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Elissa Levy
Brooklyn, NY
Neighborhood: Gowanus

ARTIST STATEMENT: Taking imagery from newspapers and magazines, I deconstruct the ubiquitous male icons -- soldiers, athletes, celebrities and politicians -- that populate the printed media. When their forms are isolated, they become stripped of identifiable cues of power or fame, and reduced to ghost-like apparitions. Yet still, they retain their posture of authority. Here, soldiers and politicians evoke the two-pronged waging of war from the metaphorical halls of power and the trenches, each isolated from the realities of the other. Athletes and celebrities invoke social hierarchies in which entertainers are cultural idols, and sports matches provide endless dramatizations of heroized men gearing up and going into battle. The newspaper is a found object that I can edit and transform with cuts, tears and color, changing contemporary artifacts into raw and makeshift future relics. The re-imagined and reworked figures are animated in pen and paint with concentric lines of fluorescent colors, to look like renderings of auras or infrared photography, as if providing a glimpse into their core. I approach this work with a punk DIY ethos; using craft and everyday materials, I alter not only the shape, but the context. While aggressively eradicating these figures in their current mass-reproduced form, I am changing them into otherworldly silhouettes that distract from their socially constructed masculinity and allow us to see the whole of them.

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Elissa Levy lives and works in NY


1993 Rhode Island School of Design Providence
Bachelor of Fine Arts
1989-92 Brown University, Providence
Liberal Arts
1988, 1992 The American University in Paris
Liberal Arts, Division of Art History
1989 Instituto D'Allende San Miguel D'Allende, Mexico
Studio Art
1988 Parsons School of Art Paris
Studio Art


2008 Phantom, Stonefox Artspace, New York, NY
2004 Camoufleur, Brooklyn Fireproof Inc., Brooklyn, NY
1998 Symmetry, The Living Room, San Francisco, CA


2015 Coordinated Disregard, Terrault Contemporary, Baltimore, MD
In Our Cave We See Shadows, Projekt722, Brooklyn, NY
2014 All the News That’s Fit to Print, Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NM
Out to See, Various location in the South Street Seaport, NY, Curated by Sara
2013 The Written Word, John A. Day Gallery, University of South Dakota, Vermillion, SD
Burying the Lede, Momenta Art, Brooklyn, NY
Paper, Mirror, Torn. Brian Morris Gallery, NY, NY
2012 Creative Nonfiction, Kunstalle Galapagos, Brooklyn, NY
Quantum Effect, The Active Space, Brooklyn, NY
Wise Blood, Field Projects, NY
Cut-Up, Storefront Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
2011 Splitting Infinity, Studio Salon Series featuring Andrea Champlin, Elissa Levy
Joel Morrison, and Mary Murphy, curated by David Gibson
2010 What is Left, Curatorial Research Lab@Winkleman Gallery, NY, curated by Rachel
Painting with Pictures, Casita Maria Center for Arts and Education, Bronx, NY
curated by David Gibson, Savannah Spirit and Asya Geisberg
2009 NEVERandagain, International Studio and Curatorial Program, Brooklyn (ISCP), NY
curated by Elissa Levy
All Suffering to End Soon!, Callicoon Fine Arts, Callicoon, NY
Kayosties with Elissa Levy and Bjorn Meyer-Ebrecht, Pocket Utopia,Brooklyn, NY
2008 Enantiomorphic Chamber, NURTUREart Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, Curated by Kevin
Regan and Christopher Howard
2007 One Day We Shall Control the Sun, The Arsenal Gallery, New York, NY
Playing With Fire, Texas Firehouse, LIC, NY
Pre-Primed, WPAC Auction, The Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC
2006 Purfle; Cal Lane & Elissa Levy, Foley Gallery, New York, NY
Gimme Shelter, Shelter Island, NY, Curated by Megan Riley
Altoids Living Spaces 2006, Exhibition of New American Design,
Curated by Dave Alhadef & Jason Miller, Brooklyn, NY
Other than Art, G Fine Art, Curator’s Office, Provisions Library, Washington, DC,
curated by Milena Kalinovska
2005 Altoids 7th Annual Curiously Strong Collection,
Consolidated Works, Seattle, WA
Blue Star Arts Complex, San Antonio, TX
Soo Visual, Minneapolis, MN
New Museum Of Contemporary Art, New York, NY
Luckman Center Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
2004 Gifted, The Future Perfect, Brooklyn, NY
Shape-Shifter, Emerging artists at audioEngine, New York, NY curated by Elissa Levy
Extreme Diversity, Great Neck Arts Center, Great Neck, NY
White Columns Benefit Auction, White Columns New York, NY
2003 Wish for Color, Presented by Gen Art and Banana Republic, Tribute, NY, New York and
online at
Breaking Ground, White Columns New York, NY curated by Lauren Ross
2002 Bodies and Forms, Art Under the Bridge Festival, Brooklyn, NY
2001 KIDSART Interactive Coloring Book for Children, published by Clifford•Smith
Gallery; Boston, MA, curated by Bradley Rubenstein
1998 Chateaux Marmont International Art Fair, Santa Monica Museum of Art West
Hollywood, CA


