Erin Curtis



Austin-based Erin Curtis plays in patterns. As she says of her cut-canvas works, "The paintings are intensely handmade and united in their dense weavings of color that work to suffocate a space that is continually built up, broken down, stopped and reversed." These pieces almost defy perception and classification; her paintings use the material indicative of the medium, but are layered almost as collage. These compositions mimic the order of traditional tapestries, thick with texture and form, though Curtis is more playful and chaotic than any textile can offer. These paintings are a demonstration of work, incredibly intensive in the labor they require. Though they might seem maximal upon a quick glance, they are a struggle to bargain with harmony, to find colors and pattern that will please the eye.

Erin Curtis is an artist living and working in Austin, Texas. Her recent work is interested in geometric abstraction and its intersection with representations of nature, ornamentation and their historical roots in weaving, architecture and ritual. Curtis’s work explores utopic ideals of beauty and structure, meeting with process and the chaos of chance. Primarily working as a painter, she also creates, large-scale site-specific installations and public art projects. She has received grants from the Dallas Museum of Art, the Andy Warhol Foundation, the City of Austin and the District of Columbia. Recently, Curtis had solo shows at the Galveston Arts Center (2019), CalPoly San Luis Obispo University, California (2016), Big Medium Gallery in Austin, Texas (2015) and at Flashpoint Gallery (2015) in Washington, DC. She has created commissioned works for the Chicago Transit Authority, Moody Center for the Arts, Rice University, City of Washington DC, Art in Embassies and The City of Austin. Curtis has attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in 2010 and been awarded fully funded residencies at Anderson Ranch (2012) and Vermont Studio Center (2014). In 2008-2009, Curtis was a Fulbright Scholar in Jaipur, Rajasthan. Curtis graduated from Williams College with a BA in Liberal Arts in 1999 and received her MFA from the University of Texas at Austin in 2007.

Conduit Gallery Exhibitions
  • 2021 Feeling Like an Abstraction, Conduit Gallery
  • 2021 Trapdoor, MASS Gallery, Austin, TX
  • 2019 Night and Day, Galveston Art Center, Galveston, TX
  • 2017 Expedition Batikback, Co-Lab Projects, Austin, TX
  • 2017 Jungle Transmission, Conduit Gallery, Dallas TX
  • 2016 100% Acrylic, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA
  • 2016 Sondheim Semi-Finalists Exhibition at Artscape, Baltimore, MD
  • 2015 A Narrow Escape from History, Big Medium, Austin, TX
  • 2015 Diamond Blind, Flashpoint Gallery, Washington, DC
  • 2015 Viscerally Yours, School 33 Art Center, Baltimore, MD
  • 2015 Sondheim Semi-Finalists Exhibition at Artscape, Baltimore, MD
  • 2015 Splitting Light, University of Buffalo, Buffalo, NY
  • 2015 Art in Embassies, US Department of State Exhibition, New Delhi, India
  • 2015 Good Senses, 101 Exhibit, Los Angeles, CA
  • 2013 Furthest West, The Contemporary, Austin, TX
  • 2012 Prosperity Garden, David Shelton Gallery, San Antonio, TX
  • 2012 Album of the Conqueror, Conduit Gallery, Dallas, TX
  • 2012 Resident Exhibition, Patton-Malott Gallery, Snowmass, CO


2020 Moody Center for the Arts, Rice University, Houston, TX

2018 Kedzie Jewel, Chicago Transit Authority, Chicago, IL

  • 2017 Recreational Geometry, Facebook, Austin, TX

  • 2016 Beaded Curtain, exterior mural, The Torpedo Factory, Alexandria, VA

  • 2016 Vertical Landscape, Permanent collection of the US Embassy, Kabul, Afghanistan, Art in Embassies, US Department of State

  • 2016 Top Knot Mural, interior mural, Top Knot, Dallas, TX2015

  • 2015 French Trip, DCCAH Designed to Recycle printed truck wrap design, Washington, DC

  • 2015 Diamond Landscape, The Lobby Project in NoMA, Washington, DC

  • 2015 Nature and Opulence, 4 traffic control box designs, commissioned by the City of Alexandria, VA2013

  • 2013 Pedestrian Geometries, City of Austin $158,000 Public Art Commission to create a permanent series of 25 sculptures for downtown 3rd Street, TX