Cowan studied sculpture techniques – metal welding and bronze casting under Wyndham Lawrence. She also studied drawing and painting at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto. As an art specialist, she taught at both secondary and university levels.
Since 1967, her work participated in numerous solo and group exhibitions in Canada and Europe – including the Centennial Travelling Exhibition with the Provincial Council of Women; the Education Centre with Franklin Arbuckle; the Ontario Society of Artists; Brantford Art Centre; London Public Library and Art Museum; Canada Permanent Trust; Pennell Gallery; Sarnia Art Gallery; Art Gallery of Hamilton; Samuel J. Sacks Gallery, York University; Agnes Etherington Gallery, Queen’s University, where she also gave a lecture on Paul-Emile Borduas; McMichael Canadian Collection; Robson Square Media Centre, Vancouver B.C. Travelling exhibitions with Sculpture Canada included London, Brussels, and Paris. In the Dimension Four Exhibition, she was awarded the Augusts Kopmanis Memorial Award.
Cowan’s work was represented by Diogenes International Galleries, Athens, Greece; Wayne Gallery, Windsor, ON; and Atlantic Art Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Her work is included in private collections in Toronto, New York, Athens, and Mexico City; and in public collections in London and Oshawa.
Cowan was elected into the SSC in 1970 and served as president from 1983 – 1985. She co-founded and curated the Permanent Collection of Sculptors Society of Canada, but it had discontinued due to funding restraints.
I believe the role of the artist should be to interpret life in every medium accessible and available to people. Using the lost wax technique, I appreciated the timelessness of bronze and because it gave a sense of permanence in a changing world.