Art museum showcases work of magic realist Colleen Browning
The Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Johnstown has announced the opening of its latest exhibition, “Theaters of the Imagination: The Early Works of Colleen Browning.” The exhibition, on view Jan. 4 through March 15, features 40 works from the Museum’s permanent collection.
The art explores the early and pervasive love of fantasy that led to Browning’s emergence as a magic realist. Through rare drawings, paintings and watercolors, the exhibition charts the artist’s growth from child prodigy to working professional. It begins with the unusually sophisticated compositions of her childhood and progresses through her student days at London’s famous Slade School of Fine Art. Culminating in the artist’s designs for murals and stage sets, the exhibition offers unique insights into how a gifted young woman becomes an important artistic innovator.
Browning became a leader of the magic realist movement following her move from Britain to the United States in 1949.
In 2010 SAMA received a major bequest of Browning’s artwork and personal memorabilia from the artist’s late husband, Geoffrey Wagner. With nearly 250 paintings and drawings in its permanent collection, SAMA is the leading repository of the artist’s work.
The Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art at Johnstown is located in the Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center on the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown campus. Hours are 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. The Museum is open to the public free of charge. For more information, call the museum at 814-269-7234, or visit www.sama-art.org.