The figures in Coady Brown’s paintings find themselves enclosed within tight and intimate spaces, engaging in scenarios of self-presentation and self-preservation as they juggle their public and private lives. Her figures are rendered flat, abstracted and splintered, the identity crises the figures seem to be undergoing reflected in the riotous, contrasting colours and textures that make up the figures’ fashion-forward outfits. According to Brown, her figures are “specifically dressed. The emphasis on fashion is a celebratory declaration of the body… Fashion becomes a site of freedom, a place to explore self-expression and presentation.” In a world in which bodies can feel divided and confused, Brown’s figures re-assert control of their physicality by coolly reveling in their frenetic, surreal and sexy states.
Born in Baltimore but now based in New York, Brown completed her MFA in painting and printmaking at Yale University in 2016 and pursued further education at the Skowhegan School of Painting in Madison, Maine in 2017. Her work has been exhibited internationally in group shows in venues such as NAM Projects (Milan), Tomorrow Gallery, Mulherin Gallery and the Abrons Art Center (New York), Infinity Gallery (Los Angeles) and the Woodmere Art Museum (Philadelphia). She is the recipient of several prestigious prizes for her work, including the Schlosberg Memorial Prize for Excellence in Painting from Yale University (2016), the Gianni Caproni Prize in Painting from Temple University (Rome) and the Richard Cramer Color Award in Painting from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University (Philadelphia).