Terry Allen is a visual artist and songwriter who was raised in Lubbock, Texas. He graduated from Chouinard Art Inst. in Los Angeles and has worked as an artist & musician since 1966. He has received numerous awards and honors including a Guggenheim Fellowship and National Endowment for the Art Fellowships; Awards for the Visual Arts (AVA), Washington D.C.; Bessie (New York) and Isadora Duncan (San Francisco) Critic Awards for text, music, sets, costumes for PEDAL STEAL (Margaret Jenkins Dance Co.); AICA Award 2004, 2nd place (International Association of Art Critics) for Best Show in Commerical Gallery, for DUGOUT I, LA Louver Gallery, Venice, CA, curated by Peter Goulds; Induction into the Buddy Holly Walk of Fame in 1992; United States Artists Oliver Fellow, 2009.
His work has been shown throughout the United States and Inter-nationally, including Documenta and San Paolo, Paris, Sydney & Whitney Biennales and is represented in major private and public collections, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Modern Art in New York, Hirshhorn Museum in Washington DC, The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) and L.A. County Museum of Art in Los Angeles, Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego (MCASD) and Houston & Dallas Museums of Fine Art. His numerous public commissions can be found in such places as L.A.'s Citi-Corps Plaza, San Francisco Moscone Center, The Stuart Collection at UCSD in La Jolla, CA, Oliver Ranch in Sonoma, CA and Denver, Houston and Dallas/Ft. Worth Intercontinental airports. His book & theater piece DUGOUT was published in 2005 by Univ. of Texas Press and an extensive monograph TERRY ALLEN of Allen's work was published in 2010, also Univ. Texas Press, with essays by Dave Hickey, Marcia Tucker and Michael Ventura.
He has written for and worked in both radio and theater. Some of his selected staged works include JUAREZ(A SIMPLE STORY), THE EMBRACE...ADVANCED TO FURY, ANTI-RABBIT BLEEDER, WARBOY (AND THE BACKBOARD BLUES), GHOST SHIP RODEZ which he wrote and directed; PIONEER, set design, co-written with Jo Harvey Allen & Rende Eckert, directed by Robert Woodruff, Paul Dresser Production, performed throughout USA; LEON AND LENA (and Lentz), composer, directed by JoAnne Akalaitis, Guthrie Theater, Minneapolis, MN; CHIPPY, Diaries of a West Texas Hooker, set & costume design, co-written with Jo Harvey Allen, music co-written with Joe Ely, Butch Hancock, directed by Evan Yianoulis, co-produced by American Music Theater Festival, Philadelphia, PA & Lincoln Center's 'Serious Fun' series, New York, NY.
Allen has recorded 12 albums of original songs, including classics JUAREZ and LUBBOCK (on everything), and his most recent BOTTOM OF THE WORLD. His songs have been recorded by such diverse artists as: Bobby Bare, Guy Clark, Little Feat, Robert Earl Keen, David Byrne, Colin Gilmore, Doug Sahm, Ricky Nelson, Cracker, and Lucinda Williams. He has written numerous songs for film and theater, including the music soundtrack for Jane Anderson's Showtime Emmy nominated THE BABY DANCE. He has been described by critic Dave Hickey in the Los Angeles Times as "a true modern day renaissance man...renowned for his effortless command and outrageous combination of disparate genres and media, according to the task at hand." Terry Allen lives and works in Santa Fe, New Mexico, with his wife, actress and writer, Jo Harvey Allen.