After dropping out of Rhode Island School of Design at age 19, Speed spent her twenties moving around the U.S. and Canada working pick-up jobs (house painter, horse trainer, ad writer, farm worker etc.) until moving to Texas in 1978 where she settled down and became a full-time artist. She now works out of a former jail in Marfa, where she switches back and forth regularly between oil and gouache painting, collage, printmaking, assemblage and drawing, often combining disciplines.
Over the past 25 years Speed has had well over 50 solo museum and gallery shows. In addition to the numerous catalogs for those shows, her work has been the subject of several television and film projects and two large monographs, Julie Speed, Paintings, Constructions and Works on Paper and Speed, Art 2003-2009, both published by the University of Texas Press.
The Pirate Queen. 30/50. Etching with chine collé, individually tattooed with gouache, varied edition of 50, 12.25 x 15.75 inches
Launch II. 8/25. Hand-colored etching with chine collé on paper, 18.25 x 13.75 inches