12 Questions: Brett Angell

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We are excited to present a new artist we have begun to represent! Brett Angell is originally from Milwaukee, WI and was taught by Tom Uttech. We were immediately struck by the artist's imaginative landscapes in his assembled frames. Brett creates landscapes that make you question the divisions between what is real and imagined with a feeling of both hope and dread. He creates the frames first and uses them as inspiration for the final paintings (which is the opposite of how most artists work). You can see the great midwestern attention to detail and craft in these amazing miniature paintings! We hope you enjoy getting to know Brett and discovering his work!

1. What are 1-3 books that have influenced your life? What are you reading or watching right now?

May Sarton “Journal Of Solitude”, Musa Mayer “Night Studio, A Memoir Of Philip Guston”, Joe Fig “Inside The Painter’s Studio”. I’m currently reading the Harvard Art Museum catalog for “Painting Edo, Selections From The Feinberg Collection Of Japanese Art”. Just finished watching “The Valhalla Murders” on Netflix. Looking forward to watching the second seasons of “What We Do In The Dark”, “Penny Dreadful” and “Taboo”. Come on Tom Hardy stop making stupid Marvel movies and make the second season of Taboo already!

2. What are you currently working on? Are you able to create during the pandemic?

Currently I’m working on paintings. My studio is where I live so I am able to paint every day for between 8-12 hours. The pandemic is helping my studio practice tremendously!

3. How has failure set you up for later success? What was your favorite failure?

My entire art career has been one big failure. Really! I’ve come so close to great things happening and then falling through so many times I can’t even tell you. The good part of that is I feel free to paint and go wherever I want to go with it. No pressure because it doesn’t support me financially or pay the bills. Truly a labor of love! My favorite failure comes from when I was still in graduate school. I had a show at a local fancy restaurant and I got a call from the owner asking me if I could remove a couple of the nudes. These were painted very loosely and non-specifically with little detail. When I arrived to the owner’s surprise I took the entire show down. “All or nothing” I said. Stupid! I had high ideals I guess. It’s not so much of a failure as an immature, brash over-reaction.

4. What is your most unusual habit?

Watching TMZ every night religiously. If I’m going to be away or at work late I record it. Seriously! I’m obsessed with it.

5. If you could have any painter, living or dead paint your portrait who would it be and why? Vermeer. The best painter ever of course!

6. What is the most indispensable item in your studio/workspace/office?

My music on my iPod and iPhone.