About

CV

Career

2014 - present: Art and Music Teacher State College Area School District.

2022: Featured in Marquis' Who's Who in America Education.

Solo Exhibitions:

2021: "An Evening of Art" @ Rhoneymeade, State College, PA (July & August).

2022: Artworks featured at Otto's Pub and Brewery, State College, Pa.

Exhibitor:

2021: "D.E.M.O." @ M.A.D.S art gallery, Milan, Italy. https://www.madsgallery.art/item/27dc41f6-cf7b-4066-b3a8-f5e7965489e1/artist/austin-van-allen.

2021: Bellefonte Holiday Show @ Bellefonte Art Museum Bellefonte, PA.

2022: Virtual Artists Gallery.

Upcoming Exhibits:

2021/2022: CurioCool Gallery, Zelienople, PA. https://www.curiocool.com/exhibitions

2021/2022: "Royal Flames" Series featured at MONAT Gallery, Madrid, Spain. https://www.monatgallery.com/artists/austin-van-allen/.

2022: "Royal Flames" Series to appear at the Luxembourg International Arts Festival in May 2022

2022: Monaco International Arts Festival, partner with Van Gogh Artist Gallery.

Publications:

Centre Arts Magazine November/December Issue, Volume 5, no. 6. p. 10.

Power of Positivity documentary.


Commissioned Works:

"Roll for Hope". 24in. x 14in. Watercolor and Ink. Commissioned by FluffyWolf2, Twitch streamer, for Extra Life Gaming Event. Design printed on playmats offered at the event. Benefits went to the Children's Miracle Hospital Network.

"Cascade". 48in. x 36in. Watercolor and Ink. Commissioned by the Erickson Family for Rodney Erickson, the 17th President of Penn State University.



A glimpse into my creative process:

My Movie 7.MOV

Losing Control and Finding Myself Again


My artwork illustrates the duality of the artist in me: freedom of expression and a need for control. I am a person who likes control over my artwork, and yet, I have always appreciated the colors and freedom of expressionist and neo expressionist painters like Vincent Van Gogh, Leonid Afremov, and Dale Chihuly. I spent years honing my realistic drawing skills and trying to capture light and shadow. During the pandemic of 2020, society's need for control became overwhelming. This combined with some career challenges really affected my mental state, which made it impossible for me to sit for hours trying to make an artwork look as realistic as possible. I lost all of my inspiration and I was suffocating. Instead, I started throwing paint onto paper... Literally throwing it. I used my hands, a brush, cups of water, it didn’t matter, I just wanted - no, I needed- color and life. It felt great, it was a release, and I slowly started to feel like myself again.


My use of watercolor came as a surprise as previously it was never my go-to medium. Most of my limited school experiences with it left me believing it was messy, dull, and most importantly, it was too hard to control. Even though I didn’t love watercolor, as an art teacher, I still had to teach it to children, so I took a watercolor course in the fall of 2019. It was during this course that I grew to appreciate the beauty of watercolor. To do that, I had to stop trying to control it. Colors bleed together, water runs and pools in unique places, blooms happen - I learned how to celebrate all of it. However, there was a small part of me that still needed the control, so I tried something new: I used ink pens to draw on top of the watercolor paint. Suddenly, this unique style of art was born. Instead of painting what I draw, I draw what I paint.


Anyone who has experienced my art and my teaching knows that I love color. I like it loud, vibrant, and stunning. Paintings by Leonid Afremov and Dale Chihuly captivate me and their color schemes influence my own work. Liquid watercolor became my medium of choice because of its ability to provide the intense colors that I love. The ink that is drawn over top of the paint is only meant to highlight the beauty of the watercolor and provide a little more depth in my artwork.


When others view my work, I hope that they see emotion, energy, and passion that comes from casting off control. I want them to see, appreciate, and celebrate the beauty in imperfection. Just like watercolor paint, life can offer something unique and beautiful when left to its own devices. I stopped trying to control everything, and somewhere in the mess, I’m beginning to find myself again.