A's profile

AZ was raised on the island of Guam from 1952 to 1963. In 1966 his family moved to the Panama Canal Zone where he began painting and exhibiting before graduating from high school. His initial influences were Chinese and Pre Colombian art, as well as his many explorations in Central American jungles. His original dream was to become an archeologist.

After graduation in 1990, he moved to MICA in Baltimore for his MFA. In that first semester he was hired to be the assistant to Salvatore Scarpitta, the Arte Povera sculptor with the Leo Castelli Gallery. Their relationship lasted ten years in which Sal took him to Italy five times, the last to install Sal's seventh solo at the Venice Bienalle. This opened the door to Allen's work being exhibited in Italy as well as being selected into the Pavilion of Contemporary Art in Milan, before it was leveled by a terrorist bomb. He exhibited in the Gomez Gallery in Baltimore and the Ace Gallery, New York, as well as multiple locations in France and Korea. Group shows in Egypt and India included his work. He has traveled to, or lived in 37 nations thus far.

Allen taught sculpture and drawing at the Maryland Institute College of Art for twenty years before retiring from teaching. During that time he also taught at Towson University and Anne Arundel Community College and lectured in other Maryland colleges. Currently he teaches art privately. He has also mentored individuals one-on-one for 32 years and has served in Baltimore's downtown jail system as well as in a men's half way house.

Twice he’s been awarded the Pollock-Krasner Fellowship, along with four MD State grants, among other awards. In 2003-04 he was selected as a Senior Fulbright Scholar to Sung Kyun Kwan University in Seoul, Korea for one year and initiated MICA's exchange program. During that time he traveled to Japan to research Korea's historic impact on the early development of Japanese aesthetics. He was also invited to lecture at China's Central Academy in Beijing, as well as multiple locations in Korea. 

Residencies include Succat Hallel in Jerusalem in 2019, TAC at the Tannery in Santa Cruz, CA- 2017, Ireland in 2015 and in 2014 at the Tyrone Guthrie Center. Others include Chateau Rochefort-en-Terre in Brittany, France, the Marie Walsh Sharpe Space Program in NYC, Sculpture Space and the Vermont Studio Program.

A's Curated Collection

View A's favorite works from other Baker Artists