Paul Cowan
American , born 1985
197 followers
Emerging
Represented by up-and-coming galleries.
Selected exhibitions
2016
Michael Jon & Alan at Dallas Art Fair 2016,
Michael Jon & Alan
2015
Michael Jon Gallery at Artissima 2015,
Michael Jon & Alan
Paul Cowan,
Michael Jon & Alan

Paul Cowan makes painting-like objects that allude to and upend painterly conventions. Drawn from the worlds of commercial signage and fine art, his hybrid objects often feature enamel, rather than paint, applied to canvas. For one body of work, Cowan hired professional sign-makers to make simple gestures—squiggles, borders, and scalloped lines—in primary colors on his works' surfaces. Such marks, both utilitarian and painterly, question the boundary between functional and artistic painting. Other works involve monochromatic or patterned fabric in which the artist has attached a small fish hook. The glistening silver bauble attracts the viewer’s eye, serving as a literal and metaphorical hook—a prompt to consider the ways paintings ask for and command our attention.