Contact Kathleen Elsey

Where to Find Works by Kathleen Elsey

Visit Kathleen Elsey painting studio when your travels bring you near the coastal town of Santa Barbara, California by emailing in advance for an appointment. You will see my bright and bold paintings in their beginning and nearly finished stages as well as framed paintings covering the walls of my studio. I have several exhibitions coming up with details here. A broad range of Kathleen Elsey fauvist paintings may also be seen at

Kathleen Elsey is represented by:

Biography of Kathleen Elsey

I have been a New Fauve for nine years and am honored to be painting and exhibiting with this talented group of master painters. You can see more of my paintings at My fauvist expressionist brushwork is full of bright and bold shapes. My compositions range from a simple slice of watermelon on a table in a favorite restaurant in Taos, New Mexico to a multitude of figures on a crowded beach in Santa Barbara, California. Kathleen Elsey, New Fauve

“Kathleen Elsey paintings exerts a bold, post-Fauvist-meets-punk touch in her work. “Sunlit Room,” for one, flirts with burly Van Gogh effects, with a vivified palette and brusque brushwork. It’s the mightiest and most memorable painting in the room.” 
Josef Woodard-–Santa Barbara News Press 2008

I teach plein air and studio painting workshops in New Mexico, California, Ohio and New York. I had several exhibitions in 2014 and am now painting for a 2016 solo exhibition with Thos. Moser in San Francisco. I was interviewed by Daniel Kepl of Bravo California. To watch this discussion about my paintings visit "Bravo! California."

I have been painting for over twenty five years. Those paintings tell more about me than words can express. To see the best and favorite paintings which have sold over the past years, visit this page of my website.  “Kathleen Elsey paintings are marked by rich colors and dramatic brush strokes that recall both Impressionist and Fauvist traditions.”  
Daedalus Howell–San Francisco Chronicle 2001

Kathleen Elsey was born and raised in Ohio and migrated to San Francisco in 1973. She enjoyed a career in art direction and design management with Hewlett Packard for 10 years. After a two year sabatical in Portugal as an aerobics instructor, Elsey settled once again in San Francisco. In 1985, she formed Kathleen Elsey Design, Inc. and designed logos, brochures and web sites for companies including Tivo, Xerox, and Silicon Graphics. In 1998 she closed the doors of her design studio to devote her energy to the fine arts. Since then has Elsey paintings have been exhibited in galleries and museums across the country. She is a juror and a painting workshop instructor. Currently, she teaches Kathleen Elsey Painting Workshops for acrylic and oil painters in Sonoma,  Santa Barbara and Taos, New Mexico. You will find more information about Kathleen Elsey painting workshops at

Kathleen Elsey Artist Statement

I am a contemporary American painter focusing on interiorscape, landscape, sea scape and still life. My paintings are marked with rich colors and dramatic brush strokes recalling Expressive and Fauvist traditions. My new paintings on canvas include beach scenes and paintings of interiors with interesting assemblages of shapes and colors. In my search for shapes, colors and light, my work tends to become more abstract. More information about Kathleen Elsey biography is available on my website. For a visual journey of the past twenty years of my life, my historical paintings tell the story.


  • 1967-1971   Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree, Honors Program
  • 1980   UC Davis, Chico, CA Fine Arts travel/study program, London, Paris, Basel
  • 1988-present   Post-graduate drawing & painting, Foothill College, College of Marin. Private studies with Michael Loffredo, Santa Rosa, Ca., Rick Stich, Santa Barbara, Ca.

Kathleen Elsey Solo Exhibitions

  • 2016 Solo exhibition Thos. Moser, San Francisco
  • 2014 Solo exhibition Thos. Moser, San Francisco
  • 2012 Solo exhibition Thos. Moser, San Francisco
  • 2011-2012 Solo painting exhibition Chalk Hill Winery, Healdsburg, Ca. 
  • 2011   Solo exhibition Thos. Moser, San Francisco
  • 2009  "Brush with Life," July 1 - August 28, Divine Inspiration Gallery, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2009   “Inside Out," Elsey painting exhibition March & April Architectural Foundation, Santa Barbara, California
  • 2006   “New Paintings by Kathleen Elsey,” Lagerquist Gallery, Atlanta Ga
  • 2006   “Wild Color, Elsey Paintings,” William Lester Gallery, Pte. Reyes, Ca
  • 2003   “Burst of Color, Elsey Paintings,” Sun Valley Gallery, Sun Valley, Id
  • 2003   "Bone to the Beach, Elsey Paintings," California Collectors Gallery, Kentfield, California
  • 2002   The Marine Gallery, Kirkland, Wa
  • 2002   Edmunds Fine Art Gallery, Sonoma, Ca

