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The landscape format I use is imaginary. It welcomes the mind to another realm, like the place of dreams, where meaning and metaphor speak to a deeper part of the self. 



E L L I O T T  G R E E N   | | |   biography

[lives & works - New York, NY ::: b. 1960 - Detroit, MI]

ELLIOTT GREEN was born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1960. He moved to New York City in 1981 and lived there for twenty-four years. In 2005 he moved to Athens, New York, a small town situated between the Catskill Mountains and the Hudson River, where he continues to work and live. He has received a John Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, two Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grants, the Rome Prize, and three prizes and awards from the Academy of Arts and Letters, along with numerous residency grants. A book of his paintings, Elliott Green: At the Far Edge of the Known World, with essays by six writers, was published in late 2019. 

Artist Statement

My paintings bridge the genres of abstraction and landscape. They hold abstract improvisations arranged in a staged environment.  By abstraction, I mean shapes and colors and gestures in a configuration that intuitively cause an emotional resonance.

The landscape format I use is imaginary. It suggests a familiar atmosphere in the simplest way. Color at the top of the canvas blends from darker to lighter and sets the scene, so that abstract elements within that space seem plausible. It welcomes the mind to another realm, like the place of dreams, where meaning and metaphor speak to a deeper part of the self. 

My paintings are always unplanned and feel to me like they come out of nowhere, but the evidence in a long trail of work suggests that they emerge from a full range of life experiences. Lately it feels like they absorb moods from out of thin air, like seasonal colors, the weather, and news of world events that seep into the scenery.

These new paintings at the Ferrara Showman Gallery aspire to be even more ethereal than the ones shown here in 2018. Especially on the larger canvasses, where distant horizons extend further, and a viewer can feel like they are being lifted in flight over abundant vistas. 

In the zones where the heavens and earth converge, there is an active mingling of energies. Waveforms radiate upward. Mountain peaks reach up higher, and veils of fog drop like heavy curtains. Some areas of colorful activity flow like molten glass and light pulses through them in feathery segments.

This is how my work was described in the program for the 2021 ceremonial at the American Academy of Arts and Letters: 

“His euphoric paintings are all light and space one moment and paint and canvas the next. The fascinating conversation between abstraction and landscape is a mystery that the viewer can’t unravel. The paintings evoke the heroic by attempting the impossible. Belief and doubt duke it out, and our disappointment is replaced by exaltations.”
My intention as an artist has always been to animate inert materials into a spirited energy that can be seen and felt by receptive viewers. The description above is reassuring for me to know that the deep connection I hope for is actively happening.

Curriculum Vitae


1978-81 University of Michigan



2017      Pierogi, New York

2016      John Davis Gallery, Hudson, NY

2009      D’Amelio Terras, New York

2005      Singer Gallery, Denver, CO

2003      Tibor de Nagy Gallery, New York



2016      Studio10, Brooklyn, NY, “Narratives of Enigma”, with David Brody

              The Frank Institute at CR10, Linlithgo NY, Creation Stories, with Colin Gee

2010      Clough-Hanson Gallery, Rhodes College, Memphis, TN, “Team SHaG”, w/Amy Sillman and David Humphrey

2006      I-Space, The University of Illinois, Chicago, “Team SHaG”

2005      Lafayette College, Easton, PA, “Team SHaG”

1998      Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield, CT, “Team SHaG”

              Pamela Auchincloss Gallery, New York, “Team SHaG”

1997      Postmasters, New York, “Team SHAG”



2018      “La Cage Aux Fauves”, Double V Gallery, Marseille, FR

              “Oscillation”, Ferrara Showman Gallery, New Orleans, LA

              “The Nature Lab”, LABspace, Hillsdale, NY

2017       “Life’s Rich Pageant”, Jeff Bailey Gallery, Hudson, NY

               “Space as Narrative”, Concord Center for the Visual Arts, Concord, MA

2016       “Outside In”, Steven Harvey Fine Art Projects, New York

               “Representing Rainbows”, Gerald Peters Gallery, New York

               “Shimmering Substance: Selections from Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grantees of the Hudson Valley,"

                Kleinert/James Center for the Arts, Woodstock, NY

               “Faulted Valley Fog”, Transmitter Gallery, Brooklyn, NY



2017      BAU Institute, Cassis, France

2016      Yaddo Residency

2011-12 Rome Prize