• CANADA Friends & Family Popup/Elisabeth Kley Ceramic Anthology

    CANADA Friends & Family Popup/Elisabeth Kley Ceramic Anthology

    August 16-18, 2017 @ CANADA
    Opening reception August 17, 4:30 - 8:30 PM

    Featuring works by CANADA artists, staff, friends, and family,
    plus an installment and sale of Katherine Bernhardt's
    Magic Flying Carpets of the Berber Kingdom of Morocco.

    333 Broome ST
    NY NY 10002
    212 925 4631


  • The First Ever & Only East Hampton Biennial
    curated by Woobie Bogus and Adrianne Rubinstein
    July 7, 8, 9 2017, 1-8 PM
    Opening reception, Saturday July 8, 4-8 PM
    The Barn: East Hampton, NY

    RSVP for address and directions; firsteverandonlyEHB@gmail.com

  • Flaming June VII (Flaming Creatures)
    June 8 – August 5, 2017

    Lisa Anne Auerbach, Judie Bamber, Amy Bessone, Andrew Brischler, Zoe Buckman, Willie Cole, Mike Davis, Lecia Dole-Recio, Judith Eisler, Alexandra Grant, Keith Haring, David Haxton, Nir Hod, Timothy Horn, Elisabeth Kley, Kelly Lamb, Bovey Lee, Michael Manning, Maynard Monrow, David Mramor, Yuval Pudik, Dean Sameshima, Tabboo!, Betty Tompkins, Marnie Weber, T.J. Wilcox, and Rob Wynne.

    Gavlak Los Angeles
    1034 N. HIGHLAND AVE., LOS ANGELES, CA 90038

  • NUT is an all women’s publication devoted to celebrating and fostering the female artist community. 57 works on paper by women artists compose the first volume.
    Through the donation of 100% of book sale proceeds to the Global Fund for Women we hope to help alleviate women’s adversity in a small way.
    In addition to the initial press of 300 volumes available for purchase at the gallery, 50% of proceeds from artwork sales will also benefit the Global Fund for Women.

    MARCH 24 - APRIL 21, 2017

    Brendan Burzinski, David Goodman, Elisabeth Kley, Jessie Holmes, Leslie Baum, Rico Gatson, Russel Maltz, Sarah Goffstein, Tommy Mintz, Vadis Turner, William Corwin

    Geary Contemporary
    185 Varick St.
    New York, NY 10014

  • work included in auction to benefit Hillary Clinton

    work included in auction to benefit Hillary Clinton
  • Two Years of Looking
    curated by Erik Hanson
    July 15 - August 28, 2016
    New Art Projects

  • Mayest
    05/01/2016 - 05/29/2016
    curated by Katherine Aungier
    Orgy Park
    Brooklyn NY

  • Jack Pierson: Tomorrow’s Man

    April 21-July 1, 2016

    Sheppard Contemporary
    Church Fine Arts Complex
    University of Nevada

    University Galleries is pleased to announce a new exhibition curated by internationally renowned artist Jack Pierson. First conceived as a publication, the third volume of which was recently released, Tomorrow’s Man has grown into a three dimensional iteration of the bulletin-board, idea mash-up found in the publication and includes many of the artists Pierson finds most interesting and thought provoking. Inspired by a midcentury male physique magazine of the same name, the exhibition Tomorrow’s Man includes artworks by Michael Bilsborough, Stephen Tashjian (Tabboo!), Laurel Sparks, Richard Tinkler, Florence Derive, Chris Bogia, Bryson Rand, David Dupuis, Jeff Davis, Andrea Zittel, Cali DeWitt, Shari Elf, Zak Arctander, Kembra Pfahler, Joe Sinness, Paul Sepuya, Elisabeth Kley, and Peter Fend.

  • Ozymandius

    January 9 - February 14, 2016
    New York, NY

    Canada is pleased to present "Ozymandias" a one-person exhibition by Elisabeth Kley. Ms. Kley's first solo show with the gallery will include works on paper, a wall painting, and ceramic pieces that refer to Weiner Werkstatte, Studio Craft and the history of excessive decoration.

