Sonia Allen

Sonia Allen
Painting and Printmaking


About the ArtistAllen_self-1

Sonia Allen spent six years of her childhood in the Caribbean surrounded by tropical nature and vibrant Puerto Rican history and culture. The capital city’s 16th century blue paving stones said, “Let color surprise you.” The ever changing beach sang, “Notice details.” Her grandfather’s tree branch ink drawings intrigued her, and there began the joy of drawing and a love affair with color.

First studying painting and printmaking, Sonia switched to the health care field, earning a Master’s degree from the University of Northern Colorado and working as an audiologist. While raising her children, she returned to art as a watercolorist. Painting led back to printmaking, and for the past 15 years she has worked in monotypes. Sonia teaches locally for Salem Art Association’s Community Arts Education program, Hallie Ford Museum of Art, and private and group sessions. Stateside and abroad, she facilitates art workshops and has brought art experiences to underprivileged and street children in Brazil.

Travel provides visual food for thought, and Sonia’s sketchbook journal is a constant companion. She draws inspiration from Vincent Van Gogh, John Marin, J.M.W. Turner, Paul Klee and Marc Chagall. Color, surprise, mystery and story telling are common threads in their work and what Sonia seeks to express in hers.

Sonia joined Lunaria Gallery in 2014.

Artist Statement

J.M.W. Turner transformed conventional landscape painting with his semi-abstract layered paintings. I, too love interpreting a landscape through the lens of imagination. Van Gogh and John Marin influence my layering and color use, and I love the color, whimsy and storytelling of Paul Klee and Marc Chagall.

My artwork explores the beauty of the unexpected, whether found in nature, travel or everyday interactions. I build my paintings and monotypes in layers of positive and negative images yielding ethereal and evocative works. Drawing and painting offer an immediacy of medium. Printmaking is a marriage of technique and magic, and my monotypes stand with my paintings as one of a kind original works.

Natural forms frequently occur in my art. Often there is a sense of mystery, of invitation to look into or beyond the image. Do you see layers in this imagery? Do you notice a story taking shape? Perfect. Keep looking. I believe we have been given an astonishing beauty in this world and in its people. My goal is to call the viewer to look deeply into the humble things we take for granted and to see treasure.