lines in the gesso layer, while other paintings require months of introspection before sketching the idea onto a canvas. His large acrylic paintings can take up to a month to complete. Living with Holt Oram syndrome, which affects the use of his hands and arms, creates different challenges when painting, but Brandon adapts and perseveres.
“The need to be creative has created a space in life I can exist in, a safe space of thought and feelings. Creativity is most active when I am at play and rest, where ideas arise and are meditated on through everyday life. Having these ideas arise, grow, and become a tangible piece of art allows me to face broader challenges, because I am constantly meditating on my sense of inner self and growing in the process.”
Brandon describes catharsis, the ability to look at the past and heal from pain through art, as his main inspiration. In this way, he uses creation as a vehicle for personal growth. Through art, Brandon shares, “I learned that I am a perfectionist. I learned that I am not perfect. I learned that people don't see the flaws I see. I learned that I'm good enough for me.”
Brandon enjoys being a part of the artist community. “I love the originality and uniqueness that every artist gives, and that everyone has a talent,” he explains. He hopes to continue improving his career and providing for his loved ones. When he’s not painting, he likes to play guitar and spend time with family.
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