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Elijah Burgher, 2022
Photo by Oliver Coran 

Elijah Burgher, 2022
Photo by Oliver Coran 

Using painting, drawing, and printmaking, Elijah Burgher (b. 1978) works at the crossroads of representation and language, figuration and abstraction, and the real and imagined. Drawing from mythology, ancient history, the occult, and ritual magick, Burgher cultivates a highly intimate code of sigils and emblems imbued with magical power to investigate the personal and cultural dynamics of desire, love, subcultural formation, and the history of abstraction. Burgher lives and works in Berlin. He received an MFA from the School of the Art Institute, Chicago and a BA from Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, New York. His work was featured in Scrivere Disegnando: When Language Seeks Its Other at Centre d'Art Contemporain Genève, Geneva, Switzerland, 2020; Drawn Together Again, FLAG Art Foundation, New York, NY, 2019; For Opacity: Elijah Burgher, Toyin Ojih Odutola, and Nathaniel Mary Quinn at the Drawing Center, 2018; Elijah Burgher: Four Paintings, LAXART, Los Angeles, CA, 2018; the Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY, 2014; Burning Down the House, the Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, Republic of Korea, 2014; and The Temptation of AA Bronson, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, Holland, 2013, among others. He has completed residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture and the Fire Island Artist Residency. His work has been reviewed in The New York Times, Art in America, Art Review and Artforum, among others. 

ELIJAH BURGHER

b. 1978, Kingston, NY
Lives and works in Berlin, Germany

EDUCATION

2004    
M.F.A. School of The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

2002    
Post-baccalaureate Certificate, School of The Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL

2000    
B.A. Sarah Lawrence College, Bronxville, NY

SOLO EXHIBITIONS

2021    
Queen of the Forest, P·P·O·W, New York, NY (forthcoming)

2020    
Until the beasts and all the mountains are wild with divinity, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL

2019    
Elijah Burgher: Four Paintings, LAXArt, Hollywood, CA

2018    
Nudes in the Forest, Ivan Gallery, Bucharest, Romania

2017    
The Dead Know Everything, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL

2015    
Bachelors, Zieher Smith + Horton, New York City, NY

2013    
Friendship as a way of life b/w I’m seeking the Minotaur, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL

2012    
Elijah Burgher, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL

2011    
Elijah Burgher, Topple the Table of Correspondences, 2nd Floor Projects, San Francisco, CA

2010    
Elijah Burgher, Shane Campbell Gallery, Oak Park, IL

SELECT GROUP EXHIBITIONS

2020    
Shag: Provocative Textiles, The Nashville Art Scene, Nashville, TN
Scivere Disegnando, When Language Seeks Its Other, Centre d’Art Contemporain Geneve, Geneva, Switzerland

2019    
Drawn Together Again, FLAG Art Foundation, New York, NY
New Age, New Age: Strategies for Survival, DePaul Art Museum, Chicago, IL
Sperm Cult, LAXArt, Hollywood, CA
For Today I Am a Boy: Contemporary Queer Abstraction, Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA

2018    
For Opacity, The Drawing Center, New York, NY
Intimacy, curated by Stephen Truax, Yossi Milo Gallery, New York, NY
AA Bronson’s Garden der Luste, Kunst-Werke Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin, Germany
Catch me if you can! AA Bronson + General Idea, 1968-2018, Esther Schipper, Berlin, Germany

2017    
Press Your Space Face Close to Mine, curated by Aaron Curry, The Pit, Los Angeles, CA
Nandi, The Condo Assocation, Chicago, IL
Underlying system is not known, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL
The Nothing That Is: A Drawing Show in 5 Parts, curated by Matt Distel and Bill Thelen, The Carnegie, Covington, KY

2016    
Mentors, CFHILL Art Space, Stockholm, Sweden
Broken Flag, curated by Daniel Berger and Omar Kholief, Iceberg Projects, Chicago, IL
Elijah Burgher and Anders Ruhlwald, Paris London Hong Kong, Chicago, IL
Triple Fantasy, Third Man Records, Nashville, TN     
HOMOCCULT 2.0, curated by s+s project and Perras de Museo. Multiple locations, Mexico City
Pierre Guyotat – “La matiere de nos oeuvres,” Azzedine Alaia, Paris, France
Language of the Birds: Occult and Art, curated by Pam Grossman, New York, NY
Chicago and Vicinity, Shane Campbell Gallery, Chicago, IL

