Photo by John Deakin
|Birth Date: July 9, 1919
|Death Date: December 21, 1963
|Carlyle Brown was raised in Los Angeles, California. He attended the Rudolph Schaeffer School of Design in San Francisco from 1939 to 1940. Several years later, he served in the U.S. Navy, and he continued to draw and sketch during his naval service. During his Navy service he wrote a fan letter to the Russian painter Pavel Tchelitchew, who had immigrated to New York City just before the outbreak of WWII. Brown’s letter initiated a very intense relationship, with numerous letters exchanged during the four years of service. Tchelitchew urged Brown to draw as much as possible and to experiment with different methods of artistic creation. Their correspondence confirmed the mentoring influence that Brown already felt from Tcheltichew’s art.
At the beginning of 1946, encouraged by Tchelitchew, Brown moved to New York City, residing first at the Hotel Seville and later on in a studio near Gramercy Park. He immediately immersed himself in the New York scene, meeting numerous artists and personalities. It was here that he accepted commissions from organizations in the fashion industry, such as Harper’s Bazaar. Throughout the fashion world his work became popular; in 1947 he married Margery Hulett, who was in New York modeling for Vogue. They became world travelers, always returning to their apartment in New York City.
Later, Brown moved his family abroad to Rome, Italy to create work within the artistic community in the Via Margutta. Through the influence of his travels abroad, Brown transitioned from painting the human figure to favoring still-life subjects such as bottles of wine, lemons, eggs, loaves of bread, and flowers set against Italian landscapes. Brown’s body of work features three dimensional objects in European landscapes with surreal qualities, such as organic and textured shapes.
Brown participated in many shows during his lifetime, such as exhibitions at the Catherine Viviano Gallery and the Corcoran Art Gallery in Washington. His works have also been collected by notable museums and galleries such as the Whitney Museum of American Art.