Joe MacGown (aka Neogothic-Jam) was born in 1964 in Maine and moved to Mississippi when he was ten. His interest in art began early and as a child, he spent his time collecting insects, exploring nature, and drawing everything in sight. MacGown attended the Memphis College of Art for a while but it didn’t stick. Instead, for a few years, he worked the night shift at a grocery store and did some freelance artwork on the side. Since 1988, MacGown has worked at the Mississippi State Entomological Museum as a scientific illustrator and assistant curator.
MacGown’s true interest is in the “interrelationship of the environment and all forms of the animate and inanimate” and says “As I have studied nature over the course of my life, I have come to realize that every little thing we do affects something else, whether it be negative or positive. I greatly enjoy playing with positive and negative space, the juxtaposition of seemingly unnatural elements, and filling an area with as much as possible.” MacGown describes his style as “neogothic surrealism or subconscious meandering… a blend of fantasy, surrealism, and visionary art.”