2015    
AA Bronson’s Sacre du Printemps, Grazer Kunstverein, Graz, Austria
The Nothing That Is: a drawing show in five parts, curated by Bill Thelen, CAM Raleigh, Raleigh, NC
The Gay Mafia is Real, Western Exhibition, Chicago, IL
River Crossing, Frederic Edwin Church’s Olana, Hudson, NY; Cedar Grove, the Thomas Cole Historic Site, Catskill, NY
Shift: Carl Bogner presents Steve Reinke & Elijah Burgher, Woodland Pattern, Milwaukee, WI
Power Objects: The Future Has a Primitive Heart, UICA, Grand Rapids, MI
New American Paintings: Midwest Edition, curated by Staci Boris, Elmhurst Art Museum, Elmhurst, IL

2014    
Go Stand Next to the Mountain, Hales Gallery, London, United Kingdom
AA Bronson’s House of Shame, 10th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea
Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
Aims for the Birds, curated by James Richards, Cabinet, London, United Kingdom
No fate but what we make, Rhoades College, Memphis, TN
Tony Greene, curated by John Neff, Iceberg Projects, Chicago, IL
In/Situ, organized by Renaud Proch, Independent Curators International, Expo Chicago, Chicago, IL
Rocket Run: Abstraction from Chicago, Elder Gallery, Nebraska Wesleyan University, Lincoln, NE
Das stille Leben des Sammlers Kempinski, curated by Billy Miller and Christian Siekmeier, Exile, Berlin, Germany

2013    
The Temptation of AA Bronson, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art, Rotterdam, The Netherlands
VERBAL – SOMATIC – MATERIAL, The Occult Humanities Conference, New York, NY    
Drawer’s Drawing, curated by Carrie Gundersdorf and Eric Lebofsky, Julius Caesar and Peregrine Program, Chicago, IL
Not only this, but ‘New language beckons us,’ organized by Andrew Blackley for Visual AIDS, Fales Library and Special Collections, New York University, New York, NY

2012    
All Good Things Become Wild and Free, Carthage College, Kenosha, WI
The Great Refusal: Taking on New Queer Aesthetics, Sullivan Galleries, Chicago, IL
Optotype, 92YTribeca, New York, NY
Steve Reinke & Elijah Burgher, Lump, Raleigh, NC

2011    
Queer Chapel, Nofound Photofair, Paris, France
AA Bronson: Queer Spirits and Other Invocations, Esther Schipper, Berlin, Germany
Millie Wilson & Elijah Burgher, Iceberg Projects, MDW Fair, Chicago, IL
View of Outer Space from an Aquarium, Famous Accountants, Brooklyn, NY
Intimacies, Gallery 400, Chicago, IL
B-b-b-bad, Anna Kustera Gallery, New York, NY
Chromaticism, NOMA, San Francisco, CA
People Don’t Like to Read Art, Western Exhibitions, Chicago, IL
A Certain Ratio, Roots & Culture, Chicago, IL

2010    
Who’s Yr Shaman?, Johalla Projects, Chicago, IL
Troll, Envoy Enterprises, New York, NY
Engender Trouble, Iceberg, Chicago, IL
Bad at Sports: Don’t Piss on Me and Tell Me It’s Raining, Apexart, New York, NY

2009    
Bentnames, Fifty50 Gallery, Chicago, IL
Group Show, Shane Campbell Gallery, Oak Park, IL            
Homo a Go Go, Multiple Venues, Olympia, WA
Parliament of Owls, Upstairs Project Space, Glassell School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX
Hope, Linda Warren Gallery, Chicago, IL

2006    
Bentnames, Fifty50 Gallery, Chicago, IL
Group Show, Shane Campbell Gallery, Oak Park, IL            
Homo a Go Go, Multiple Venues, Olympia, WA
Parliament of Owls, Upstairs Project Space, Glassell School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX
Hope, Linda Warren Gallery, Chicago, IL