    Kley takes her title from the famous Shelley poem of the same name about a ruined monument to a long forgotten despot. The poem is set in an unnamed strange locale and its themes include hubris and the inevitable decline of empire. It may seem apt, given the current political climate, to consider history as a series of blustery strongmen who naturally fall into the abyss of time. Kley, on the other hand, offers joy instead of pontification. Here we have unabashedly extravagant designs both mysterious and inviting, weightless manifestations of the past.

    Kley’s current black and white ceramic vessels and drawings are inspired by Islamic, Byzantine and Asian historical ornaments and can be described as somewhere between all-over paintings and decorative sculptures. Repeated bold calligraphic patterns are filled with life giving symbols and designs including flower petals and leafy tendrils.

    The vessels are made from hand rolled coils and fired in an electric kiln in her studio. Decorations are applied using homemade underglazes with wax resist and sgraffito. The artworks are not only beautiful to look at but are also made with an artisan’s care and ingenuity. Dripping glazes reveal an appealing unfussy temperament, and forms sometimes seem to imply bulbous fruits like pomegranates or flowers. Although she sometimes renders traditional motifs directly, Kley’s works are rarely strict copies. Instead, they are personal inquiries into visually pleasurable shapes, colors and patterns. Each piece is unique, but also seems to be part of a larger whole.

    November 21, 2015 - January 17, 2016
    Catinca Tabacaru Gallery
    New York, NY

  • Ten Year Anniversary
    GAVLAK Los Angeles
    November 6 – December 23, 2015

  • Harum Scarum

    Florence Derive * Elisabeth Kley * Jack Pierson * Richard Tinkler
    August 21 - September 10, 2015
    Albert Merola Gallery
    Provincetown, MA

  • Summer Group Exhibition
    July 25 – August 29, 2015
    Gavlak Los Angeles East Gallery

  • Gavlak Palm Beach Summer Show 2015
    July 10 – September 30, 2015

  • Inside the Episode
    curated by Jack Pierson
    June 20 - July 26, 2015
    LAUNCH F18
    New York, NY

  • translucent threads of dawn

    Regina Rex
    New York, NY

    6/14/2015- 7/26/2015

    Elisabeth Kley
    Conrad Ventur

    “Mentally, perhaps she was already three parts glass. So intense was her desire to set up a commemorative window to herself that, when it was erected, she believed she must leave behind in it, for ever, a little ghost. And should this be so, then what joy to be pierced each morning with light; her body flooded through and through by the sun, or in the evening to glow with a harvest of dark colours, deepening into untold sadness with the night….What ecstasy! It was the Egyptian sighing for his pyramid, of course.”
    -Ronald Firbank, Vainglory

    Translucent threads of dawn brings together a selection of Elisabeth Kley's ceramic cages with Conrad Ventur's photographs of the underground film star and performer Mario Montez. Kley's flamboyant, yet menacing cages incorporate a range of ornamental motifs--from Chinese and Persian to the Victorian era. The exuberant sheen of the colored glazes adorns only the outside of each cage leaving the interior with a rough, raw clay surface, creating two visual worlds within one object. While the cage is inherently an object of exclusion, in Kley's cage's interior and exterior are in constant conversation, creating a complex persona that embraces multiple psychologies of space and display. Ventur's intimate portraits of Mario Montez, who starred in seminal films by Jack Smith and Andy Warhol in the '60s, were made after Montez reemerged into the art world after a 35 year hiatus. Staging scenarios with Montez sometimes dressed as past characters from films such as Smith's Flaming Creatures (1963) and others, Ventur's photographs present a fluid approach to archiving the activity of a timeless performer. For Ventur, Montez is "collaborator, drag mother and gay grandfather—all in one," and like the screen-test (a form that Ventur has also worked with), these images portray a subject whose character cannot be confined by a single identity or static image, but will always transcend the medium through their performative spirit.

