RIP Edward F. Crowell II – A Miami Artist

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The youthful rebellion of a free spirit. From the artist’s Facebook page.

This past weekend, the Miami art scene was rocked by the sudden death of artist Edward F. Crowell II. A well-liked young man that had been steadily endearing himself to South Florida’s art scene, Crowell embodied a rare combination of respect and admiration from his peers. No easy feat in Miami’s often competitive and back-stabby art scene. Self-taught and emboldened by the balls-out guts of such a spirit where one calls their shots, Crowell spent close to 20 years perfecting his craft on canvas as well as writing poetry and recording some interesting lo-fi hip-hop that further fomented the myth of his outsider status.

Because outsider he was, at least for a little while, and that’s a good thing, because only an outsider from Alabama – borne of the cradle of the Civil Rights movement – could understand the frailties and horrors of the human condition. I’ve already written a piece on him here that you can check out. Right here, right now, we’ll celebrate his work with a few images of his paintings from his Facebook page with permission from his sister Erin Crowell, who had this to say about her brother: “We have to do whatever it is in life that makes us happy. My brother taught me that. He lived a very passionate filled life. And always did things his way.”

The job of an artist is to make us reassess and refocus what we bring to life through art, that’s how art is a mirror. Edward F. Crowell II is survived by his loving family and friends. South Florida is that much richer because of his choosing to live and work here. Crowell’s primitivism and text-guided abstract expressions via pop art captured the distilled essence of South Florida’s chameleonic nature where disparities and contradictions are allowed to coexist symbiotically. A spirit such as his might’ve been taken away from us in a motorcycle accident by a person who ran a stop sign, corporeally yes, but ephemerally; his spirit will live on forever.

In celebration of an indomitable spirit, here are some images for you to enjoy and remember him by.

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Abel Folgar

Scoundrel, bon vivant, rocanrolero, fútbol cretin... giving into flights of poesy whenever the whiskey's free. Caracas, VZ/Miami, FL. Follow me on Twitter @abelf77.

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