Erin Harmon






Not For Sale


  • Fountain

    Erin Harmon

  • Untitled

    Erin Harmon

  • Threshold

    Erin Harmon

  • Oculus

    Erin Harmon

  • Pond

    Erin Harmon

  • Summer Grid I

    Erin Harmon


About the Artist

Erin Harmon earned a BA in Studio Art from San Diego State University and an MFA in Painting from Rhode Island School of Design. She has exhibited extensively in both group and solo exhibitions at venues including Field Projects, NY; Sarah Doyle Gallery, Providence RI; Atlanta Artists Center & Gallery, Atlanta GA; the Brooks Museum of Art, Memphis, TN; Hilbert Raum Gallery, Berlin, Germany; the Attleboro Arts Museum, Attleboro, MA; and LAUNCH Gallery, Los Angeles, CA. Currently she holds the James F. Ruffin Chair of Art at Rhodes College where she has taught for 20 years. She is a founding member of Tiger Strikes Asteroid Los Angeles, the western-most outpost of the national not-for-profit artist-run gallery.

Artist Statement

My work dwells in the twilight zone between painting and sculpture. Filled with longing for places that do not actually exist, contradictions flourish with invocations of both the animated and the arrested, the joyful and the staid, the high and the low. Material and processes become sites for fantasy, illusion, and the interplay between flat and not-flat. My most recent work tinkers with scale to produce environments that the viewer can project themselves into as landscapes, even while confronting their qualities of un-nature. Borne from my previous body of painted paper collages, the new installation based works are influenced by techniques common to theatrical painters with materials often used in set design such as latex theatrical paint and muslin. A lineage of shapes and images become a trail of breadcrumbs from one idea to another; previous works including drawings and collages, sometimes many years old are scoured, drawn, painted, cut, and recycled over time, one idea begetting another, endlessly self-generating, encapsulating a romance with materials and processes. 

Related to theatrical spaces, the works in my most recent exhibition Aggregate Optics of Make-A-Do function as sites for an event or performance. Yet, while conspicuously absent of humans, their uncanny existence exerts control over the viewer as actor, prescribing the way they move through space. Both the eye and the body at large are taken over in perceptual ways. Even the act of making the painted canvas works, due to their scale, become performative. They must be stood on while being made, which posits me literally in the painting as the figure in my own landscape. Oscillating between celebratory yet also oppressive, the works create a tension between the joyful liberation of conjuring a new, not-nature and the estranged sense of an unreality that has been manufactured. I am endlessly interested in the idea of a place as a thing and a thing as a place.