After a short break, we are bringing back the collection highlights series! Today’s highlight is Joshua Cowell’s painting, Aleese, from the 2015 Juried Show. 

Aleese was made as part of a portrait series of people the artist was close to at the time. Although this painting is largely representational, Cowell has since taken more of an abstract approach to art making, and his work has “transformed into a more expressive retelling of commonality and day-to-day life.” 

You can check out his work on Instagram @cowelljoshua and at where his work is available for purchase through the Scout Gallery!

Aleese was displayed in the Fireside Lounge from 2016 until it was switched out with another collection piece, Kobena E. AlaKetu’s Urban Mosaic, in 2018. It is currently off-view and stored in our collections space.

Joshua Cowell


Oil on canvas


Visual Description: 

An oil painting of a figure from the waist up, who has light yellow-blonde hair in a bun. The figure wears a bright red tank top and is looking down to the left corner of the canvas (from the viewer’s point of view). The figure is painted from an angle that is slightly above, highlighting their head and shoulders but leaving their waist in shadow. Although it is clear that the figure is a person, the paint has been applied in whispy layers of color which create a softening and painterly effect. The background is done in brushy strokes of various hues of blue and purple.