Born in the fall of 1981, Allen Killian-Moore is a multidisciplinary neurodivergent artist working in wet plate collodion, moving image, curation, performance, and writing. His work often explores the tension between harmony and disharmony in many forms—individual and collective, social and political, life and death. To all of his work, Allen brings his own neurodivergent outsider perspective.
In 2022, Allen received an Individual Artist Grant from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council and in the fall of 2018, he was an Artist In Residence at the North Dakota Museum of Art. He was the recipient of a Career Development Grant that same year. Allen’s work has been exhibited in exhibitions at a wide variety of venues, including Joseph Nease Gallery, Hennepin Theater Trust, Duluth Art Institute, and FIB Gallery in Chicago.
Allen’s wet plate collodion work is multidimensional. His project based collodion work exists in a socially engaged context and he is interested in the way that photographic portraiture may radically center images of those who’ve been denigrated, excluded, or oppressed. He utilizes a victorian era photochemical process to create socially aware studio portraiture which is deployed to artfully elevate difference to the level of compelling visual signifiers. As the wet plate process is both a science and an art, it is highly controlled yet entails collaboration with chance. Thus, there are visual imperfections inherent to the process which lend it a potent aesthetic variety, and its actinic (blue/uv light sensitive) likenesses call out for recognition from their hand-varnished, physical surfaces. Additionally, Allen continues work on an evolving series of collodion proto-animations, transmogrifying sequenced handmade analog tintypes into final looped digital works on video. Finally, his ongoing wet plate collodion project Contemporary Vernacular Paradox features community sourced portrait sessions which are an amalgam of contemporary fine art photography and vernacular photography, ultimately intended not for public regard but for private personal viewing.