Howard Behrens was born in Chicago, Illinois in 1933. He turned to painting to pass the time when, at 17 years old, he was bedridden after breaking his leg in a sledding accident. He eventually earned his Master's Degree in painting and sculpture from the University of Maryland.
He painted tirelessly in his studio at his Northeastern home, working quickly and boldly, to avoid approaches he described as "over-calculated" or too "computerized." To fully appreciate the work of Howard Behrens it is crucial to understand his use of the palette knife. It lends itself to boldness rather than subtlety - revealing its secrets slowly, and only to those with patience and persistence. However, for the few intrepid artists, it will deliver the most thrilling of results. Behrens was one of those select few.
When he wasn't painting, Behrens pursued other interests with equal fervor including thoroughbred horse racing, model trains, and, of course, trips to the shore. Traveling was a passion for Behrens. The shore can be anywhere - Bethany Beach in Delaware or Santorini in the Grecian Islands. He had a particular fondness for Lake Como, Italy. Of it he said, "I cannot but return again and again to this part of the world…each trip to Lake Como brings me new vistas, hidden gardens, and, most of all, new impressions…somehow the light is different here, the twilight seems to last longer on Lake Como." He was never far from the sea. On his trips to the seaside he always carried his camera. With his camera, he recorded the images that he would take to his studio to transform into paintings.
Howard Behrens passed away after his long battle with Parkinson's Disease on April 14, 2014. As an artist, he touched the hearts and souls of countless collectors who continue to cherish his extraordinary talent.