Hanging precariously and horizontally from red sandstone, hundreds of feet above the ground, may not seem like it would inspire the creation of beautiful oil paintings, but that is exactly what happened with Erin Hanson. After a lifetime of experimenting in different styles and mediums, it wasn't until Hanson began rock climbing at Red Rock Canyon that her painting style was consolidated by a single inspiration and force of nature.
Erin Hanson began painting as a young girl, voraciously learning oils, acrylics, watercolor, pen and ink, pastels, and life drawing from accomplished art instructors. She began commissioning paintings at age ten, and by age twelve, she was employed after school by a mural studio, learning the techniques of acrylics on the grand scale of forty-foot canvases. Two years later, a high school scholarship took her to Otis College of Art, where she immersed herself in figure drawing. Graduating high school at age sixteen and once again demonstrating that she was a child prodigy, Hanson next attended UC Berkeley, excelling further in her studies and creative development and attaining a degree in Bioengineering.
After graduating from college, Hanson entered the art trade as a professional, inspired by landscapes and vantage points only beheld by the most adventurous. Rock climbing among the brilliantly colored cliffs of Nevada and Utah, watching the seasons and the light change daily across the desert, provided endless inspiration for her work. In these beautiful surroundings, Hanson decided firmly to dedicate herself to creating one painting every week for the rest of her life. She has stuck to that decision ever since and has for the past decade been developing a unique, minimalist technique of placing impasto paint strokes without layering, which has become known as "Open-Impressionism." As other artists began emulating her painting techniques, Hanson was credited as the pioneer and originator of this contemporary style.
Through the years, Hanson has continued to use the outdoors to inspire a huge collection of work. She visits the Colorado plateau every year, backpacking and hiking through areas such as Zion National Park, Canyon de Chelly, and Monument Valley. Other favorite haunts include Paso Robles, Joshua Tree National Park, and the Anza-Borrego desert. Erin Hanson transforms these landscapes into abstract mosaics of color and texture, her impasto application of paint lending a sculptural effect to her art. Her oil paintings stand out in a crowd, bringing a fresh new look to Western landscapes.
- ERIN HANSON'S PAINTED PARKS. Solo exhibition St. George Art Museum. 2016.
- A FEELING OF HUMANITY: WESTERN ART FROM THE KEN RATNER COLLECTION. Mattatuck Museum, 2014.
- Rockwell Museum of Western Art, 2015.
- Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art, 2015.
- Museum of the Big Bend, 2016.
- LA SALLE UNIVERSITY ART MUSEUM, Philadelphia, PA. Permanent collection, 2014.
- MATTATUCK MUSEUM, Waterbury, CT. Permanent collection, 2014.
- BONE CREEK MUSEUM OF AGRARIAN ART, David City, NE. Permanent collection, 2014.
- ST GEORGE ART MUSEUM, St. George, UT. Permanent collection, 2013.
Exhibitions & Awards
- ALONG THE DISTANT MESA: AN HOMAGE TO MAYNARD DIXON, Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, Tucson, AZ 2019
- THE RED ROCK SHOW, The Erin Hanson Gallery, CA 2018
- "25th Anniversary Celebration" Mark Sublette Medicine Man Gallery, Tucson, AZ 2017
- COWGIRL UP! Desert Caballeros Western Museum, Wickenburg, AZ. 2016
- THE ERIN HANSON ART & WINE TOUR. Paso Robles, CA. 2015
- ART IN EMBASSIES. U.S. Department of State. 2015
- SAATCHI ART. The Year in Review: Best of 2015.
- WOODLANDS WATERWAY ART FESTIVAL. Best in Show for 2015. Houston, TX.
- INDIAN WELLS ART FESTIVAL. Poster Artist for 2015. Indian Wells, CA.
- HERMOSA BEACH ARTWALK. Poster Artist for 2015. Hermosa Beach, CA.
- THE MOUNTAIN OYSTER CLUB ART SHOW. Tuscon, AZ. 2014
- WORLD WIDE ART LOS ANGELES, Artavita Contest 1st Place Winner. Los Angeles, CA. Curated by Despina Tunberg. 2014.
