Erik ReeL in his studio with collector, sociologist, documentary filmmaker, and feminist scholar extraordinaire, France Winddance Twine, 2018. Photo: Rhonda P. Hill.

Erik ReeL

Born 1952, Seattle


Education


1980-82  University of Washington, graduate study in art history, criticism

1976        London, Paris, independent study, private grant

1975        BA summa cum laude, University of Washington, Seattle
1974        University of California, Berkeley
1971-73   Whitman College, Walla Walla, Washington 


Selected Solo and Two-Person Shows


Art in the Age of Screen Time, Sheehan GalleryWhitman College, Walla Walla, Washington 2025


Street, Laura Vincent Gallery, Portland, Oregon, 2024


What is so lovely about the end of the world? PLACE, Portland, Oregon 2023


Erik ReeL : Zero Point, GraySpace Gallery, Santa Barbara, California 2018


Epiphany, Erik ReeL with Diane Silver, Porch Gallery, Ojai, California 2017


Erik ReeL : Full Circle, Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka, California (catalog) 2016


Silence, SCIART, Camarillo, California 2014


Standing in Boots, Erik ReeL with Nash Rightmer, WAV Projects, Ventura 2014


Rebar at the Tool Room, Museum of Ventura County, Ventura, California 2014


Tabula Rasa, 643 Project Space, Ventura, California 2013


Markings, B Street Project Space, Oxnard, California 2011

 

Signs of a Lost Civilization, Vita Arts Center, Bell Arts Factory, Ventura, California 2011


Viva la Vida, Laurel Ventura Gallery, Ventura, California 2009


Turbulence, Erik ReeL with Vonder Gray, Galerie 251, Ventura, California 2009


Caruso Woods Gallery, Santa Barbara 2004, 2005, 2006, 2008


UCSB Faculty Club, Santa Barbara 2001, 2003, 2008


Santa Barbara Visitors Bureau and Film Commission, California 2003


Delphine Gallery, Santa Barbara 2000, 2001, 2002 (2), 2003


Thirty Drawings, Mazey Hickey Gallery, Seattle 1987


Figure: Narrative, Whatcom County Museum, Bellingham, Washington 1986


123 Jackson Street Gallery, Seattle 1983, 1984, 1985


Testament, Cornish Institute for Allied Arts, Seattle 1984


Face to Face, Seattle Pacific University, Seattle1984


I Dream the Shattering Price of Wisdom, Ace Studios, Seattle 1983


and/or alternative space, Seattle 1979, 1981


Facing Death, Evergreen State College, Olympia, Washington 1979


A Reading After Robbe Grillet, performance, Cabaret Apocalypse, Seattle 1977


Alexander Sasanoff Gallery, Seattle 1975, 1977



Selected Collective Shows


Butler Institute for American Art, Youngstown, Ohio 2018


From the Collection, Morris Graves Museum of Art, Eureka, California 2017


Objects of Impossibility: Contemporary Abstraction, Sullivan Goss Gallery, Santa Barbara 2017


Art For Living, Czong Institute for Contemporary Art, Seoul, South Korea 2017


For the Earth: Art for Global Ecology, Postmodern, Washington DC 2016


Out of the Great Wide Open, Museum of Contemporary Art, Santa Barbara 2015


Museum of Ventura County, Ventura, California 2009, 2014, 2015


Sullivan Goss Gallery, Santa Barbara 2013, 2014


Art For Peace, Vita Art Center,  Bell Arts Center, Ventura 2013


SCIART, Camarillo, California 2012, 2013


Print Electronico, computer-generated art, Buenos Aires, Argentina 2010


Epocha Nueva, Casa Del Mexicano, Santa Paula, California 2010


California State University Channel Islandscurated by Jack Reilly, California 2009


Caruso Woods Gallery, Santa Barbara 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008


I-5 Gallery, Los Angeles 2008


Erik ReeL and Friends at the Love House, Love House, Ventura, California 2008


Earth and Sky, Galerie 251, Ventura, California 2008


Rainbow Alliance Show, Rainbow Alliance LGBTQ Support Network, Ventura, California 2007


Picasso, Chagall, and Contemporary Master Prints, Modern Masters Gallery, Palm Desert, California 2006


