Carolyn Beegan didn’t declare herself an artist until 1994 when she gave up a successful career as a systems analyst in the oil industry. After five years of working and showing in Manhattan, she moved to Sag Harbor, New York to paint full time.
A summa cum laude graduate of Manhattan College with a degree in computer science, her first exposure to art was the religious imagery that surrounded her in the sixteen years she spent in parochial schools. Her strict Irish Catholic upbringing is strongly manifested in much of her earlier paintings, including studies of religious iconography, fragments of a Sistine Chapel-like mural, and self-portraits of the artist as the Madonna. Her family ties to Ireland remain strong and she maintains both U.S. and Irish passports.
Although she studied at the Art Students League in Manhattan, Ms Beegan is primarily self-taught. She has traveled much of the globe—alone, with friends, and with rock bands — and currently resides most of the year in Cape Town, South Africa. She is curious, adventuresome and sybaritic, in steadfast pursuit of good food, wine, interesting encounters, and creative inspiration. In her travels she has filled scores of notebooks with sketches and drawings that illuminate her work.
A sense of texture and tactility distinguishes much of her art, as evidenced in many of her oil paintings. Her mixed media work — layers of paint, pencil, charcoal, marker, and computer-generated images (a small irony since she once swore-off the use of computers) are similarly layered and tactile. In the late 1990s she introduced her most controversial paintings called The Body Politic, a Georgia O’Keefe-like series of biomorphic self-portraits of her uterus based on internal photographs of Ms Beegan taken by her surgeon. Her personal philosophy of life is perhaps best embodied by her still life series of farm stand spoils: The paintings spill over the large canvases, literally overflowing with bounty, leaving little negative space.
Her esprit de vivre has inspired songs to be written about her, boats to be named after her, and a waltz dedicated to Lola, her Pug dog. Her work has been shown extensively in galleries in SoHo and Chelsea as well as throughout the East End of Long Island. Her art is in the collections of John Eastman, Larry Gagosian, Don Henley, Billy Joel, Elton John and Ron Perelman.
FINE ART - OIL PAINTING - MIXED MEDIA - PHOTOGRAPHY - PRINTS