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Documenting Joy Brown's Journey

Updated: May 25

Charlottesville, Virginia -- We are pleased to announce a new collaboration with Rawvision Studio in China to document the final stages of Joy Brown's monumental sculptures in Shanghai. This project not only captures the artistic process but also delves into the deep connections between Joy Brown and China.

Photo by Eduardo Montes-Bradley
Born in China, now in Dave Matthews Collection in Virginia | Photo by Eduardo Montes-Bradley

Joy Brown’s relationship with China is rooted in her family's history. Her grandparents met there as missionaries, and her father was born in China. The Brown family's presence in the country spans significant historical events, from the Japanese invasion to the political transformations leading to the 1949 Revolution. This rich heritage has profoundly influenced Joy's work just as her enduring connection to Japan does.

Joy Brown and Eduardo Montes-Bradley
Women and children taking refuge with the Brown family during the Japanese occupation in 1937

To document this intricate process with minimal disruption, we have teamed up with Liang Dong, a seasoned filmmaker and photographer renowned for his design and spatial awareness. Liang's expertise will ensure that we capture both the creative atmosphere and the human elements involved in crafting these monumental sculptures, affectionately referred to as "Joy’s ladies."

Joy Brown, Eduardo Montes-Bradley
At work with Joy's monumental figures. Photo by Dong Liang

Documenting Joy Brown's Sculptural Journey: Filming will begin near Shanghai on Monday. We look forward to sharing updates and images from this extraordinary journey. Stay tuned and share this with your art-loving friends.


Joy Brown by Eduardo Montes-Bradley is a documentary that delves into the life and work of an American sculptor with profound connections to the ancient traditions of China and Japan.

From her home-studio in Connecticut, Joy Brown reflects on the early influences in the East, and the experiences of her missionary parents and grandparents in China and Japan. Raised between these two cultures, Joy incorporates their elements into her art, creating powerful pieces that mirror human nature in bas-reliefs, panels, murals, and statues made in clay and bronze.

Over three years, Montes-Bradley integrates himself into Joy's creative process, capturing the collaborative spirit around her kiln in Kent, Connecticut. The film features voices of Joy's closest collaborators, an it also journeys to the mountains of Wakayama, revealing Joy’s master Mr. Shige Morioka at work, and follows Joy to the studio near Shanghai, where her monumental bronze sculptures are brought to life by a dedicated team of artisans.

Joy Brown offers a portrait of an artist with a passion for simplified human forms and a humanized vision of nature, set for festival circuit submissions this Fall.

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