Willard Andre Allen is a self-taught artist from New England. Born in 1965, he is a graduate of the Art Institute of America where he received his Associate Degree in Advertising and Marketing . Andre never knew that he had talent in fine art. Although he had been exposed to the performing arts from an early age, travelling on tour with family and other prolific artists and working in advertising and marketing in the music industry, becoming an artist himself was not something he had ever contemplated. But one day, he went to an African-American Exposition where he saw exquisite African motifs, intricately painted on glassware: It was then that he received his Muse to embark on his journey to create fine art. Instantly inspired, he went out and bought ten, clear glass plates and enrolled in his first painting class at the South Florida Art Center in 2000. He diligently learned to work with acrylics and studied the complexity of figurative painting and soon after, he realized his tremendous affinity for color and design. He perfected his craft on glass and further experimented with African ornamental design and portraits at home, incorporating glass plates as his template. He continued to reference myriad books on African masks and motifs and through trial and error, he discovered a unique style and voice of his own. Andre is a visionary: His pieces are intricate, provocative and imaginative, both in design and execution. By painting on the opposite side of clear glass, he demonstrates an intuitive understanding and appreciation of myriad shape and texture where each design results in a cornucopia of colors that incorporate and reflect light once the glass is turned over to its rightful side. His designs aren’t contrite or pre-planned. Instead they are evoked through his emotions and instincts whereby each piece induces a different feeling, a certain softness and compassion, emerging as a one-of-a kind work of art that captivates the inspiration of the moment. Andre continues to truly break grounds. Functional, decorative and modern, his variously shaped glass artworks have garnished him instant recognition as one of the most outstanding new talent among Miami’s artistic community. His works can presently be seen at American Glass Art Work Gallery in SoHo New York as well as the Bergman Collection in Washington DC. He currently has a studio at 810 Lincoln Road at The Art Center South Florida Studio #206 and resides in South Beach, Florida
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