“You never forget where you came from, even if you don’t stay there. Our stories have to propel us forward. It’s the only thing we can do—just keep moving forward”.
- Courtney J. Garrett
For over a decade, Courtney J Garrett has blurred the lines of past and present through varying choices in mediums. Her fascination of the southern vernacular through photographic works, oil painting, and other experimental methods is based on a universal nostalgia. Believing that memory is the most unifying concept of humanity, her current work seeks to push past the boundaries of comfort. The result is a dreamlike work that often feels “undone” and difficult.
“Courtney’s images highlight a seemingly insignificant experience. Whether it is a white farm house that reminds you of a roadside landmark or a one-room church that conjures up the sound of your grandmother’s singing voice—Courtney’s images are haunting in their ability to remind you, and in some ways glorify, buried images from your past.” – Mary Katherine Stump, author, Thicket magazine, March- April 2009
Garrett is collected around the world in both private and corporate collections. Notably, her work was chosen by the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund to create the Foundation’s first historically documented international series, translating the life and work of activist Dian Fossey using a mixed-media process. Her international influence continued beyond 2010 with an opening at the Artist Project NYC, where her work earned multiple shows in Taipei and Greece. In 2011, she opened at The Heritage Museum in Tarpon Springs, Florida representing American Art in a Greek-American exhibition.
“When she unveiled the pieces and proceeded to describe them, we were speechless… What she did was take something as simple and everyday as the horizon and turn it into a powerful, emotive image.” – Debra Lewis, managing partner Balch and Bingham Law firm, Corporate Collection
In 2014, her work reached new height’s with the Alan Avery Art Company, at the opening of “Skylight - Landscapes: Traditional and Contemporary” at the Oglethorpe University Museum of Art, in Atlanta, GA. At the OUMA exhibition, Garrett represented 21st Century landscape abstraction as an evolutionary link from traditional masters.
“I have stopped believing in photo-realism as a means to satisfy the viewer—-but it is in true abstraction that captures the very changing photographic nature of everything.”
Courtney J. Garrett was born and raised in rural Alabama. Her mother was a southern tole painter and her father, a draftsman. She received an undergraduate degree from Auburn University and currently resides with her husband and children in Nashville, TN.