Elizabeth Edwards Gallery, Palm Desert, California 2003, 2005, 2006


71st SAGA Annual Print Show, Society of American Graphic Artists [SAGA], New York 2004


17th Parkside National Print Exhibition, University of Wisconsin 2004


Works on Paper, curated by Matthew Pruit, Menil Sr Curator, McNeese State University, Louisiana 2004


Montpelier Center for the Arts, Montpelier, Virginia 2004


24th National Print Exhibition, ArtLink Contemporary, Fort Wayne, Indiana 2004


Las Vegas Center for Art and Design, Las Vegas, New Mexico 2004


Landscape Unlimited, abstract landscape, Chicago 2004


Penumbral/Palindrome, scrim, Signal+Noise, Media Arts & Technology, Center for Research in Electronic Art Technology (CREATE), UCSB 2003


Linda Moore Gallery, San Diego 2003


Lisa Kurts Gallery, Memphis, Tennessee 2002, 2003


Contemporary Art Forum Santa Barbara 2000, 2001, 2002


Artists For World Peace, Pavilion for World Peace, Kobe, Japan 2000


Artists For World Peace, Karpeles Museum, Santa Barbara 2000


Henry Art Gallery, University of Washington, Seattle 1986


New York, LA, Seattle, Center on Contemporary Art (COCA), Seattle, Los Angeles, New York 1985


123 Jackson Street Gallery, Seattle 1983, 1984, 1985


City of Seattle Collects, curated by Howard Fox, LACMA, Seattle Art Museum Pavilion 1984


East / West Dialogue, curated by Gene Barto, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle 1984


Testament, performance with dancers, Cornish Institute For The Arts, Seattle 1984


Burning Angels, performance with dancers, Virginia Street Studio, Seattle 1984


Krakatoa Kriterion, curated by Erik ReeL, 123 Jackson Street Gallery, Seattle 1984


Voices of Tomorrow, performance with Stuart Dempster, Kathleen Hunt, Polly Friedlander Gallery, Seattle 1983


Silver Birds, performance, sound collage with Sue Ann Harkey, Seattle Art Museum Pavilion, Seattle 1981


Night Mind, Dark Voices, performance with musician Sue Ann Harkey, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle 1981


Silver Birds, performance with dancers, Virginia Street studio 1980


Foster/White Gallery, Seattle1980


William Traver Gallery, Seattle 1979


Kodak International, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC 1979


Angels, performance with dancer, featured reader, Poetry Seattle, 1979


A Reading After Robbe-Grillet, performance with dancer, featured reader, Poetry Seattle 1978


Nacreous Passion, Performance, choreographed by Kathleen Hunt, Washington Hall, Seattle 1978


6500 x 20, art created on a Xerox 6500, and/or, Seattle 1978


Bellevue Art Museum, Seattle 1978


Flux Fest, curated by George Maciunas, and/or alternative space, Seattle 1977


Tenth National Drawing and Small Sculpture Show, curated by Wayne Thiebaud, Del Mar Museum, Corpus Christie, Texas 1976


Improvisational Ensemble, w/ Sam Rivers, Fred Hubbard, Whitman College, Walla Walla, Washington 1973



Collections


Represented in private collections based in Barcelona, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Chicago, Dubai, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Houston, Indianapolis, London, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Montreal, New York City, Oakland, Paris, San Francisco, San Diego, Santa Barbara,  Santa Fe [NM], Seattle, and Seoul. Public collections include the Morris Graves Museum of Art, Seattle City Light, City of Seattle, Czong Institute of Contemporary Art, Museum of Ventura County, Whitman College.


Teaching


Color Theory for Professionals, Pioneer Square Art Education Foundation, Seattle 1981-1984

University of Washington, Seattle, art history as graduate student TA 1980

Seattle Central College, color theory, painting, life drawing, art history, design 1978-1983

Fort Worden Gifted High School Program, Pt. Townsend, Washington 1978, 1979


Public Service


Governor's Award for Public Service, Washington State, 1985

Seattle Arts Commission Special Task Force on Media 1977

Seattle Arts Commission Special Task Force on Educational Institutions 1977


Selected Writing


Pterodactyl Cries: Art, Abstraction, and Apocalypse, 2021

Society805.com online magazine, arts editor, art and drama writer 2011-2018

At The Corral, script, performed by The School Children's Theatre, Boulder, Colorado 1988

