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Arts in Milwaukee

A Public Service Of Milwaukee Artist Resource Network

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  • “Urban Renewal”Urban Renewal

    36" H X 60" W Acrylic on canvas

Gwen Granzow

  • Art
I am an Art Professional

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artist bio

I got really lucky. My mom is a true artist, my dad an engineer. Because they were young and hungry when I was born, they also gave me a firm grounding in DIY, which has had a huge influence on my willingness to attempt almost anything creative.

I sold my first works of art at the age of nine: clay pendants with peace signs for $1 in my mom’s ceramics booth at art fairs. By the time I was in my teens, I was showing my ceramic creations and mixed media collages at juried exhibitions throughout the Midwest. I did this through college, earned a BFA in graphic design and entered the business world.

For more than 30 years I’ve been in the graphic design world and am currently the Regional VP, North America for Spark, a London-based company. My career in graphic design has been demanding and satisfying, but it has never been quite enough. With an eye toward honing my fine art skills, I’ve explored printmaking, collage, fused glass, textiles, metal sculpture and furniture making. I use digital photography, software, and my design skills to help me refine my work.

My paintings and mixed media pieces have depth, structure and texture that lift them, visually, above the surface of the canvas. I combine the influences from my many experiments, and professional experience, to create unique and varied artwork in acrylics, mixed media and metals.

artist statement

I paint mysteries, especially into the subtleties. I want people to look into the shadows and find the little, unexpected gems of texture and shape. They involve the viewer and help him see what he wants to see, so he can make up his own story.

While some works are influenced by landscapes and natural elements, most have an explosive energy that erupts for a point. Ideas are drawn together by shapes and lines that lead from complex to simple, negative to positive, from dark depths to positive energy, uplifting and happy, free and unchained.