The Glenfiddich Artists in Residence Programme 2006, Dufftown, Scotland


The Altoids® 7th Annual Curiously Strong Collection, part of the New Museum of Contemporary Art, NY, permanent collection


2010 Visionaire 2010, A Survey of Art in the Year 2010, calendar curated by 52 influential figures, featured artist
Sewing Social, a monthly series of events where people are invited to wear clothing that needs repair and a special team of darners mends the clothing on one’s person; held at Robert Goff Gallery, NY and Morgan Lehman Gallery, NY

2009 NEVERandagain, ISCP, Brooklyn, NY curated by Elissa Levy featuring Alisa Baremboym, Balam Bartolomé, Rhys Coren, Rico Gatson, Rena Leinberger, Elissa Levy, Sam Martineau, Björn Meyer-Ebrecht, Austin Thomas and Ian Umlauf

2008 CAKE Magazine: Outhwith, cover image, curated by Hilary Nicoll and Claudia Zeiske

2007 Alex Da Corte, I Attach Myself to You, Stonefox Artspace, New Yor,k, NY solo exhibition curated by Elissa Levy

2005 Tour T-Shirt, The Altoids® 7th Annual Curiously Strong Collection,
Featured artist for annual t-shirt that accompanies the exhibition tour
Souvenir, Exhibition of emerging artists at audioEngine, New York, NY curated by Elissa Levy

2004 Soldiers Symmetry Wallpaper, Wallpaper of own design installed in and sold
exclusively at The Future Perfect, Brooklyn, NY
Shape-Shifter, Exhibition of emerging artists at audioEngine, New York, NY curated by
Elissa Levy
neverland, Exhibition of emerging artists at audioEngine, New York, NY curated by
Elissa Levy
Gifted, The Future Perfect, Brooklyn, NY, curated by Elissa Levy


2009 Guest Critic, Fine Arts Department, Video and Sculpture Studio, School of
Visual Art, NY
2001-2002 Continuing Education Faculty, Parsons School of Design, New
York, NY Design and Drawing Courses


Short, Aaron. Pocket Utopia Stumbles through Williamsburg, New York Post, November 17, 2009.
Reviews, Art Review, April 2009, p.96
Neyenesch, Cassandra. Enantiomorphic Chamber The Brooklyn Rail, March 2008, online (picture).
Lawrence, Sidney. Capital Roundup, Artnet,com, May 2006.
Cohen, David. Artworld Digest Magazine Unambiguous, 2006, p.11 (picture).
Dawson, Jessica. Art That Seeks Its Higher Purpose, The Washington Post, April 1, 2006, p. C01.
Abbe, Mary. Curiously Fun,Minneapolis Star Tribune, June 17, 2005.
Goddard, Dan R. Altoids Gives Art Show Breath of Fresh Air, San Antonio Express-News, March 13, 2005.
Isono, Nobue. 2005 New York Ateliers, 2005, p 14-19. (book)
Farr, Sheila. Altoids: A Refreshing Mixture of Work by Talked-About Young Artists, The Seattle Times, January 23, 2005.
Chen, Aric. Generation Next, Surface, November 2004, Issue #50, p. 64-6.
Kahn, Eve M. Power to the Paper, I.D., November 2004, p.86-9.
Wolff, ZoÃ. Renaissance Fair, TimeOut New York, June 3-10, 2004, Issue No. 453, p.46.
Ross, Lauren. Warcraft,NY Arts Magazine, Vol. 9 No. 5/6, 2004.
Harris, Jane. Breaking Ground, TimeOut New York, October 16-23, 2003, Issue No. 420, p.83.
Gibson, David. Featured Artists Portfolio,, Fall 1999 edition.
Berry, Colin. Top Picks Review, Citysearch San Francisco,, October 1998.


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