Born 1952 in Detroit Michigan, Doug Britt moved shortly after his birth to the east coast of Virginia, growing up on a remote beach with four brothers. His architect father set the inspiring stage for the isolated boys. They were constantly drawing and creating; collecting ocean debris gave them an endless amount of material to build forts and boats. Doug spent all his days in or on the Atlantic ocean until he ran away from high school to surf in Hawaii. He returned a week later, but his master plan was to live in the islands someday.
In 1972, Doug entered the Coast Guard. After boot camp, he was finally stationed in Hawaii and spent long stretches in the open Pacific ocean. At an early age of 22, Doug was diagnosed with terminal cancer. After nearly a year at Letterman Medical Hospital in San Francisco he began to heal.
Returning to Hawaii in 1974, Doug entered Maui Community College to study art, thus beginning his adult commitment to art. With the help of a GI bill in 1976, he entered San Francisco Art Institute, where he graduated with honors in 1979. He was accepted into a masters program at U.C. Irvine, but Hawaii was calling again. After graduating from SFAI, he moved back, for good, this time in Haena on the island of Kauai. He built a small artist house from the remains of the old Club Med above Hanalei Bay.
Britt, mostly withdrawn from the art world, continues to paint and exhibit his work. His fascination with living a creative life on a remote island subliminally finds its way in his often abstract imagery. His paintings incorporating the jet-age icons of Hawaii are riddled with undertones of playfulness and humor, always exploring the contradictions of island life. The coming and going of people on planes and ships all searching to experience paradise inspire great titles like: “window seat for everyone,” “tropical approach,” and “the world will turn.”
When he is not in his painting studio he is constructing objects out of humble, discarded material found on the beach or in junk stores. The uniquely playful ships and planes he is known for building are rooted in his boyhood life.