2005    
Kelly Williams, Rebecca Walz, Elijah Burgher, The Suburban, Oak Park, IL
Drawn to Drawing, Betty Rymer Gallery, Chicago, IL
Sketchbook 5, Chopin Theater, Chicago, IL

2004    
Mix Tape, Gallery 400, Chicago, IL
3 on 3, Higher Gallery, Chicago, IL
MFA Show, Gallery 2, Chicago, IL

2003    
Chicago 11, Melvin Art Gallery, Lakeland, FL

2002    
Post-Baccalaureate Show, Gallery 2, Chicago, IL

2000    
Elijah Burgher & Sandra Maffiore, A*Space, Bronxville, NY

SELECT PUBLIC COLLECTIONS

Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
Thomas J. Watson Library, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY

SELECT BIBLIOGRAPHY

2018    
Gilman, Claire. “For Opacity: Elijah Burgher, Toyin Ojih Odutola, and Nathaniel Mary Quinn,” For Opacity, The Drawing Center, New York, October 2018

2017    
Hunter, Laura Hutson. “Masturbation Meets Shamanism in Colorful Patterned Wall Pieces,” The Creators Project, May 19, 2017.

2016    
Logan, Liz. “10 Chicago Artists You Should Know,” Make It Better, February 22, 2016.
Akel, Joseph. “Signs & Wonders: Elijah Burgher’s drawings invoke magic and desire,” Secret Behavior, February 11, 2016.
Hutson, Laura. “Office Crush,” Nashville Scene, January 11, 2016.

2015    
Keenan, David. “England’s Hidden Reverse: A Secret History of the Esoteric Underground,” Strange Attractor UK, November 2015.
Waxman, Lori. “What’s new in American painting, here?” Chicago Tribune, August 13, 2015.
Sanders, Ben. “Artist Elijah Burgher has a magical time,” Windy City Times, July 14, 2015.
Hurt, Mary. “Bachelors. | A Q&A with Elijah Burgher,” Quiet Lunch, June 19, 2015.
Colucci, Emily. “Drinking the Kool-Aid with Elijah Burgher’s Bachelors,” Filthy Dreams, June 14, 2015.
Indrisek, Scott. “5 Must-See Gallery Shows,” Artinfo, June 12, 2015.
Akel, Joseph. “Picks: Elijah Burgher,” Artforum, June 12, 2015.
Mesinger, Kate. “It’s a Small Art World, After All,” Paper Mag, May 29, 2013.
Farley, Michael Anthony and Kirsch, Corinna. “This Week’s Must-See Art Events: For Goths, Hackers, and Knitters,” Art F City, May 26, 2015.
Indrisek, Scott. “What to See and Buy at the Dallas Art Fair (Elijah Burgher),” Artinfo, April 10, 2015.
Sierzputowski, Kate. “Elijah Burgher’s Portable Ritual Spaces,” Inside/Within, March 2015.

