Brianna M. Allen
Brianna currently resides in Lincolnville, Maine.
She is creating a body of work that is inspired by the women in American history who impacted history by simply existing within the pens of sexism. Illuminating these women, she aims to draw parallels to how we still value women today.
She is pioneering to produce midcoast Maine's first locally grown burlesque show, Summer of 2016.
You can also find her baking, quite often, and on hikes
with Rob and Boone Dog.
Statement and Bio
I am currently exploring my experience as an artist through community storytelling, painting and installation work. My work centers the universal experience of what Motherhood can be and feel like. I seek to challenge the normative space palatable for the artist mother (A/M) narrative. A fuller, more authentic representation challenges how society perpetuates patriarchal systems which do not serve us. My work fortifies the matriarchal connection among all self-identifying mothers as caregivers and validates the underrepresented A/M in the art world.
Representation by A/M on the theme of motherhood in contemporary art has been deficient. Patriarchal society has shifted the neutral position to male, making motherhood unimportant to explore because it seemingly excludes men. A/Ms do not have sanctified platforms to connect through mutual experiences because society does not accept- nor support, a full spectrum of “normal”, which has led me to this body of work.
My paintings have a raw quality with a palpable Pandemic schmear- using edges, gesture and linework to address themes of suppression, rage and introspection. New and emerging installation work with nylon and cement depicts the weight of expectations, a reconciliation of sheer strength and basic humility of mothering. Both my paintings and installation work have been deeply informed by The Momologue Collective; an ongoing project that offers a platform and archive for numerous short stories (momologues) contributed by mothers, to be shared anonymously on social media with an aim to build community for mothers through storytelling.
Motherhood has informed my art practice, with agitation and vigor. My work is for the mother who asks herself, “who am I?” after she has children. The work cherishes the place she is now; perhaps often feeling barren and depleted, whilst standing in the very face(s) of her creations. How does she pivot? What does she lose? What makes her human? My practice challenges the fictional Mother archetype with insurgency and hopes to lift the more familiar face within and among each other.
Brianna Allen graduated from the University of Southern Maine in 2008 with a degree in Studio Art and Entrepreneurial Studies with a concentration in Painting. After graduating she traveled to Alaska and painted and exhibited portraits of local bar tenders, cab drivers and pool players. From 2011-2013 she performed and produced Burlesque in Homer, Alaska. It was during this time that she also organized and produced larger community events through her position at Bunnell Street Arts Center, like Dinner in the Street and later on, PechaKucha presentations. In 2016 Brianna entered back into 2-dimensional work using an array of mixed media: block print, transfers, encaustics, painting. She occasionally performs using themes of American Matriarchy and is currently working on a body of work surrounding motherhood. You can also learn about the Momologue Collective, an ongoing project that aims to build community among mothers through storytelling.
Theater and Performance
2022 MOMologues, Writer, Pier One Theater & Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic, Homer, AK
2021 Momologue Shorts, Co-Director, Pier One Theater, AK
2021 Write Your Own Momologue Workshop facilitation, Pier One Theatre, AK
2020 Momologues Open Mic, Performance, Alice's Champagne Palace, AK
2018 Cabin Fever, Built to Push, Performance, Bunnell Street Arts Center, AK
2014 Catch & Release, Creator, Producer and Performer, Bait & Tassels Burlesque
2013 Pandora’s Box, Creator, Producer, Performer, Bait & Tassels Burlesque
2013 Bottoms Up!, Creator, Producer, Performer, Bait & Tassels Burlesque
2012 Burly Q Review, Creator, Producer, Performer, Bait & Tassels Burlesque
2022 MOTHER, Bunnell Street Arts Center, Homer, Alaska
2019 10 x 10 Member’s Exhibit, Bunnell Street Arts Center, Homer, Alaska
2017 10 x 10 Member’s Exhibit, Bunnell Street Arts Center, Homer, Alaska
2014 Northern Latitudes, Bunnell Street Arts Center, Alaska
2012 Nighttime Wardens & Vigilantes, Alaska Pacific University, Alaska
2011 Nighttime Wardens & Vigilantes, Bunnell Street Arts Center, Alaska
2009 Selected Homer, A.K. Portraits, Local 188 Gallery, Maine
2008 Footnotes, MidNight Sun Gallery, Anchorage, Alaska
Publications, Grants, and Awards
2022 "The Momologue Collective: An Anthology by Self-Identifying Mothers", Published by Brianna Allen
2022 Adaptation and Inspiration Project Award by the Alaska State Council on the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts
2009 "From East to West: Bicoastal Verse," Issue Fall 2009, pages 18- 28.
2007 Department of Art Discipline Award for International Studies, The University of Southern Maine.
2019 PechaKucha Vol. I - III, Producer and host - PechaKucha 20×20 is a concise presentation format for 8-10 speakers to share their passions, story or craft among their community via a self-advancing slide talk: 20 slides for 20 seconds. at The Pratt Museum, SPARC and The Shop. Produced by Bunnell Street Arts Center
2017 and 2014 Dinner in the Street, Producer - Five-course, seated dinner for one hundred guests in the middle of the street in Old Town, Homer, Alaska. Produced by Bunnell Street Arts Center
Education and Work Experience
2016-Current, Marketing and Development Lead, Bunnell Street Arts Center, AK
2015 Maine Media, Visual Storytelling and Adobe Premiere Workshop, ME
2010-2013 Life Drawing Coordinator, AK
2006 National Latvian Academy of Art, Latvia
2004-08 University of Southern Maine, BA in Painting and BA in Art & Entrepreneurial Studies, Maine