Allen Smith - Painting Outside the Senses

Our featured artist for September is Allen Smith, an abstract painter and art instructor from the Rogue Valley, who has earned both Bachelor of Fine Arts and Master of Teaching Arts degrees.

In addition, Smith was Artist in residence at Contem-porary Artists Center Wood-side, Troy, New York and was voted Rookie Art Educator of the Year, by the Oregon Art Education Association in 2014.

While Smith looks to nature and natural landscapes for inspiration, his current work is abstract and meta-physical—a search to 􀀀ind much broader and perhaps more profound meaning in art.

Smith explains it this way: “I am humbly seeking to build on themes that Kandinsky,Mondrian, Rothko, and Newman explored in theirpaintings —sublime art that seeks spiritual truth. At the risk of making art that isesoteric and arrogant, I truly think the series I’m working on can effectively illustrate the concept of noumena, have a spiritual impact, and connect with a wide audience.”

This is expressed in Smith’s PBAA show titled, “Noumenon.” According to Smith, noumenon refers to “an object or event outside the detection of the senses; itself inaccessible to experience, to which a phenomenon is referred for the basis of its sense content; a posited object or event that is known (if at all) without the use of the senses.”

In other words, Smith is trying to use his art to express something beyond what we normally see, feel, etc., yet something that could be true on a metaphysical or spiritual level.

“I understand that making paintings about noumena is a contradiction; paintings are viewed and therefore phenomena, but I am con􀀀ident in their merit. The work is sincere and comes from a deep and cherished sense of wonder at our existence,” explains Smith.

See for yourself what Smith is trying to achieve. It will be visible in the gallery all through September. And for more on Smith, visit his web-site at

433 Oak Street, Brookings, OR 97415  *  Mail to: PO Box 2568 Brookings, OR 97415

Pelican Bay Arts Association at Manley Art Center & Gallery   *