BIOGRAPHY
SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Ink on paper
1986
Chrysanthemums
Ink on paper
24 x 18 inches

I graduate from Cooper Union, then migrate to Houston for a post-graduate program at The Glassel School of Art.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and ink on paper
1989
Albrecht Durer and the Rain of Blood
Watercolor and ink on paper
48 x 42 inches

Back in New York, I begin thinking about my influences, and trying to sort out how to best work through them. Albrecht Durer, with whom I have had a lifelong fascination with, used to have terrible nightmares, and wrote letters describing them, including one about a rain of blood. I had the best of both worlds with a series of paintings based upon those letters, making what appeared to be abstractions out of actual documents.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
1990 - 1991
Letter to My Wife
Watercolor and gouache on paper
18 x 51 inches

Gail and I got married in 1990, I made this for her as a wedding present. They are paintings of water and light that we saw together while living in Montauk, New York, the eastern-most point on Long Island.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor, gouache and graphite on paper
1994
Quahog
Watercolor, gouache and graphite on paper
10 x 14 inches

We moved to Bellport, Long Island in 1994, and i was trying to make paintings like Letter to My Wife, but noticed that the things I was finding on the beach were a lot more interesting. One day, I just decided to paint a clam shell, and it worked for me, so I painted a lot more of them.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor, gouache and graphite on paper
1996
Quahog
Watercolor, gouache and graphite on paper
14 x 10 inches

I never got tired of painting quahogs.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
1998
Rocks, Montauk
Watercolor and gouache on paper
22 x 22 inches

Over the winter of 1998, I made a series of rock paintings from my walks on the beaches of Montauk. They were shown at Lizan Tops Gallery in East Hampton, and you had to go down a flight of stairs to see the exhibition. At the opening, I heard very loud, sharp footsteps and looked up to see a pair of Manolo Blahniks coming down the stairs. The tannest woman I had ever seen poked her head down, waved her hand dismissively, and said to whoever was behind her: "Just a bunch of photographs of rocks", and then went back upstairs. It was one of the greatest compliments that I have ever received.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
2000
Crab and Rock
Watercolor and gouache on paper
14 x 10 inches

In 2001, I showed a large group of 14 x 10 inch watercolors that showed arrangements of the bits and pieces I found on the beach. The series went on for years, finishing up around 2011 with a show called No Maps for These Territories at Pamela Williams Gallery in Amagansett, New York.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and graphite on paper
2003
The Three Wise Men
Watercolor and graphite on paper
18 x 24 inches

In 2003, The National Science Foundation Antarctic Artists and Writers Program send me to Palmer Station, Anvers Island, Antarctica as artist-in-residence.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor, gouache on selective glazing on paper
2004
Rocks, Antarctica
Watercolor, gouache on selective glazing on paper
34 x 48 inches

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2004
Cloud and Sky, Montauk
Watercolor on paper
22 x 30 inches

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2006
Oologoy
Watercolor on paper
60 x 60 inches

In 2006, I showed a series of birds and eggs with Pamela Williams Gallery

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2007
The Scarlet Ibis (for Hamza Mohammed)
Watercolor on paper
48 x 34 inches

Pamela Williams showed a series of paintings in an exhibition called Pink in 2007. I remember reading The Scarlet Ibis, by James Hurst when I was a kid, and it reminded me of a boy we knew, Hamza, who had died the year before. This is one of those paintings I wish hadn't been sold, but at a certain point in your career, you can't not sell a painting when someone wants one.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2007
Flamingo
Watercolor on paper
60 x 78 inches

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2008
Reunion Solitaire
Watercolor on paper
34 x 48 inches

A close relative of the Dodo, I painted this as part of an extinct series over the course of 2006 - 2008

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2008
Nest (detail)
Watercolor on paper
55 x 78 inches

A seagull nest I found in Montauk in 2001, and carried around in a cigar box until painting it over the winter of 2007-2008

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
2009
Great Blue Heron on the Shores of Monhegan
Watercolor and gouache on paper
40 x 30 inches

In 2010, I begin exhibiting with Dowling Walsh Gallery in Rockland, Maine. I make a series of paintings of birds with backgrounds of Monhegan Island, most of which are culled from early-20th century postcards.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor on paper
2010
Portuguese Man of War
Watercolor on paper
48 x 34 inches

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Ink on paper
2011
Pulpit Rock, Monhegan
Ink on paper
18 x 24 inches

From 2009 to 2011, I did a whole series of drawings of Monhegan, mostly of the headlands and rock formations on the back shore of the island.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
2014
Great Blue Heron
Watercolor and gouache on paper
18 x 24 inches

All these years later, I am still painting Blue Herons. Every time I think they are done, I see them do something else I never saw them do before, and I paint more. Just this morning, we were down on the beach, and Abbott, our four year old son, started jumping up and down out of excitement because there were more than a dozen herons down there, looking for their breakfast. Abbott, like me, it would seem, just can't get enough Blue Herons.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
2015
Children of Lost Whalers - Ruth
Watercolor and gouache on paper
30 x 22 inches

What started out as a small group of paintings of whales led to several years of research on the history of American Whaling. One thing that struck me was how many ships had disappeared in the hunt for whales, and how many crewmen were lost at sea - men with wives, children and families. I invented the fabric of Ruth's dress, which shows scenes of whale hunting, but it was not without precedent: homes in the 1800's were decorated with whaling scenes on wallpaper, draperies, an whales were featured on salt shakers, china, even furniture.

SCOTT KELLEY  BIOGRAPHY  Watercolor and gouache on paper
Bear
2016
Watercolor and gouache on paper
55 x 48 inches

Going through my picture files one night, a photo of a bear ends up next to a photo of a Wabanaki man wearing a top hat, and next to him is a photo of a Mi'Kmaq chiefs coat. Twenty minutes later, I have put it all together and drawn it out on a big sheet of paper. This was how the Birch paintings got started - sometimes, things are like that.

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