2014    
Zevitas, Steven. “15 Artists to Watch in 2015 (+3),” Huffington Post. December 16, 2014.
Bronson, AA. “AA Bronson selects abstract ceremonial painter Elijah Burgher,” Hero Magazine, October 12, 2014.
Bronson, AA. “The Autobiography of Mark Jan Krayenhoff van de Leur,” Hyperallergic, September 26, 2014.
“Art 50 2014: Chicago’s Artists’ Artists,” New City, September 18, 2014.
Gavin, Francesca. “10 of the best Chicago artists right now,” DAZED, September 17, 2014.
Burgher, Elijah. “Art Break: Elijah Burgher on Magic and Art,” New City, September 1, 2014.
“Midwest #113, curated by Staci Borris,” New American Paintings, August-September 2014.
“Whitney Biennial 2014 Part 1,” Contemporary Art Daily, May 7, 2014.
“Alms for the Birds at Cabinet,” Contemporary Art Daily, May 3, 2014.
Adams, Brooks. “Whitney Biennial 2014,” Art in America, May 1, 2014.
Molesworth, Helen. “Whitney Biennial,” Artforum, May 2014.
Schjeldahl, Peter. “Schjeldahl on the Whitney Biennial, Audio Slideshow,” The New Yorker (Reproductions), April 2014.
“Phaidon at the Whitney Biennial,” Phaidon. April 24, 2014.
Foumberg, Jason. “21st Century Sex Magick” (feature), Modern Painters, March 2014.
Hutt, John. “A Gay Ol’ Tour of the 2014 Whitney Biennial,” OUT Magazine, March 14, 2014.
Vartarian, Hrag. “Whitney Biennial 2014: Anthony Elms on the Second Floor,” Hyperallergic, March 6, 2014.
Honigman, Ana Finel. “Rackroom: As Art and Magic: An Interview with Elijah Burgher,” ArtSlant, March 2014. 
Indrisek, Scott. “This Is Not a Survey: An Incomplete Review of the Whitney Biennial,” Artinfo, March 6, 2014.
Townsend, Eileen. “All Souls: No Fate But What We Make” at Clough-Hanson,” Memphis Flyer, March 13, 2014.
Cotter, Holland. “One Last Dance in the Old Place. 2014 Whitney Biennial Has New Faces and Interesting Choices,” The New York Times, March 6, 2014.
Vogel, Wendy. “Preview: Highlights From the Whitney Biennial 2014,” Artinfo, March 5, 2014.
Foumberg, Jason. “A Visit to the Studio of Elijah Burgher,” Chicago Magazine, March 4, 2014.
Kleijn, Koen. “Review: AA Bronson, Rotterdam at de Witte de With,” Art in America, February 26, 2014.
Fishman, Elly and Foumberg, Jason. “Four Artists to Watch at the Whitney Biennial,” Chicago Magazine, February 22, 2014.
Gopnik, Blake. “Choose the Artists, Ignore the Critics,” The New York Times, February 13, 2014.
Loos, Ted. “A Biennial in the Making,” Sotheby’s Magazine, February 7, 2014.
Fitzgerald, Alex Philip. “Agenda: The 2014 Whitney Biennial (reproduction),” Mousee Magazine, Issue 42, February-March 2014.
Myers, Terry. “Elijah Burgher” (review), Art Review, January/February 2014.
PINUPS. Issue No. 18 featuring Elijah Burgher.

2013    
Foumberg, Jason. “10 Memorable Art Moments from 2013,” Chicago Magazine.
Blake, Kevin. “Transcending Immediacy: A Conversation with Elijah Burgher,” Bad at Sports, December 16, 2013.
Morris, Matt. “Elijah Burgher” (review). Artforum. November 25, 2013
Miller, Randall. “Elijah Burgher: Friendship as a Way of Life b/w I’m Seeking the Minotaur at Western Exhibitions,” Daily Serving, November 19, 2013.
Smith, Sydney. “2014 Whitney Biennial Artists Announced,” NYU Local, November 18, 2013.
Foumberg, Jason. “There are 17 Chicago Artists in the 2014 Whitney Biennial,” Chicago Magazine, November 18, 2013.
Vogel, Carol. “The 2014 Whitney Biennial Is Taking Shape,” The New York Times, November 14, 2013.
Miller, Chris. “Review: Elijah Burgher/Western Exhibitions,” New City, November 8, 2013.
Javanovich, Alex. “Scene and Heard: Bell, Book, and Candle,” Artforum, October 27, 2013.
Foumberg, Jason. “The Insiders’ Guide to Art This Fall,” Chicago Magazine, October 3, 2013.
Griffin, Jonathan. VITAMIN D2, New Perspectives in Drawing, Phaidon Publishing, 2013.

2012    
Velez, Pedro. “Eye Exam: Top Art Picks of 2012 in Chicago and the Midwest,” New City, December 18, 2012.
Eler, Alicia. “Queer Art’s Not Just About Gender – A Chicago Survey,” Hyperallergic, November 15, 2012.
Stabler, Bert. “Review: The Great Refusal: Taking On New Queer Aesthetics/SAIC Sullivan Galleries,” New City, September 18, 2012.

2011    
Cristello, Stephanie. “A Bare Sleight of Hand – Chicago’s Occult Artists,” Chicago Art Magazine, October 2011.
Mason, Rachel. “Chris Bogia and the Fire Island Artist Residency,” Art: 21, October 2011.
Holmes, Gretchen. “Eye Exam: Personal Spaces,” New City, September 2011.
Perel, Marissa. “Gimmie Shelter: Full Frontal,” Art: 21, September 2011.

