Daniel Greene is a leading pastelist and oil painter who is known for his portrait commissions which hang in the White House, the Smithsonian and the Metropolitan Museum of Art as well as his paintings in series such as the New York subway series, the auction series and the series of drinking glasses.
Greene dropped out of high school in Cincinnati and traveled to Miami where he stayed with relatives and made money selling pastel portraits on the street in order to save up for art school. Years later after he attended the Art Students League in New York City, he taught there and at the National Academy of Design. A renowned teacher he continues to give workshops and produce videos. He has written two books, "Pastel" and "The Art of Pastel" which are highly regarded in the field.
In 1983, he was the first living artist inducted into the Pastel Hall of Fame. He also received the John Singer Sargent Award for lifetime excellence in portraiture and the Medal of Honor from the Portrait Society of America. He has won Gold Medals from both the Portrait Society of America and and the Salmagundi Club.
In May 2003, he conducted the Grand Opening Demonstration at the International Association of Pastel Societies.
"The Pastel Journal" 11/2002 and 6/2005
"Plein Air Magazine" 8/2005
Daniel E. Greene is a former instructor of painting at the National Academy of Design* and the Art Students League* of New York. He is the author of the book Pastel
, that has now been in print for 25 years and the Art of Pastel
, which was, along with Pastel
, published in English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, and Chinese. He has taught over 10,000 students, and his books and videos have reached in excess of 100,000 artists worldwide.
In 1983, the Pastel Society of America* elected him to the Pastel Hall of Fame. In 1989, his work represented the United States at the First International Biennial of Pastel in San Quentin, France. In 1992, he was awarded American Artist's Magazine
's first Lifetime Achievement Award in the category of oil painting and the Oil Painters of America Society inducted him into their Hall of Fame.
In 1995, the American Society of Portrait Artists* presented the John Singer Sargent Award to Daniel Greene for life long dedication to the Achievement of Excellence in Portraiture. In 2001, he was awarded the gold medal of the American Portrait Society. In 2003, Mr. Greene was the annual honoree of the Salmagundi Club* and was also presented with with gold medal award of achievement.
Mr. Greene's painting and pastel art works are in over 700 public and private collections in the United States and overseas. He has been the recipient of the Elizabeth T. Greenshields Foundation Grant and the Anna Lee Stacey Grant. Four highly successful exhibitions of his subway series appeared at Gallery Henoch in New York and were featured on ABC-TV, News Day.com, Fox News, PBS, CNN, New York 1, NBC, NHK TV Japan, The New York Times
, and in over 50 more international magazines and newspapers.
His recent exhibition, titled, "Subway Paintings" at the New York Transit Museum at Grand Central Terminal was the inaugural event in the centennial year of the New York subway and a compilation of his subway paintings represented New York City on the cover of the official guide to the Republican National Convention.
He is highly regarded as a portrat artists and his subjects include leaders of government, banking, education, and industry. A few of his earlier works include Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, astronaut Walter Schirra, author Ayn Rand, and William Randolph Hearst.
Some of his governmental portraits include Governor Scott of North Carolina, Governor Laxalt of Nevada, Governor Beliles of Virginia, Governor Lehman of New York, and two of New York City's Mayors have also been included in his popular portraits.
Some of his later portraits include Dave Thomas of Wendy's, Governor Fob James of Alabama, Commentator Rush Limbaugh, Congressmen Billy Tauzin and Larry Combest, composer Alan Menken and Bryant Gumbel, and Bob Schieffer of CBS.
More recent portraits were of Governor Benjamin Cayetano of Hawaii and former Secretary of Agriculture Ann Veneman. A partial list of sitters includes the Chairmen of the Boards of Honeywell, Coca-Cola Company, Dupont Corporation, American Express, the New York Stock Exchange, and I.B.M. Mr. Greene has also painted the Deans, Presidents, and Benefactors of Tufts, Duke, Columbia, North Carolina, West Point, Delaware, Penn State, New York, Princeton, Rutgers, Yale and Harvard Universities.
* For more in-depth
information about these terms and others, see AskART.com Glossary
Daniel Greene was born in 1934 in Cincinnati, Ohio. As a young
man, he developed a passion for drawing and "never veered from the
course he charted in 1953, when, fresh out of high school, he commenced
upon his career as a figure painter." (1)
He began his formal studies at the Art Academy of Cincinnati from 1944
to 1946. Afterward, he moved to New York City, where he became immersed
in the academic pedagogy of traditional figure painting. Greene
studied with the painter Robert Brackman (a student of George Bellows
and Robert Henri) at the Art Students League from 1953 to 1955.
It was in New York that, contrary to the overwhelming prevalence of
Abstract Expressionism among the art establishment, he inaugurated a
career as a realist painter.
He taught painting and drawing in an atelier style at the Art Students
League and the National Academy of Design from the 1960s to the
Greene became known as a painter of narrative figure
compositions. In the 1980s, he began a series of "environmental
portraits" centered on the New York City subway that evolved from flat,
abstract motifs to large, figural compositions. Later he executed
a series of works based upon the art auction house, where he
metaphorically explored the relationship between the artist and the
His academic background and inherent capabilities have provided Greene
with great versatility and technical virtuosity. Stephen Doherty
has written that Greene's work transcends the mere description of
things: "But going beyond the technical achievement, Greene's figure
and still life paintings are compositions of provocative images.
The viewer knows that each shape and color holds a fascination for the
artist because they are presented in a way that provokes a similar
response from us." (2)
Throughout his career, Greene has also maintained an interest in still
life painting. He freely combines found objects and presents them
in traditional compositions that are sometimes jarring. As critic
Judd Tully notes, Green's "shamanistic bouts with painted space agitate
the traditional notions of still life." (3)
Daniel Greene has also achieved national distinction as a painter of
portraits. He has been commissioned to paint the likeness of
authors, astronauts, politicians, entertainers, educators and captains
Daniel Greene has achieved international acclaim as a pastelist.
He is the author of two books: Pastel and the Art of Pastel,
which have been published in eight languages. He has received
numerous grants and awards for his pastels and paintings.
His works can be found in over 400 public and private collections,
including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Smithsonian and the White
House. He maintains his studio in North Salem, New York.
1. Michael J. Burlingham, Daniel E. Greene: Auctions, Subway, and Still Lifes, exhibition catalogue, (New York: Hollis Taggert Galleries, 2000): 2.
2. M. Stephen Doherty, "An Emphasis On Values: The Art and Teaching of Daniel Greene". American Artist, (October 1985): 4.
3. Judd Tully, "Daniel Greene—Still Lifes That Don't Sit Still", introduction to the exhibition catalogue, Daniel Greene, Pastels and Paintings, (New York: Gallery Henoch, 1985) 2.
Submitted by staff, Columbus Museum