Yellow Sunset Ice Crystals and Flicker Eurydice

Ellen Kesten

One Rotation

“When the moment comes, it is in the act of moving away.

“In New Mexico we feel the moving away of time every day, that passion of beauty and grief when high clouds collide with bright light and dark mountains. Even as we watch, the brilliance changes, fades, leaving us with memory and inexpressible longing. This shifting of light, color and pattern, is my inspiration. These paintings are impressionistic and also recognizably here — high desert, New Mexico at its highest, deepest, most powerfully vivid.”

“As an artist my intent is to paint fluidly, moving quickly to catch that light, that phrase of cloud on desert floor, until the moment is gone.”

— Ellen Kesten

Comet Cumulus & Rainbow

Solo Exhibition

  • New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science, 2007

Juried Shows

  • Inpost Artspace, Albuquerque, NM 1999
  • South Broadway Cultural Center, Albuquerque, NM 1998
  • Boise Art Museum, Boise, ID 1992
  • Eugene Public Library, Eugene, OR 1983
  • National Museum of Ornamental Metalwork, New Orleans, LA 1981
Dusk Melon Shells


  • Cibola Arts Council, Grants, NM 1997-1998
  • Blue-Eyed Indian Bookshop, Laguna, NM 1991-1997
  • Iron Horse Design, Albuquerque, NM 2000-2003
  • Dartmouth Street Gallery, Albuquerque, NM 2004
Seeds Storm Clearing

Public Collections

  • New Mexico Arts, Art in Public Places, Santa Fe, NM 1996
  • British Museum, London, England 1982
  • Archived pen and ink drawings; New Guinea collection


  • Fine Arts
    San Francisco Art Institute, San Francisco, CA
  • Metalsmithing
    University Of Oregon, Eugene, OR
  • Painting
    Maude Kerns Art Center, Eugene, OR

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The North Fourth Art Center is operated by VSA arts of New Mexico, a not-for-profit organization, affiliated with The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the national VSA arts network.