About NKS

About NKS

Solomon makes paintings that interrogate painting. She is a painter who is always breaking with the conventions of painting and pushing paint to be its own structure. Solomon chooses substrate as a set of questions and opportunities, not a given. Solomon is not interested in making traditional paintings, she experiments with materials to see what they can say about painting. Solomon use toxic chemical colors in a refined field of emptiness with no recourse to paint about the stuff of our guts. These are paintings about conversation and their omissions, about driving and talking.

“I make Zen Pop paintings In Pursuit of the Blob”. Solomon’s works  are both about the act of painting and her experience of great western landscapes, interior and exterior terrains, and the shock of unabsorbed events. She works reductively to communicate the power of an experience rather than narrate it. Solomon’s legacy with architecture and Supergraphics laid a foundation for her work.

Having studied architecture at The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in New York, she holds a BA in Art from University of California Santa Cruz, and an MFA from California College of the Arts. She taught at Stanford University and California College of the Arts. Solomon has worked as an artist assistant to David Ireland, and in architectural restoration on the Palazzo St Polo in VeniceShe lived in Paris, Venice, Barcelona, and New York City before returning to California.

Solomon’s work has received extensive critical acclaim, and been featured in Art in America, Huffington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, Art Practical, Wallpaper, Harvard Review, ArtBlitzLA, Zyzzyva, NYTheatre, and Architectural Digest, among other publications.

She has exhibited at The Berkeley Art Museum Pacific Film ArchiveCrocker Art Museum, Bolinas Museum, Brian Gross Fine Art, Braunstein/Quay, The Battery, Ochi Projects LA, Ochi Gallery Sun Valley, N’Namdi Contemporary in Chicago, Detroit, and Miami. Her work is collected by Steve Wynn, Blue Shield, Visa, Yves Béhar, Sabrina Buell, and The Berkeley Art Museum.

While Solomon’s studio life can be esoteric, her home life is bucolic. A longtime surfer at The Patch in Bolinas, she lives in a cottage with her daughter and Cannoli the bunny.

Quotes on NKS

Solomon’s works walk the line between attraction and repulsion… These are punk paintings — direct, in our face, muscular, and messy, cheekily thumbing their nose at good taste and order. They share a kinship with the works of a very different artist, Marilyn Minter, whose hyper-realistic paintings revel in a similar combination of glamour and trash, sensuality and revulsion.
Matt Stromberg, LA freelance visual arts writer
Bursting out of current painting expectation with relentless physicality, Nellie King Solomon’s work is big brash post-punk and expressionistic … Solomon is thoroughly sophisticated and historically conscious.
Natasha Boas PhD, Int. Independent Curator
Working with new authority … we have only begun to see what Solomon may make of it.
SF Chronicle
Kenneth Baker,
By venturing outside the narrow confines of historic color field painting Solomon paradoxically presents a beautiful argument for the continued relevance.
Art Practical
Matt Stromberg,
Only the sheer unforced lushness of Solomon’s work … the eye out for pleasure says yes to the drift, looseness and generosity of Solomon’s work.
SF Chronicle
Kenneth Baker,
Nellie King Solomon’s work fits no definition of painting … to defend it as art (you) must referred to paintings of such people as Sam Francis, Morris Louis, and Helen Frankenthaler.
SF Chronicle
Kenneth Baker,
Solomon’s paintings feel like events rather than things… The work is by all accounts beautiful, but beyond looks, there is content to them—they are soulful, vivacious and charismatic—with a story to tell.
OCHI PROJECTS / OCHI GALLERY
Pauli Ochi,
Almost a decade later, the work is stronger than ever.
Huffington Post
Cherie Louise Turner,
Nellie’s work straddles a great deal of historic terrain in painting, and never quite sits still.  I find her lack of intimidation and head-first approach to painting exciting.
Robert Gunderman, Former co-owner of ACME
A lively installation of painterly compositions by Nellie King Solomon.
Art in America
Stephanie Cash,
Wildly popular in her native San Francisco … they’re meant to be shared with everybody.
Wynn Las Vegas Collection
Steve Wynn,
The work looks great! Very bold and alive. Nice combination of color, shape, and gesture.
BAMPFA
Lawrence Rinder (Museum Director),
Yes!
Larry Warsh (Ai Weiwei’s New York dealer)