- PASO ROBLES: WORKS OF ERIN HANSON. Studios on the Park, Paso Robles, CA. Curated by Anne Laddon. 2014
- ERIN HANSON: BORREGO IN COLOR. Tumbleweed Art Gallery, Borrego Springs, CA. Curated by Glenda Garmon. 2014
- PASOSCAPES: OILS BY ERIN HANSON. Studios on the Park, Paso Robles, CA. Curated by Sasha Irving. 2013.
- EARTH, SKY, WATER. Arts at Denver, Denver. Curated by Paula Colette. 2013
- LA JOLLA FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS. 1st Place Painting. 2013
- BORREGO ART INSTITUTE. Borrego Springs, CA. Curated by Barbara Nickerson. 2013
- ART IN THE PARK. Boulder City, NV. 1st Place Painting. Juried by Boulder City Hospital Foundation. 2012
- ERIN HANSON: COLORS OF PASO, SOLO SHOW. Paso Robles, CA. Curated by Sasha Irving. 2012
- BOULDER CITY FINE ART FESTIVAL. 1st Place Fine Art. Juried by Boulder City Art Guild. 2012
- NATIONAL OIL & ACRYLIC PAINTERS' SOCIETY: Best of America 2012
- CA 101 EXHIBITION, 2012, Redondo Beach, CA. Curated by Sandra Liljenwall. 2012
- ICONS OF THE WEST 2012. Missoula, MT. Curated by Dana Gallery. 2012
- DESERTSCAPES: COACHELLA VALLEY AND BEYOND. Palm Desert, CA. Curated by Jana Koroczynsky. 2012
- THE MAJESTICAL ROOF. Downtown Pasadena, CA. Curated by Christina Burnal. 2009
- LIGUORI GALLERY SOLO SHOW. Boulder City, NV. Curated by Steven Liguori. 2007
- VALLEY OF FIRE VISITOR'S CENTER. Valley of Fire State Park, Nevada. 2006
Listings & Memberships
- AskArt, The Artist's Bluebook
- Marquis Who's Who's
- California Art Club
- American Impressionist Society
- Oil Painters of America
Lectures and Demonstrations
- Open Impressionism Live Demonstration. Studios on the Park, Paso Robles, CA. 2014, 2015.
- Burbank Art Association Demonstration and Lecture, by Erin Hanson. The Erin Hanson Gallery, Glendale, CA. 2013.
- PasoScapes Demonstration of Open Impressionism, by Erin Hanson. Studios on the Park, Paso Robles, CA. 2013.
- Art Marketing Workshop with Erin Hanson. Studios on the Park, Paso Robles, CA. 2013.
- Open Impressionism Workshop with Erin Hanson. Paso Robles, CA. 2012
- PGA West Clubhouse, La Quinta, CA. 9-ft oil diptych painting of local landscape, plus many prints. 2015
- Torrance Memorial Medical Center, Torrace, CA. Large 9-ft oil painting of local landscape. 2014
- UCLA Medical Center, Tustin, CA. Gallery-wrapped canvas prints. 2014
- Kaiser-Permanante Hospital, Irvine, CA. Two oil paintings of local landscape. 2013
- Kaiser-Permanante Hospital, Carson City, CA. Two oil painting commissions, 6ft and 5ft. 2013
- Kaiser-Permanante Hospital, Anaheim, CA. 19-Ft oil painting of local landscape. 2012
- Nordstrom Stores. Multiple purchases of oil paintings. 2009
- Otis College of Art and Design. Special scholarship program. 1996
- Delphi Academy, La Canada, CA. High School Diploma. 1998
- University of California, Berkeley. Dean's List. Bachelor of Science. 2003
- Western Art and Architecture, April-May 2020
- 2020 Art of the West, Guidebook
- Southwest Art magazine, July 2019, feature article
- "Maynard DIxon's American West: Along the Distant Mesa" by Mark Sublette, 2018
- Western Art Collector, May 2018
- Open-Impressionism: Landscapes in Oil, Volume II, by Erin Hanson. 2016
- California Wine Country: Impressions in Oil, by Anja Wulf. Hardcover, 200 pages. 2015
- Erin Hanson Design, Flipbook for Creative Decorating, by Erin Hanson. Paperback, 52 pages. 2015
- Open-Impressionism: The Landscapes of Erin Hanson, by David Lear. Hardcover, 298 pages. 2014
- Yearly wall calendar, 2013 - 2016.