Anthony Smith


Anthony Smith received a B.A. in Fine Arts from Amherst College (1999) and an M.F.A. in Painting from the University of Michigan (2001). Smith also studied wood-block printmaking in Kyoto, Japan at Kyoto Seika University in 2001. He has recently showed in the “Mid-Atlantic Painting 2016” exhibit at the University of Mary Washington Fredericksburg, Virginia in 2016. Notable exhibits include the “Tribute to Michelangelo” show at CrisolArts Gallery in Barcelona, Spain in 2013, the Art Now: Painting 2015 exhibit at the Ann Arbor Art Center in Ann Arbor Michigan, the 2014 “Artist Chain Reaction Competition” at the Andrew Freedman Home in the Bronx, the 2013 Fuse Arts Infrastructure Cigar Factory and Schoen's Building shows in Allentown PA, and the 2010 “Sailing the Barbarous Coast” show (which traveled to the New Art Center in Newton, MA, University Galleries, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA and the Walker Point Art Center, Milwaukee, WI). Also notable was the 2008 “Runaway” show at the University of Texas Pan-American Gallery in McAllen TX for which he received a Puffin Foundation grant. He has been reviewed in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Boston Globe, The Detroit Free Press, The Ann Arbor News and the Artist’s Magazine.

Anthony has taught at such institutions as the University of Michigan, Parsons, Princeton and Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) in Baltimore, Maryland. Smith served as an artist –in-residence at the National Academy of Design from 2006 to 2008. Most recently he has taught at Lehigh University in Bethlehem Pa (2012), and as a visiting artist at Muhlenberg College in Allentown Pa (2014/2015). He lives In the Bronx and Allentown Pennsylvania with a studio at the Banana Factory Art Center in Bethlehem, PA.


I use abstract painting to explore complex and indefinite moral positions and to tell inscrutable stories. I begin with simple sketches that over time become stylized, coalescing into calligraphic forms contributing to an intricate yet dense topography of layered line work, paint, and collage. Most of my works comprise larger series, which illustrate a theme or communicate visual narratives using a consistent set of patterns, colors and other ephemera that are always placed in a specific order. My sequential process is not unlike comic book art, where individual works can be both edited and hermetic while parts of a larger story. Although private narratives are essential to my creative process, I use them only to the end of producing works that move the viewer to impose his or her own personal experience into them, making for a reception that is as varied and complex as the viewers themselves. I aim in my work to create an orderly-but-exotic universe that invites play by the viewer by simultaneously including familiar and appropriated imagery and then eluding precise or didactic storytelling. My pieces often begin with a set of compositional rules that change over the life of a series as I respond to the materials, initial, guiding narrative, and the development of my mark making. My goal in changing elements in a series is to toy with, or even to thwart, the viewer's expectations in order to spark inquiry into the role that memory plays as ballast for visual understanding.


Anthony Smith, Jr. 25 W. 3rd St studio #245, Bethlehem, PA (studio), (610) 533-3110 (Mobile) 655 Burke Ave Apt 4I, New York, NY 10467 (residence)

Selected Shows

2014: Scope Art, “Art Takes Miami”, Miami Beach, Florida; Metrospace Gallery, “0, 0, 0: A Collage Show” Lansing, MI; State Theater, “Arts Community of Easton Fall Show”, Easton, Pennsylvania; Art on Astor Row, “The Sum of Histories”, Harlem, New York; The Detroit Center, The University of Michigan “The UpstART Festival”, Detroit, MI; The University of Michigan School of Social Work, “Social Justice Art Festival”, Ann Arbor, MI; The Andrew Freedman Home, “Artist Chain Reaction Competition”, Bronx, New York

2013 • Tribute to Michelangelo, Crisolart Galleries, Barcelona, Spain • New Bridge Group Summer Group Show, Eiffe Gallery, Moravian College, Bethlehem, PA • The Ode to Water, Allentown Art Works, Allentown, Pennsylvania • Affordable Art Show, SpaceWomb Gallery, New York, New York 2012 •Grammar of the Elite, Gallery Project, Ann Arbor, Michigan 2010 •Sailing the Barbarous Coast, New Art Center in Newton, Newton, Massachusetts; University Galleries, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA; Walker Point Art Center, Milwaukee, WI 2009 •Race, Gallery Project, Ann Arbor, Michigan 2008 •Runaway, The UTPA Gallery, McAllen, Texas 2007 •Identity and Expression, Gallery Project, Ann Arbor Michigan •On Your Mark, Contemporary Drawing, Spensertown Academy Arts Center, Spensertown, NY •Three Graphic Narratives, Rainy River Exhibit Hall, International Falls, MN •Loud, ALL (Arts and Literature Laboratory) Gallery, New Haven CT 2006 •181st Annual Exhibition, National Academy of Design, Manhattan •Duality: La Muerte y La Vida, The UTPA Gallery, McAllen, Texas •On Paper/Of Paper, Art League of Long Island, Dix Hill, New York •Terms of Use, 555 Gallery, Detroit, Michigan •Disarmed, Arlington Center for the Arts, Arlington, Massachusetts 2005 •Icograms, New Art Center in Newton, Newton, Massachusetts •The Impermanent Collection II, The 'temporary Museum of Painting, Brooklyn, New York 2004 •Group Show, Harlem World, Studio Museum of Harlem, Manhattan 2001 •Anniversary Exhibition, Studio 4 West, Piermont, New York 2000 •CWA National Multimedia Juried Show, Houston Memorial Museum, Huntsville, Texas

Reviews and Criticism

• Rafael Francisco Sala, ““Sailing the Barbarous Coast” at WPCA” Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 7/6/2010 • Faye Whitbeck, “Artist exhibit at RRCC represents diverse and impressive background” The Daily Journal, International Falls, MN, 4/5/07 • Lisa Wurster, “25 under 40”, (profile of work), The Artist’s Magazine, 3/2007 • Christine Temin, “With disparate views, they vividly evoke city life,” (review of show at New Art Center, Newton, MA), The Boston Globe, 4/20/2005 • Denise Taylor, “Dance and politics mix; a spring fling in Framingham,” (preview of show at New Art Center, Newton, MA) The Boston Globe, 4/15/2005 • Herbert Muschamp, “Metaphors Rise In Harlem Sky,” (review of show at Studio Museum in Harlem) The New York Times, 2/13/2004 • Keri Guten Cohen, “Moodiness cements a strong, tight show,” (review of show at Paint Creek Center for the Arts, MI) Detroit Free Press, 9/10/2001

Grants and Awards

• Puffin Foundation Grant Recipient, 2007 • Rackham Discretionary Fellowship, University of Michigan, 2001 • The Redstone Award, University of Michigan, 2000 • Rackham Merit Fellowship, University of Michigan, 1999-2001


• Kyoto Seika University, Kyoto, Japan, (2001) Study Abroad in Printmaking • University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI (1999 - 2001) MFA in Painting • Amherst College, Amherst, MA (1995 - 1999) B A in Fine Arts and Political Science

Anthony Smith Jr. • 1536 Walnut Street, Allentown, Pa 18102 (studio)• 655 Burke Ave Apt 4I, New York, NY 10467 (residence) • [email protected]