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I have painted all my life, with the figure as a resource, with the landscape as a resource, and simply with a love of color and form. Twenty years ago a little wax crossed my path, and a new chapter opened as I began exploring the ancient art of encaustic.

There was very little information out there about encaustic technique, and I found my own way with it. I worked on panels, often landscape based images, and then in 2011 it changed again, when I began experimenting with pouring on paper and panels. When I pour wax onto paper, there is an excitement and urgency that I can’t get in any other way. I can move the molten wax by flexing the paper and achieve an astonishing sense of fluid transparency.

"The accident can open doors, create new impulses, change the direction of your work, but ultimately, the work must come from a place of intention, where the accidental has been enveloped into a greater reality of concept and intent." **

After all these years painting remains a mystery to is filtered through every painting I have ever made, every bit of knowledge of color and design that I have, and yet it emerges as something unique and surprising, every time.


** from the afterward by EK “Encaustic and Creative Process” in Encaustic Art in the 21c by Ashley Rooney

Aurelia Gallery

414 Canyon Road

Santa Fe, NM

Ellen Koment

I grew up amongst an extended family in Coney Island, and lived most of my childhood in New York. I was fortunate to go to two schools, the High School of Music and Art and then to The Cooper Union Art School in NYC, where MOMA and the Met were also my great teachers. 


When I moved to California to go to graduate school at UC Berkeley, with interest in the CA Figure Painters, I was fortunate to work with people like Elmer Bischoff and Joan Brown. But it was the CA landscape that opened new doors in my art. I still vividly remember my first trip up the coast of Northern California. The amazing landscape became part of my vision, and now here in New Mexico that is still the case. 


I spent twenty five years in Northern California, San Francisco and Sonoma County, before I moved to Santa Fe. I came here first as a resident at Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, fell in love with New Mexico and ten years later made it my home.

I have always painted. I have shown my work nationally, beginning with an Emerging Artists show at the San Francisco MOMA and now in galleries around the country. I have won grants and awards, been in books and magazines. Had wonderful supportive collectors. This year I was awarded the 2018 Gottlieb Foundation Artist Grant. I feel fortunate.


Gottlieb Foundation Artists Grant, 2018

Woven Tale Press, First Place winner, October 2017

Encaustic Art in the 21st Century, Ashley Rooney, paintings and article by EK, Feb 2016

Professional Artists’ magazine article, December 2016

Contemporary Art of the Southwest by Ashley Rooney 2014

EncausticWorks12, R&F Encaustics,ed by Joanne Mattera

Encaustic Art Institute Online Zine, May 2012

Contemporary Paper and Encaustic, Catherine Nash

Architectural Digest, Oct 2011, Painting in the Davis home, Santa Fe New Mexico Magazine

R&F Encaustics “Artist of the Month”, March 2010

ATOA Panel Moderator, NYC, Oct 2009, “Encaustic Today”

International Encaustic Conference, presenter, 2011

Montserrat Encaustic Conference Presenter: June 2010: “Working Large”


David Rothermel Contemporary, 2016, 2017

Karan Ruhlen Gallery, Santa Fe, 2013,

Box Gallery, Santa Fe, July, 2011

Box Gallery, Santa Fe, 2008

Waxlander Gallery, Santa Fe, 2005

Waxlander Gallery, Santa Fe, 2004

Helix Gallery, Santa Fe, NM, 2000

Ebert Gallery, San Francisco, 1997,

Ebert Gallery, San Francisco, 1995

Cynthia Woody Gallery, Scottsdale, Arizona, January 1997

Vita Gallery, Portland, Oregon 1994

Shapiro Jameson Gallery, San Francisco, California 1991

Phoenix College Art Gallery, Phoenix, Arizona1991

J. Nobleit Gallery, Sonoma, California 1990, 1988, 1987

Clatsop College Gallery, Astoria, Oregon 1987

Piper Sonoma, Healdsburg, California 1986

Solano College Gallery, Fairfeld, California 1984 

The Annex Gallery, Santa Rosa, California 1983



“Encaustic”, Longview Gallery Washington DC 2017

Two Painters, MIXX Projects, Telluride, CO 2017 ,2018

Karen Ruhlen Gallery, Santa Fe, 2013,

“Miniatures and More”, Albuquerque Museum 2012

“Waxed”, Island Museum of Art, San Juan Island, WA, 2012

Gallery Nord, San Antonio, TX 2012 (honorable mention)

Karan Ruhlen Gallery, Santa Fe, NM 2012

“Waxworks”, Portland, OR 2011

Zane Bennett Contemporary, Santa Fe,NM 2009

Originals 2007, Harwood Museum of Art, Taos, NM 2007

Waxlander Gallery 2001, 2002

Women Artists of New Mexico, National Museum of Women in the Arts, @ Lewallen Gallery,

Santa Fe, 1999,

Cup Show, Karan Ruhlen Gallery, Santa Fe, NM 1999,

Moxley/Ross Naranjo Santa Fe, NM 1998

Santa Fe International Academy of Art, 1997

Animals, Waxlander Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico 1996

Fenix Gallery, Taos, New Mexico 1995

Annual Exhibit, The Oregon Arts Council, Salem, Oregon 1993

Introductions, Solomon Dubnick Gallery, Sacramento, California 1992 Opening/Closing,

Artspace, Los Angeles, California 1991

Balance Brought Forward, Artspace, Los Angeles, California 1991

Arts 1990, California Museum of Art, Santa Rosa, California 1990

Arts 1989, California Museum of Art, Santa Rosa, California 1989

Painting Invitational, Bowery Gallery, New York City, New York 1988

Four Artists, Berkeley Art Center, Berkeley, California 1988

The San Francisco Arts Festival Juried Exhibit, San Francisco, California 1984 Juried

Exhibition, The Richmond Art Center, Richmond, California 1969

New Painters, The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, San Francisco, CA 1967


2018 Gottlieb Foundation Artist Grant

2013 International Encaustic Artists’ La Vendeeme Award for excellence in encaustic


Krause Residence, Trump Tower NYC 2008

Gottlieb Foundation Medical Emergency Grant ,1998

Creative Work Grant, University of New Mexico 2000

Helene Wurlitzer Foundation Residency Grant

Sonoma County Visual Artist's Grant (NEA)

Helene Wurlitzer Foundation Residency Grant, 1981

McDonald Mansion, Stained Glass Commission


Santa Fean NOW 2015,2016

Pasatiempo, Santa Fe New Mexican, August 2014

Pasatiempo, New Mexican, April 1996

Pasatiempo, New Mexican, February 1996

Painting for Katy "Bird" Magnunsen, Artweek, Jan 1993

Landscapes, Press Democrat, 1990

Four Artists, Oakland Tribune, 1985

New Painters at SFMOMA, San Francisco, CA 1966


M.A. Painting, UC Berkeley, 1983

BFA Cooper Union Art School, New York City,1965

High School of Music and Art, NYC, 1961

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