  • A Sign of Eternal Beauty

    February 6 - March 7, 2015
    GAVLAK Palm Beach

    GAVLAK Palm Beach proudly presents "A Sign of Eternal Beauty," an exhibition of new works by two accomplished and under-recognized artists, Florence Derive and Elisabeth Kley, showing together for the first time. The show will include paintings, ceramics, and works on paper. The title of the exhibition stems from Jack Pierson's 2013 poem inspired by Derive's paintings and persona, and it unites with Elisabeth Kley's shared dramatic sense of gestural flourish employing shape and color motivated by natural forms. The artists paired here find voice separately represented by a grouping of entirely singular images and sculptures, while simultaneously engaging in a command of expression about repeat pattern and divergence, seasonal change, and the timelessness and power of voluptuous color.

  • Pick One
    1/11/2015- 2/22/2015
    New York, NY, 10002

  • Prophetic Diagrams
    curated by Will Corwin
    October 25- December 19, 2014
    Cheymore Gallery, Tuxedo, NY

  • work included in Tomorrow’s Man 2

    Edited and designed by Jack Pierson and Roger Bywater
    Published by Bywater Bros. Editions, 2014
    112 pages, softcover
    10 x 7.25 inches / 25.4 x 18.4 cm

    ISBN 978-0-9780789-9-7

  • Anthropocene
    July 25 - August 22, 2014
    New York, NY

    curated by Sam Gordon
    June 27 - August 16, 2014
    Andrew Edlin Gallery
    New York, NY

  • NADA New York, May 9-11 2014

    Work on view and available at NADA New York 2014 in booths of Season and Regina Rex.

  • 39 great jones

    Large ceramic sun installed in window at 39 Great Jones Street, May - June 2014 (curated by Ugo Rondinone)

  • Triple Masquerade: Ink Drawings, Vessels, Notebooks

    February 28 - March 30 2014
    Schema Projects
    92 St. Nicholas Avenue
    Brooklyn, NY 11237

  • Claxons at Haunch of Venison NY

    19 JUL - 17 AUG 2012

    Haunch of Venison is pleased to present Claxons, a group show curated by art critic Walter Robinson. The show will feature works by ceramic artist Elisabeth Kley, glass artist John Drury, painter Robert Goldman and Robinson. The exhibition aims to present underrepresented artists with an idiosyncratic sensibility. The title of the show Claxons (or loud horns) refers to the idea that artists create dissonance and cacophony. “It’s about letting oneself be carried along by events rather than trying to steer a clear path,” explained Robinson. “Each artist’s work is disturbed, either through subject matter that focuses on outcasts or through execution of materiality.”
    Kley will present a selection of her painted ceramic pots and drawings that exemplify her interest in drag culture and extravagance. Depicted in vivid colors, her ceramic pieces reference Gothic ornamentation, Islamic, Roman and Byzantium styles, and thus resemble ceremonial vestiges. One highlight is her drawing Large Ethyl Eichelberger that captures the flamboyant essence of American drag performer Ethyl Eichelberger in an elongated and dramatic form.

    550 West 21st Street
    New York, NY 10011

  • The Queen's Feathers

    John Tevis is pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Elisabeth Kley, The Queen’s Feathers, from 7 March through 7 April, 2012.

    The gallery will exhibit six hand-inked prints by Elisabeth Kley. These works are rubbed and printed on Japanese and Thai paper using a series of plates made from Styrofoam into which the artist has drawn, cut and gouged her images of peacocks. Kley’s interest in the spectacular costume of these male animals evolved from her interest in drag as an extreme transformation. Unfolding their tails, peacocks undergo a metamorphosis akin to that of a man who changes his everyday appearance to become a fabulously artificial version of a woman. Designed to theatrically accessorize the domestic interiors of a flamboyant world, the artist’s prints are made for fantasized homes that could belong to the aging dandies she has drawn for years, including Salvador Dali, Erté, Coco Chanel, Elsie de Wolfe, Jack Smith, Ethyl Eichelberger and Candy Darling.

