Robert Kelly (born 1956) is an American artist. He is based in New York City.Kelly was born in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and studied at Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts (B.A. 1978).His paintings have been acquired by public and private collections in Europe and the United States, including The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; The Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, NY; The Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM; Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, WI; Smith College Art Museum, Northampton MA; Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum, Rutger’s University, NJ; Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts, Montgomery; The Fogg Museum, Cambridge, MA; The Margulies Collection, Miami, FL; and the McNay Art Museum, San Antonio, TX.Kelly has traveled throughout the United States, Europe, North Africa, the Near East, and Nepal. His work often incorporates unusual materials from his journeys, among them vintage posters and printed antique paper, obscured and layered in saturated pigments on a canvas faintly scored with irregular grids. Kelly’s paintings have been likened to palimpsests and his method described as one of building “meticulously on inhabited ground, layering materials, documents, and signs, covering them, wiping out their beauty, nearly, but allowing something of the labor and their languages to persist.”Like his artworks, Kelly's New York studio, which was featured in New York Cottages & Gardens, expresses an informed eclecticism. “Furnishings include a range of mid-20th-century and contemporary pieces, including chairs by Poul Kjaerholm, Eileen Gray, Marcel Breuer, and Piero Lissoni. They contrast beautifully with rough-hewn wooden antiques, including an old drafting table...and a New Mexican cottonwood workbench from the early 1800s. Rugs are tribal, from Africa and the American Southwest. Not surprisingly, there is a lot of artwork on view and even more books—shelves upon shelves and multiple stacks of them. The orderliness of the space perfectly correlates with the linearity of Kelly’s canvases.”Kelly worked as a commercial photographer for Polaroid in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and completed residencies at The MacDowell Colony and The Károlyi Foundation, Vence, France, before devoting himself entirely to painting in 1982. His work has been the subject of more than forty-five solo shows at venues in North America and Europe, including Spazio Bianco/AR Contemporary Art, Milan, Italy; Leslie Feely Fine Art, New York; and The John Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco, California. He has participated in more than one hundred group shows in the United States and abroad.Kelly is represented by Leslie Feely Fine Art, New York; The John Berggruen Gallery, San Francisco; James Kelly Contemporary, Santa Fe, New Mexico; AR/Contemporary Art, Milan, Italy; and Galleri Weinberger, Copenhagen, Denmark.

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