Chicago-based artist, teacher and curator, Joyce Owens Anderson was born on July 1, 1947 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. She grew up in a working class neighborhood in Philadelphia. Owens’ mother, Eloise Owens, was a trained opera singer, who encouraged her daughter to become an art teacher. Nevertheless, Owens attended Howard University, where she earned her B.F.A. degree in art.
Owens attended Yale University, earning her M.F.A. degree, also in painting. After working various jobs, including arts and crafts director, art teacher and producer for Philadelphia’s CBS television’s owned and operated station, Owens moved to Chicago, Illinois. She then spent eight years working for WBBM-CBS2 TV News in Chicago as the Graphic Arts Coordinator for news. Owens did additional work for the company as a graphic artist, researcher and news assistant, all the time painting and exhibiting her art.
After Owens had a solo exhibition at Chicago State University she was invited to join the faculty and has taught there since 1996, specializing in studio painting and drawing. Joyce Owens is known for addressing issues around racism, skin color and black self determination through her paintings, masks, and installations. Her art materials are primarily acrylic paints on canvas, wood, and paper; found objects are often incorporated into her two- and three-dimensional works. Owens’ artwork has been shown in juried and invitational, solo and group exhibitions in galleries and museums, nationally. Two of her curatorial efforts were singled out by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs as featured programs during Chicago Artists Month. Some other highlights of her career include being selected the featured artist for Columbia College’s fifteenth annual DanceAfrica Chicago Festival, inclusion in Daniel T. Parker’s book African Art: The Diaspora and Beyond, “The Art of Culture” exhibition and catalog that also featured artist/art historian, Samella Lewis, and Howard University’s “A Proud Continuum: Eight Decades of Art at Howard University” a juried exhibition of former Howard art students including Elizabeth Catlett.