In Memory of Joyce Owens R.I.P.

"Art is Business"  
Classic Chicago Magazine   Joyce Owens transitioned on Saturday, February 10th, 2024.

Artist Joyce Owens, 76, showed the ‘positive’ Black experience in her work.
Owens was primarily a painter and dabbled in 3-D art forms and jewelry-making. In an exhibition, the Chicago State University professor wrote: “I decided not to do angry Black men and angry Black women. I painted what I saw.  by Mariah Rush on Feb 13, 2024, 3:11pm CST.

Chicago-based artist, teacher, and curator Joyce Owens Anderson was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She grew up in a working-class neighborhood in Philadelphia. Owens’s mother, Eloise Owens, was a trained opera singer who encouraged her daughter to become an art teacher. Nevertheless, Owens attended Howard University, earning her B.F.A. degree in art. Owens then attended Yale University, earning her M.F.A. degree in painting. After working various jobs, including arts and crafts director, art teacher, and producer for Philadelphia’s CBS television station, Owens moved to Chicago, Illinois. She then spent eight years working for WBBM-TV, CBS Channel 2 in Chicago, as the graphic arts coordinator for news. Owens did additional work for the company as a graphic artist, researcher, and news assistant, always painting and exhibiting her art.

@ Tony Smith photo credit

After Owens's solo exhibition at Chicago State University, she was invited to join the faculty. She has taught there since 1996, specializing in studio painting and drawing. Joyce Owens is known for addressing racism, skin color, and black self-determination through her paintings, masks, and installations. Her art materials are primarily acrylic paints on canvas, wood, and paper. Found objects are often incorporated into her two- and three-dimensional works. Owens’s artwork has been shown nationally in juried, invitational, solo, and group exhibitions in galleries and museums. Two of her curatorial efforts were singled out by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs as featured programs during Chicago Artists Month. Some other highlights of her career include being selected as the featured artist for Columbia College’s fifteenth annual DanceAfrica Chicago Festival, inclusion in Daniel T. Parker’s book African Art: The Diaspora and Beyond, “The Art of Culture” exhibition and catalog that also featured artist/art historian, Samella Lewis; and Howard University’s “A Proud Continuum: Eight Decades of Art at Howard University,” a juried exhibition of former Howard art students including Elizabeth Catlett.

@ Fletcher Hayes
We often traveled in the same circles, running into each other at art openings and conversing about our work. I remember coming onto the scene in Chicago and being a featured artist with us when we first met during Chicago Artists Month. We've also been in various exhibitions over the years.  I am so glad to have known her; her energy, smile, and laughter were infectious.