Group Exhibitions

  • 2015 Sullivan Goss Holiday exhibition
  • 2014 Sullivan Goss Holiday exhibition
  • 2012 "At the Beach" Kamp Gallery, Chicago
  • 2012 Santa Barbara Museum of Art "Off the Wall"
  • 2012 "The Salty Edge" Elsey Paintings, Santa Barbara Maritime Museum two-woman exhibition
  • 2009   "120th Annual Exhibition," National Association Women Artists, Salmagundi Art Club, New York, NY
  • 2008   "Small Works," Albuquerque Museum Group Exhibition, October, Albuquerque, NM
  • 2008   “Abstractions,” Bakersfield Museum September - March 09, Bakersfield, Ca
  • 2008   International Society of Acrylic Painters Juried Exhibition, Santa Cruz, Ca
  • 2008   Fielding Institute, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2007   "Figuratively Speaking", Meisel Gallery, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2006   Carmel Plein Air Invitational, Carmel, Ca
  • 2006   Marin/Scapes Invitational Benefit Exhibition, Larkspur, Ca
  • 2005   American Impressionist Society Juried Exhibition, Taos, NM
  • 2005   International Society of Acrylic PaintersExhibition, Seattle, Wa
  • 2005   Carmel Plein Air Invitational, Carmel, Ca Best Oil or Acrylic Painting
  • 2005   Marin/Scapes Invitational Benefit Exhibition, Larkspur, Ca
  • 2004   Marin/Scapes Invitational Benefit Exhibition, Larkspur, Ca
  • 2004   “En Couleur”, Nancy Dodds Gallery, Carmel, Ca
  • 2004   Natural History Museum, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2004“En Couleur-Six Colorists”, William Lester Gallery, Pte. Reyes Station, Ca
  • 2003   National Association of Women Artists’ Juried Exhibition, “Illuminations”, New York, NY
  • 2003   Napa Valley Museum, Plein Air Biennial, Yountville, Ca
  • 2003   Natural History Museum, Historic Mission Canyon, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2003   Attleboro Museum, “Inspired by the Land” National Exhibition, Attleboro, Ma
  • 2002   Sonoma Museum of Visual Art Invitational Exhibition, Santa Rosa, Ca
  • 2001   National Juried Exhibition of Painting, Bristol Art Museum, Bristol, RI
  • 2001   Jemison-Carnegie Museum, Talladega, Al
  • 2001   Carmel Plein Air Invitational Art Festival, Carmel, Ca
  • 2000   Sausalito Art Festival, Sausalito, Ca

Kathleen Elsey Painting Awards/Commissions

  • 2015 Peoples Choice Award Plein Air Painters NM
  • 2015 Award of Excellence, Plein Air Painters NM
  • 2014 Award of Excellence, Plein Air Painters NM
  • 2007   “Golden Award,” International Association of Acrylic Painters
  • 2005   “Best Oil or Acrylic Painting” Carmel Plein Air Festival, Carmel, Ca
  • 2005   “Master Piece Award” Int’l Society Acrylic Painter’s Exhibition, Seattle, Wa. 
  • 2005   Southern California Artists Painting for the Environment, Second Place, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2004   Carmel Plein Air Festival, Honorable Mention, Carmel, Ca
  • 2003    American Impressionist Society Exhibition, Honorable Mention, Vero Beach, Fl
  • 2003   J. Willis Memorial Painting Award, National Association of Women Artists' Annual Exhibition, 5th Ave Gallery, New York, NY

Teaching/Art Related Employment

  • 2000-Present   Kathleen Elsey Painting Workshops, San Francisco, Santa Barbara, Ca., Taos, NM, Chautauqua Institution, NY
  • 2008   Juror for Faulkner Library Solo Exhibitions for 2009, Santa Barbara, Ca
  • 2005 – Present   Juror Santa Barbara Art Association, Goleta Valley Art Association
  • 2001- 2005   “Marketing for the Fine Artist” Workshop, Greater San Francisco area, Ca
  • 2003   Juror Pittsburg Arts Collaborative, Winter Fine Arts Festival, Pittsburg, Ca
  • 2002   Juror Sonoma Cultural Arts Annual Exhibition, Santa Rosa, Ca
  • 1994-1996   Volunteer AIGA art teacher, Cesar Chavez Elementary School, San Francisco, CA
  • 1984-1999   Owner, Kathleen Elsey Design, San Francisco, Ca
  • 1982   UC Santa Cruz Lecture Series “The Artist’s Role in Technology”, Cupertino, Ca
  • 1979-1982   Women in Design, Board of Directors, San Francisco, Ca
  • 1974-1982   Art Director & Design Manager, Hewlett Packard, Cupertino, Ca
  • 1971-1974   American Greetings, Art Director, Cleveland, Oh

News Bibliography

  • 2012   Montecito Magazine, Autumn
  • 2009   CASA Magazine  “Inside Outside” March
  • 2008   Ted Mills, Santa Barbara News Press SCENE, August “The Artist in her Room”
  • 2008   Elizabeth Schwyzer, Santa Barbara Independent “Terra Firma” Exhibition
  • 2008   Josef Woodard, Santa Barbara News Press SCENE, "Artistic Forces Converge" February
  • 2007   Southwest Art – William Lester Gallery
  • 2007   Jo Woodard, Santa Barbara News Press, The Scene, “Of Land Body and Mind
  • 2006   American Art Collector, April, “Flowers in the Landscape”
  • 2004   Passport Magazine, Santa Barbara, “Art from Artists to Remember” 
  • 2004   SOUTHWEST ART, August, En Couleur
  • 2004   ARTS & ANTIQUES, May, Carmel Art Festival, Carmel, Ca
  • 2004   Go! Monterey County, "Complement of Color," Monterey, Ca
  • 2004   SOUTHWEST ART, June, “Best of the West” En Couleur
  • 2003   SOUTHWEST ART, July, “Best of the West” En Couleur
  • 2003   Kirkland Courier, “Destination Kirkland, Washington”
  • 2002   Eastside Seattle Journal, “Kathleen Elsey, California Impressionist Landscapes”
  • 2001   Daedalus Howell, San Francisco Chronicle, “Sonoma County Artist-Brush with Life”
  • 2001   SOUTHWEST ART, May, Best of the West, “In Living Color” (En Couleur)
  • 2001   Mill Valley Herald, “Artist Moves North and Blooms–Elsey Hits Her Stride” Mill Valley, Ca

Professional Affiliations

  • National Association of Women Artists, Signature Member
  • New Mexico Plein Air Painters, Signature Member
  • American Impressionist Society, Signature Member
  • International Society of Acrylic Painters, Signature Member

Learn more about New Fauve Kathleen Elsey and her painting workshops here.