For Joseph Alleman, an important motive to paint lies in understanding his surroundings. “Finding compelling subject matter within an environment is all about looking beyond detail, breaking things down into shapes and values. There’s definitely a time and place to venture into the unknown but for me the ultimate reward is to find something new within the familiar. It’s the idea of looking closer at what’s in front of you, revisiting what you think you know with a new perspective- those are the pieces that feel the most inspired and genuine.”
Alleman was born 1975 in SanFrancisco, CA. He spent his early years drawing “Indians” near Joshua Tree National Park in Twentynine Palms, CA before moving to Utah’s Salt Lake Valley in the early eighties. He began his study of painting under Utah artist Harold Petersen at the age of fifteen and graduated with a BA in Fine Art from Utah State University in 2000.
2020 marks the 20th anniversary of his career in art. “I established myself early on as a watercolorist, and while still an important part of my work, the emphasis has gradually shifted to oil over the years,” Alleman notes. He currently resides in Cache Valley, and finds a great deal of inspiration in the region’s land, towns, and the people which make it unique.
In 2019, Utah artist Don Weller published a 200-page visual memoir of his work titled “Tracks” and is following it up with “The River Flows” which will feature a visual collection of top historic and contemporary Western watercolorists, including Allemann. “I was honored to be included,” Allemann says. “While the exhibition isn’t until 2021 [at the Phippen Museum in Prescott, AZ.], I’m looking forward to the book which is nearing press, and getting back in the watercolor ‘saddle’ a bit more in 2020 in preparation for the exhibition.
Every January we check in with Utah artists to see what the new year holds in store for them.
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