Aimée Henny Brown, an artist and educator of settler ancestry, completed her BFA at the University of Alberta and obtained her Master’s in Fine and Media Arts at NSCAD University. Aimée’s artistic practice engages archives, research, and printed matter to question historical content within her contemporary art practice. She has received several awards and grants, notably the Joseph Beuys Scholarship for Artistic Merit and several Canada Council Production Grants. Her collages, drawings, performances and bookworks have been presented nationally and internationally, with group shows in Kyoto, Germany, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, and solo exhibitions across Canada. She has attended numerous artist residencies in North America and presents regularly to artists, students, and international audiences.  Represented by the Vancouver Art Gallery Art Rental and Sales program and Ian Tan’s Online Art Gallery (OAG), Aimée is an Assistant Professor: foundations, 3D and extended media with the University of the Fraser Valley.

Instagram: @aimeehennybrown


As a project-based artist, I activate printed matter in flat, spatial, and time sensitive manners.  Archives, historical documents, and photo-based media are investigated through the practice and methodology of collage.  Analogue collage – cut and paste - encourages a liminal space where print and paper transcend their material qualities and shift from their initial meanings. My practice addresses both the history and fate of printed matter as tangible elements in a virtual era.  One of the fundamental questions of my practice lies between discussions of the everyday and the spectacular: “How will we survive the present and what could the future look like?”

Inspired by architectural structures and traditional landscape photography, my collage works are assembled from hand-cut, 20th century paper publications.  Close observation of light, shadow, colour, and resolution of printed matter from this era inform the meticulous components and compositions. I choose collage as a way of making so that I can challenge recorded histories and re-envision known terrains.  At once wistful and futuristic, my work proposes future-scapes and new worlds, often beyond the presence of human figures.  These composite sites, constructed from recognizable photographic elements, become immersive, unfamiliar prospects; new ruins and possible futures.  

Aimée Henny Brown

When was the first time you felt like you were an artist?

When I was in high school, I would finish all my other homework and then spend hours working on drawings in my room. I was so excited to make simple, observed objects come to life on the paper, but in wildly different scale or color. The act of drawing felt very powerful, and I wanted a career where I could connect to that feeling regularly. It was a time where I was discovering and sharpening my skillset, but also realizing I wanted to spend as much time as possible making and thinking about art.

What would you say is the underlying thread that connects your work?

Analogue collage as not only a medium, but as a way of thinking and making decisions is an important through-line in my work. The act of cutting and editing, choosing absence or inclusion as a way to build content; collage is a way of making work that strives to create a greater whole than the sum of its individual parts. The desire to work in a form deeply linked to this concept keeps me connected to collage as a primary lens through which I consider all my ways of working.

What is the most satisfying part of your practice?

The moment of sifting through possible material, opening books, sorting pages, discovering new (to me) images, is so exciting. Finding a printed matter resource and KNOWING, FEELING that it has a lot of potential is so supremely satisfying, because at that moment the resource holds infinite possibility.

Tell us about a turning point in your artistic journey and/or career.

About 10 years ago, I hit a really challenging moment in my studio and teaching career. I had moved across the country for a contract job opportunity that was less sustainable than I had hoped, and I was no longer able to afford both my apartment and my studio rent. I applied for an artist-residency where I would be living in a converted forest ranger station for a year, living and making artwork in a small town in British Columbia. I was awarded the residency and the experience not only allowed me a ‘reset’ on my teaching and studio career, but also gave me space and time to explore collage, write grants, experiment with a variety of mediums, and set myself up for the next few years of artistic practice. There are so many extraordinary opportunities that came from my participation in the Ranger Station residency, I consider it to be one of the major pivot-points in my journey as an artist.

If you could show your work anywhere in the world, where would it be and why?

I am currently working on a mixed-media, collage series that is inspired by William Morris patterns. I would love to see this work shown in context at the William Morris Gallery or a gallery within the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. Exhibiting within these traditional museum spaces would provide an opportunity to place contemporary art and dialogue within the colonial histories of Morris pattern-works held in their collections.

Aimée Henny Brown
Aimée Henny Brown
Aimée Henny Brown