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 Richard Ellis  (1938 - )

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Lived/Active: New York      Known for: deep sea wildlife-sharks

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Ad Code: 4
Richard Ellis
from Auction House Records.
Permit, 1973
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
Biography from
Richard Ellis is currently recognized as a foremost artist of marine and natural history subjects. From his youth spent on the beaches of Long Island, he has been deeply involved with the sea and the animals that live in it. As a marine biologist, Ellis brings to his art a unique respect and understanding for the ocean. In order to portray the fishes, whales and sharks that he does well, he has studied them from every vantage point. Trained as a Scuba diver and an underwater photographer, he has spent hundreds of hours in, on, and under the ocean, in search of his subjects and the accurate representation of their environment. Hours of painstaking research go into each painting, so that his work is not only scientifically accurate, but strikingly beautiful as well.
For him there is no distinction between art and illustration. A painting done to illustrate a magazine article will often end up in a prestigious private collection or in a museum. (He has already done two murals for museums, one in Buffalo, New York, and the other in Denver, Colorado). Because his work is so precise, it has been used to fulfill the demanding requirements of scientific papers, but his sense of the quality of luminescent underwater light and composition are so dramatic that his paintings transcend illustration and become art in its purest sense.

In 1974, he spent one year researching the ten paintings of the great whales that would win him world-wide recognition. These paintings, done for Audobon magazine, are considered the most moving and accurate pictures of whales ever done. Among the enthusiastic responses to this achievement was an editorial in the New York Times, and the selection of one of the paintings as the cover illustration for Audubon, the first painting to be so used in fifteen years.
In the area of scientific expertise, Ellis has been a consultant to museums from Boston to Hawaii. (Ellis was the designer of the Hall of the Biology of Fishes at the Museum of Natural History in New York). He is an author as well as an artist, and has written dozens of scientific and popular magazines, and he is also the author & illustrator of "The Book Of Sharks".

One-Man Shows
Schoolhouse Gallery, Florida Sportsman's Edge, Ltd., New York Abercrombie & Fitch, New York New Bedford Whaling Museum,
Mystic Seaport Museum, Connecticut The Newark Museum, New Jersey South Street Seaport Museum,
New York
Denver Museum of Natural History,
Mansfield Art Center, Ohio
Field Museum, Illinois
California Academy of Sciences,
The Art Emporium, Washington American Museum of Natural History,
New York
Illustrations Have Appeared In: New York Magazine
Scientific American
Audubon Magazine
National Wildlife
Readers Digest
Explorers Journal
Florida Naturalist
New York Times Magazine National Geographic
American Artist
Skin Diver
National Parks
Nautical Quarterly
Ocean World
Sport Diver

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