Xanadu Gallery | Scottsdale, AZ*

Maura Allen

About Maura Allen

Native Americans, Lewis and Clark, Remington, Russell, and dime store magazines were among the first storytellers to shape our view of the American West. Song, photography and film were soon added to the mix—and mythology. Whether real or romanticized, stories of the American West are at the center of Maura Allen’s work.

She starts each piece on location, looking directly into the sun. A black and white award-winning photographer, her photographic images made on location serve as a starting point for her mixed media paintings. With details obscured, she looks for strong, iconic silhouettes, which have become the core of her signature style.

In her studio, the artist often weaves “Old West” elements (vintage wall paper designs, typography and other symbols) with modern day imagery. The result? A feeling the past is always present.

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Allen grew up in Northern California, around the corner from Stanford University, where the iconic Eadweard Muybridge’s stop-action images of a running horse were taken and are now displayed. She studied Latin/Classical Studies there, learning how iconic figures, myth and moments define a culture. When she began photographing the American West with ranchers and wranglers as her trusted guides, she realized the same cultural forces were at play.

Her work is included in museum, corporate and private collections, sold in top galleries, and has been featured in dozens of publications. When not on the road, Prescott, AZ, and the Williamson Valley are home.

Maura serves on the Board of Trustees at the Desert Caballeros Western Museum in Wickenburg, AZ and on the Board of Directors of photolucida, a Portland, OR-based photography non-profit with national reach.