Who is C. Downing? Charles Downing Fletcher (b. 1968) grew up in a small town in the northwest suburbs of Philadelphia. He went to college at East Carolina University, graduating a Master’s degree in physical sciences. C. Downing was first exposed to the bohemian arts community while exploring his interests in science as an undergraduate and carried those experiences with him to the University of South Carolina, where he studied doctorate-level digital imaging processing and advanced analytic techniques. Following the death of his mother in 2000, C. Downing dropped out of the University of South Carolina, to accept a position with the Executive Branch of the Federal Government doing creative analytic imaging work.
C. Downing’s art speaks to his struggle to maintain personal relationships, often becoming his only outlet around complex social insecurities for self-expression. At times, his public work represents a private exercise in developing empathy and impulse control with anonymous individuals. Human behavior, including his own, is fundamentally interesting to him as an artist.
C. Downing considered himself a reasonable product of the isolated US white-middle-class for most of his young adult life. But it was his second wife, a remarkable black woman, who challenged him to reconsider many assumptions about himself and others. His personal learning curve about black culture and the global struggle of brown people now guide his artistic direction and message. A near death experience in 2016 galvanized his commitment to focus his life on things that matter and self-actualization.
C. Downing is an accomplished Washington DC photographer living in the metro area with his beautiful family of three children. He also owns Rush Street Gallery, a digital exhibition of contemporary artistic photography. In addition to his photo work with the Federal Government’s Executive Office, he was published in Art Tour International's 2015 Top 60 Masters of Contemporary Art. C. Downing also won the 2015 American Art Awards as well the professional category in the NY publication, Creative Quarterly Journal of Art and Design v 41. In 2016, he had two pieces accepted for exhibition at the Biggs Museum of American Art in Dover DE. In addition to publishing in professional and academic art journals, his work has been shown in many east coast galleries. More examples can be seen on this web site www.beonfilm.com.