Schnegeruschka, script, performed by The School Children's Theatre, Boulder, Colorado 1988

Akbar's Market, script, performed by The School Children's Theatre, Boulder, Colorado 1987

Columnist on art, Bellevue Journal-American, daily newspaper, Seattle 1979-1983

Arts Editor, Seattle Voice Magazine 1979-1980

International Correspondent for art magazines including Vanguard, ArtExpress 1978-1982

West Coast correspondent, High Performance 1978-1981

Northwest Correspondent, ArtWeek 1978-1981


Selected Artists Talks


Neither Supernatural Nor Mechanical, Artists Talk/interview, Whitman College, 2021.

Full Circle: NW School, with Jae Carlsson, Morris Graves Museum of Art, panel performance, 2016

From Fluxus to Rebar, Artists Talk, Museum of Ventura County, Ventura, California, 2014.

Lecture in conjunction with solo exhibition at Whatcom County Museum, Bellingham, Washington, 1986

Panel on contemporary painting, Whatcom County Museum, Bellingham, Washington, 1986.

Symposium on Visual Art and Media: Politics and Critique. Seattle Media Library, 1985.

Critics Symposium on Painting, Western Washington University, Bellingham, Washington, 1985.

Titian to Clemente: Transformations in the Painterly Tradition in Italy, Cornish Institute of the Arts, 1984.

The Rebirth of Painting. Public lecture, Seattle Art Museum, 1984.

Dialectics of Transavantguardism: Wolfgang Max Faust vs. Germano Celant, Seattle Public Library, 1984.

The Berlin Wall, Urban Graffiti, and the New Painting, Seattle Pacific University, 1984.

Sources in My Work, public lecture, Cornish Institute for the Arts, Seattle, 1984.

Painting Today, Public lecture, Cornish Institute for the Arts, Seattle, 1984.

Painterly Painting, Again, Public lecture, Seattle Art Museum, 1984.

Late Painting: Picasso, Matisse, de Chirico, Chagall, et alia, Public lecture, Seattle Art Museum, 1983.

Late de Chirico and the Next Generation: Clemente, Palladino, Cucci, Public lecture, Seattle Central College, 1983.

Teaching Color Theory: Preparing for a Digital World,  Lecture series, Seattle Public Library, 1983.

Teaching Color Theory: Preparing for a Digital World, Lectures, Seattle Central  College, 1983.

Color Theory: The Bauhaus Tradition Today: Itten, Klee, Albers, Dahn, ReeL, lecture, Seattle Central  College, 1982.

Color Theory: Gerrittsen Schema, Visual Constancies, Color Effect, and Painting, Seattle Central College, 1981.

An Objective Criterion for Temperature Contrast: Itten was Wrong, Seattle Central College Auditorium, 1981.

Fluxus Flumoxed, Lecture commemorating George Maciunas, Fluxus founder, Seattle Masonic Hall, 1980.

Color Theory: Preparing Visual Artists for the Computer Age. Seattle Public Library, 1980.

Color Theory Today: Why Classical Mixing Theories Do Not Work, Seattle Public Library, 1980.

Color Theory: Gerrittsen Schema, Transmission Curves, and Digital Representations, Seattle Central College, 1980.

Color Theory: A Comprehensive Conceptual Scheme for Artists and Designers, Seattle Public Library, 1980.

Visual Constancies in the Teaching of Color Theory to Artists and Designers, Seattle Central College, 1980.

Edwin Land and Impacts on Color Theory: What Artists Need to Know, Seattle Central  College, 1980.

Cafe Apocalypse: Performance Art Today, Evergreen State College, 1979.

Performance Art Today: Sources and Contexts, Public lecture, Washington Hall, Seattle, 1979.


ReeL's technique exhibits a high degree of transparency, layering, sfgraffito and graffitto, with a strong sense of hand, the hand-made, and an absence of any references to the material world. This work can be seen as a thorough-going critique of materialism, the machine or machine-made, and the triumph of feeling over the manufactured. For ReeL, marking is a defining characteristic of the human and the primordial act of signification and meaning for human consciousness.  

Nikki Arconi, 2011


See also Bibliography and Bio.