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Art Gallery AFK

Mark Andrew Allen

Born 1957, Houston, Texas

Lives and works in Los Angeles, CA



Allen began his training early with his artist father. He received a bachelor’s degree in commercial art at Texas State University inSan Marcos, and later he continued his studies at Parson’s School of Design in New York City. He opened his first studio in an artist co-op where he had his first shows at the gallery “Designers Space” in Austin, TX. Painting soon became an obsession for him. In the late 80’s, Mark moved to Los Angeles and studied further at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA. He began using typography in his paintings and exploring scale with billboard size canvases. He served as Vice President of development in the American Institute of Graphic Arts, Los Angeles Chapter. He travelled to Europe in the early 1990’s to see the great art at world class museums. Upon returning, Allen began creating artwork on a daily basis. He rented an apartment in New York City and went back and forth from West coast to East coast eventually establishing himself with several galleries, including the Goldstrom Gallery in New York City.



Mark Andrew Allen Statement



"When explaining my paintings to someone that has never seen them before, I like to say that my work is similar to riding a bicycle on the busy beach path in Venice, California. You see a lot of different imagery and hear snipets of conversation whizzing by you a second or two at a time. Just a sentence or two as you pass by. I incorporate that concept into my work. We are constantly bombarded everyday with images and words. Every second, there is a new email, a text message, an interesting commercial, a new song on the radio, a bird singing out the window, a loud garbage truck. All of this makes up the reality of our day-to-day lives. I edit that and incorporate them into my work. A lot of the imagery I choose harks back to childhood memories of feeling safe, carefree, and happy which is welcome in these uncertain times. If it feels good for one reason or another, I know I have the right picture.


Each work is an additive process that involves one central large image, then a secondary mid-size image and a third smaller image,establishing a formal balance, therefore allowing me to layer complexities of distractions. 

Some of the complexities carry over from piece to piece. For example, I have added a 'Baldessari' dot with drips to many works as a nod to the California artist. The smaller colorful dots on some of the pieces are a nod to UK artist Damien Hirst's dot paintings. The typography nods to Ed Ruscha and Stuart Davis and my own extensive typography background creating lettering and fonts for fortune 500 companies around the globe. The mixed media of 'found objects' and pop art is a nod to Rauschenberg, Lichtenstein, and Warhol, all of whom I have met. The drips are a nod to the 'New York School Action Painters' of the Fifties, mainly Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline, and DeKooning. The 'push and pull' of the colors contrasting each other is also a nod to DeKooning and Gorky. The checkerboard pattern is a nod to Kandinsky. Other important influences include Larry Rivers, Jim Dine, Christo, Frank Gehry, Ed Moses, Nancy Keinholtz ( I have met all of them), James Rosenquiest, Jasper Johns, Robert Motherwell, Richard Diebenkorn, Chris Burden, Nancy Rubins, Marcel Duchamp, Henri Matisse, and above all Picasso.


I like to overlay the multicolor squares that I refer to as 'pixels' on each piece to represent the annoying pixels we get on our TV when we are trying to watch our favourite TV shows. We pay a ton of money for our cable and still get these damn pixels. I thought, why not let that concept creep into my work and let the 'pixels' sometimes block out important information. Also a roundabout nod to cubism and Picasso whom I spent six years studying.


It all brings the work to real time. Each one of my works strives to represent what it is like to live today. The most important job of an artist is to represent the time of which he lives."





SOLO SHOWS (Selection)

2014 Chic Design, Hollywood, CA 
2013 Landon Cole, Los Angeles, CA
2011 Montana Art Show, Santa Monica, CA
2010 944 Bldg lobby, West Hollywood, CA
2010 The Rise, Hollywood, CA
2010 Studio Show, Santa Monica, CA
2010 Coppola Art Exchange, Beverly Hills, CA
2006 Le Petit, Santa Monica, CA  
2004 Abbot’s Habit, Venice, CA 
2000 Rockefeller Center, Carnevale Italia, New York, NY 
2000 Soapbox Gallery, Venice, CA 
2000 Gavin Gallery, New Zealand 
1999 Rockefeller Center, New York, NY 
1998 The Front, New York, NY 
1995 Mission Gallery, San Diego, CA 
1994 X/O Gallery, Art Is Stupid,  Los Angeles, CA 
1992 M.A. Venice Gallery, Venice, CA 
1992 BAba, Santa Monica, CA, 
1992 The Mint, Los Angeles, CA