2010    
Draper, Adam. “Elijah Burgher: Sigil Magick and Ritual Snapshots,” Music for Torching, January 2011.
Warfield, Liam. Secret Beach #2. “Strange Magic,” July 2010.
Jordan, Jay. “A First Hand Report from Art Chicago,” Hyperallergic, May 2010.
Foumberg, Jay. “Breakout Artists 2010: Chicago’s Next Generation of Image Makers,” New City, April 2010.
Bullock, Michael. “A Conversation with Elijah Burgher About His Queer Magic Paintings,” Butt Magazine Blog, March 2010.
Ruiz, Steve. “Elijah Burgher at Shane Campbell,” Chicago Art Magazine, January 2010.

2009    
Wallace, Brian. “Sullivan Galleries: Show Review,” No. 113, Vol. 18, Issue 2, October 2009.
Weinberg, Laura. “We Must Indeed All Hang Together,” Time Out Chicago, Issue 238.
Foumberg, Jason. “Eye Exam: Witchcraft as Metaphor,” New City, August 13, 2009.

RESIDENCIES

2018    
LAXArt, Hollywood, CA

2011    
Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture
Fire Island Artist Residency

Selected Works

Selected Works Thumbnails
Elijah Burgher Mary Amongst the Ruins (after Mantegna), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Mary Amongst the Ruins (after Mantegna), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
44 1/2 x 44 7/8 ins.
113 x 114 cm

Elijah Burgher Cybele Exits Rome (after Mantegna), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Cybele Exits Rome (after Mantegna), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
two sheets, each:
44 7/8 x 70 5/8 ins.
114 x 179.5 cm

Elijah Burgher Apollo Flaying Marsyas (after Antionio de Bellis), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Apollo Flaying Marsyas (after Antionio de Bellis), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
70 1/2 x 44 1/2 ins.
179 x 113 cm

Elijah Burgher Alphabet, 2021

Elijah Burgher
Alphabet, 2021
ink, watercolor and acrylic on paper
40 1/8 x 28 3/4 ins.
102 x 73 cm

Elijah Burgher Eden Eden Eden Eden Eden, 2018-2020

Elijah Burgher
Eden Eden Eden Eden Eden, 2018-2020
acrylic and ink on canvas drop cloth
141 3/4 x 106 1/4 ins.
360 x 270 cm

Elijah Burgher Bachelor (Gordon), 2015

Elijah Burgher
Bachelor (Gordon), 2015
colored pencil on paper
24 x 19 ins.
61 x 48.3 cm

Elijah Burgher Mary Amongst the Ruins (after Mantegna), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Mary Amongst the Ruins (after Mantegna), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
44 1/2 x 44 7/8 ins.
113 x 114 cm

Elijah Burgher Cybele Exits Rome (after Mantegna), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Cybele Exits Rome (after Mantegna), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
two sheets, each:
44 7/8 x 70 5/8 ins.
114 x 179.5 cm

Elijah Burgher Apollo Flaying Marsyas (after Antionio de Bellis), 2021

Elijah Burgher
Apollo Flaying Marsyas (after Antionio de Bellis), 2021
colored pencil and watercolor on paper
70 1/2 x 44 1/2 ins.
179 x 113 cm

Elijah Burgher Alphabet, 2021

Elijah Burgher
Alphabet, 2021
ink, watercolor and acrylic on paper
40 1/8 x 28 3/4 ins.
102 x 73 cm

Elijah Burgher Eden Eden Eden Eden Eden, 2018-2020

Elijah Burgher
Eden Eden Eden Eden Eden, 2018-2020
acrylic and ink on canvas drop cloth
141 3/4 x 106 1/4 ins.
360 x 270 cm

Elijah Burgher Bachelor (Gordon), 2015

Elijah Burgher
Bachelor (Gordon), 2015
colored pencil on paper
24 x 19 ins.
61 x 48.3 cm

Videos

Elijah Burgher, Queen of the Forest, P·P·O·W, New York, November 19 - December 22, 2021