    John Tevis Gallery
    Paris, France

  • Solo exhibition in Tbilisi, Georgia

    Elisabeth Kley
    Peacock and Bottles
    Georgian National Museum, National Gallery
    Tbilisi, Georgia

    November 1 - November 10, 2011
    presented by Nana Kipiani as part of Artisterium IV


    FALL 2011




  • Birdhouses and Birdbaths

    Ceramics by Elisabeth Kley

    October 1 - October 31, 2010
    Le Petit Versailles
    346 East Houston Street at Avenue C

  • alLuPiNiT Vol. 3

    some photos and a transcription of Tabboo!'s the Nightingale are included in
    Tabboo! issue
    Fall/Winter 2009-10
    Vol. 3 $15 SD*

    copies available at Participant Inc 253 Houston St. NYC wed-sun 12-7

    December 4th – January 24th, 2010
    A.M. Richard Fine Art
    Brooklyn, NY

  • Bazvalon: Drawing and Ceramics

    October 13 - December 15, 2009
    Rose Burlingham Projects
    New York, NY

    “Oh help me heaven,” she prayed, “to be decorative and to do right!” Ronald Firbank.

    Bazvalon is an imaginary place invented by Ronald Firbank, the early twentieth century English eccentric, author and aesthete. "Aside from Duchesses, Mr. Firbank has a predilection for water-closets and the more wayward aspects of sex- all treated with the subtlest of subtlety." Firbank is one of Elisabeth Kley’s beloved host of dandies; Jean Cocteau, Salvador Dali, Erte, Elsie de Wolfe, Jack Smith and the drag performance artist Ethyl Eichelberger, who, like Firbanks’ character, St. Laura de Nazi-anzi, were “not born organically good.”

    Guardian angels and guides, whose rare volumes litter Kley’s studio floor along with well-thumbed books on Turkish embroidery, Chinese architecture and the Alhambra Palace in Granada - inspire her highly refined practice. “ There was a pause- just long enough for an angel to pass, flying slowly.”

    Firbank’s titles alone -Vainglory, The Flower Beneath the Foot, The Princess Zoubaroff, Concerning the Eccentricities of Cardinal Pirelli, evoke a carefree, more stylish time. As E.M. Forster said of Firbank, "It is frivolous stuff and how rare, how precious is frivolity!"

  • Drawings in alLuPiNiT

    A drawing of Dali is on the cover (and a drawing of Amanda Lear is inside)
    of alLuPiNiT, a magazine edited by Rafael Sanchez and Kathleen White:

    copies available at Participant Inc 253 Houston St. NYC wed-sun 12-7

    who do you want to be? Vol. 2 $10 SD*

    RATS !!!

  • Solo Exhibition at Momenta Art

    Elisabeth Kley
    January 26 - February 26, 2007

    Momenta is pleased to present Elisabeth Kley's first solo exhibition. This extensive and ambitious exhibition traverses drawing, ceramics, and video to present an exotic world of extravagant personalities and architecture. Pencil and ink collaged portraits, drawn and ceramic pavilions, fountains, and peacocks, and a video of a drag performance combine to construct a baroque, enveloping environment.


    The Aesthetic Gold of a Ravished Spouse of the Godhead

    Review of two books on Forrest Bess, published in Art Journal, Fall 2014

    Essay on Tabboo! published in Tabboo! The Art of Stephen Tashjian

    Very Cute for You, essay by Elisabeth Kley published in Tabboo! The Art of Stephen Tashjian, edited by Lia Gangitano, the first monograph on the legendary underground painter, puppeteer, performer.

    Essay on Tabboo! published in Dead Flowers

    Tabboo!'s Fairy Tale Renaissance, essay by Elisabeth Kley published in Dead Flowers, catalogue of a 2010 exhibition curated by Lia Gangitano at Vox Populi, Philadelphia and Participant Inc., New York.

    Writing for Artnet Magazine 2008 - 2012