GROUP SHOWS (Selection)

2014 Art Gallery AFK, Lisbon, Portugal 
2014 DK Gallery, Marietta, GA 
2013 Winfield Gallery, Carmel, CA
2013 Elizabeth Gordon Gallery, Santa Barbara, CA
2013 Just Modern, Palm Springs, CA
2013 Saatchi Online Gallery, "Contemporary Collage Collection" London, England
2013 DK Gallery, Marietta, GA 
2013 Atelier Gallery, Charleston, SC
2013 Pavart Gallery, Rome, Italy
2013 Jeanie Madsen Gallery, “I Love Santa Monica” Santa Monica, CA
2013 Jules Place, "Cool and Calm" Boston, MA
2013 Jeanie Madsen Gallery, “California Dreamin” Santa Monica, CA 
2013 Parlor Gallery,  "New Works, Old Friends" Asbury Park, NJ
2013 Jeanie Madsen Gallery, “Hollywood” Santa Monica, CA
2012 Aqua 12, Art Basel / Miami Beach, FL
2012 Jeanie Madsen Gallery, “Hollywood” Santa Monica, CA
2012 Art Mode, Chelsea, Quebec, Canada
2012 Parlor Gallery,  Asbury Park, NJ
2012 Jules Place, Color Meditation" Boston, MA
2012 Whole 9 Gallery, Culver City, CA
2012 Jeanie Madsen Gallery, “Fresh” Santa Monica, CA
2012 Axiom Contemporary Gallery, Santa Monica, LA, CA
2011 Haven Gallery, Austin, TX
2011 LIMA, Las Vegas, NV
2010 Coppola Art Exchange, Beverly Hills, CA
2010 Downtown Art Walk, Los Angeles, CA
2009 Phantom Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
2008 Salon Oblique, Venice, CA
2008 Wally Workman Gallery, Austin, TX 
2007 Wally Workman Gallery, Austin, TX 
2007 Gables Art Gallery, Austin, TX 
2004 Experience Music Project, Seattle, WA 
2004 Memphis Brooks Museum, Memphis TN 
2004 Acadiana Museum, Lafayette, LA 
2004 Track 16 Gallery, Bergamont Station, Santa Monica,CA 
2003 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Clevland, OH 
2003 Slave, Erotica Art Show, Venice, CA 
2003 Art Walk, Venice, CA 
2002 Art Walk, Venice, CA 
2002 Red Room Gallery, Venice, CA 
2001 Art Walk, Venice, CA 
2000 The Millennium Show, Seole, Korea 
1999 POP Exhibit, Tokyo, Japan 
1999 Society of Illlustrators, Los Angeles, CA 
1998 New York Art Director’s Club, New York, NY 
1998 Letterwork, London, England 
1998 Goldstrom Gallery, Surrealist,  New York, NY 
1998 Goldstrom Gallery, Shoot Me,  New York, NY 
1997 Edgemar Complex, Mad River,  Santa Monica, CA 
1993 XX/O Gallery, Christmas Tree Show, Los Angeles, CA 
1992 Jacket Invitational, Passadena, CA 
1992 Houston Art Director’s Club, Houston, TX 
1990 Mezaluna, Brentwood, CA 
1989 Dougherty Art Center, Texas Artists, Austin, TX 
1988 11th Annual Art Alumni Exhibition, San Marcos, TX 
1987 Dougherty Art Center, Austin, TX 
1986 The Arts Warehouse, Texas 86, Austin, TX 
1986 Designer Space Gallery, Austin, TX 
1985 8th Annual Art Alumni Exhibition, San Marcos, TX 
1985 Data Gallery, Body Parts, Austin, TX 


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