“Aaron Fowler (b. 1988, St. Louis, MO) creates elaborate assemblage paintings from discarded found objects and unconventional materials sourced from his local surroundings. Through intuitive layering of castoff furniture, oil and acrylic paint, and collaged elements including CDs, water bottles, iridescent LED lights, car parts, and plastic bags, Fowler meticulously constructs hybrid tableaux infused with a sense of raw urgency. Taking compositional cues from American history painting and religious iconography, Fowler inserts both imagined and concrete narratives from his personal experience. Each work illustrates a poignant subject or event that holds significance for the artist, from portraits of incarcerated family members and friends lost in acts of violence to fantastical scenarios incorporating historical figures, role models, and public icons. For the window of the New Museum’s 231 Bowery Building, Fowler presents Bigger Than Me, a new installation of his work.” — New Museum
Aaron Fowler, Brown Town, 2017. Christmas tree trunks, fake palm tree, pianos, shirtsleeves, shirts, acrylic and enamel paint, paint tubes, dirt, tire, car parts, hair weave, Minions backpack, graduation cap, CDs, LED rope lights, and Plexiglas on wood panels and truck topper. 16 x 12 x 3 ft (4.9 x 3.7 x 1 m). Courtesy the artist
Aaron Fowler, El Camino, 2017. Acrylic paint, enamel paint, car parts, hair weave, mirrors, CDs, fan, fitted cap, tires, poker tables, speakers, digital print, and concrete on conference tables. 14 x 11 x 4 ft (4.3 x 3.4 x 1.2 m). Courtesy the artist
Aaron Fowler, Me and E, 2017. Acrylic and oil paint, gold leaf, charcoal, sand, spray foam, drywall, canvas, screws, CDs, hair weave, beard hair, seashells, shoes, green shorts, fitted cap, hemp bracelets, rope lighting, ‘For Sale’ sign, mirrors, cotton balls, Home Depot bucket, Patron bottles, barstools, metal sheets, paper, and digital print on shower doors, wooden doors, and wood panels. 13 x 15 ft (4 x 4.6 m). Courtesy the artist
Aaron Fowler, Jmae, 2017. Acrylic paint, mirror, Afro weds with tags, gold lead, photo print, lace dress jackets, and plastic balls on a hot tub cover. 8 x 9 ft (2.4 x 2.7 m). Courtesy the artist
Aaron Fowler, E$, 2017. Acrylic paint, trophies, chandelier crystals, photo print, screws, hair weave, Afro weave, mirror, and rope on metal and wood restaurant stools suspended from chain. 4 1/2 x 9 ft (1.4 x 2.7 m). Courtesy the artist
Aaron Fowler, Mom Knows, 2016. Acrylic paint, photo print, hair weave, fitted caps, concrete, mirror, unfinished door, rope, and Afro wigs on wood and entertainment center. 125 x 176 x 30 in (317.5 x 447 x 76.2 cm) and 40 x 27 x 3 in (101.6 x 68.6 x 7.6 cm). Courtesy the artist
“Aaron Fowler: Bigger Than Me” is part of a series of window installations that relaunches the program originally mounted at the New Museum in the 1980s. This program included now-legendary projects by Jeff Koons, David Hammons, Linda Montano, Bruce Nauman, Gran Fury, and others. This project is curated by Margot Norton, Curator.
Images courtesy New Museum.