Episode 4: Pamella Allen: Creating Space

I loved re-connecting with Pamella Allen! She has always been an artist. Her love for teaching came when she was managing a bush camp in Malawi and decided to volunteer at the local school. From there, she went on to teach in India after an artist residency there moved her to get involved in the community, and then in NYC where I met her. She has taught all ages and continues to teach as a teaching artist for several non-profit organizations working in schools and senior centers. We met when I helped manage art education programs for the Brooklyn Arts Council and got to visit her classrooms to see her in action. It was such a pleasure hearing more about her background and her artwork! 

Pamella creating a ceiling mural commissioned for the patient rooms at Bellevue Hospital, July, 2019 

I loved what Pamella said about creating space – space for making art, for looking at art, for sharing ideas. Space for healing, for connecting with nature and with each other. That is soooo needed right now! 

She also mentioned teaching art with no supplies – zero! Nothing! She drew in the dirt with her students. How apt is that?  as art teachers everywhere try to figure out how to teach online to students who may have no supplies.

Ella 3, 22×28, Acrylic & mixed media on canvas, 2020

Pamella Allen is a Jamaica born, Brooklyn based artist who uses artifacts from her own life experiences pulled out of the chaos of memory and observation. Pamella’s work is layered in process. Mixed media paintings, printmaking, sculpture, paper making, installation, photography, video, essay, and prose combine to create her own archetype, a universal language of images found and remembered that speaks to the diversity of her Jamaican/African heritage and lived experiences traveling the world over land and sea. Pamella has been traveling the world and producing art for over 25 years. She has participated in traditional studio residencies, created commissions for corporate and private collectors, curated art exhibitions, and shared her arts process in underserved communities in Africa, India, and New York.


Electric, 44×48, Acrylic & mixed media on canvas
Me Mandala, 30×46, Acrylic, sand, silk and mixed media on canvas, 2018
Super Nova, 40×40, Acrylic, volcanic sand, and mixed media on paper, 2018 (In Private Collection)
Detail of Super Nova, 40×40, Acrylic, volcanic sand, and mixed media on paper, 2018
Teaching in NYC
Teaching in New Delhi
Mandalas by Students