Clare Rojas

Installation Views

b. 1976 Columbus, Ohio | Lives and works in San Francisco

For Clare Rojas (b. 1976, USA), storytelling man-ifests in many different ways: sometimes visually, as a painting, drawing, or sculpture; or other times musically, as a song. Yet one similarity Rojas has noticed between these various forms of expression has to do with reduction. Her songwriting pares down the essence of a story to something that can be conveyed in minutes, just as the essence of form and line in her abstract visual compo-sitions is reduced to an examination of the tension of balance.


However, though theoretically reductive, Rojas’ highly individualized visual language also represents an escalation. Each composition proliferates from a personal totemic form un-rooted to figurative meaning, but evocative of the shape of a drop of water or a mountain. The form has evolved over time, from an abstract shape that Rojas instinctively drew to something concrete she began noticing in her everyday visual environment. Says Rojas, “The more I drew it, and meditated on the shape, the more I saw it everywhere I looked. I found it in the figure, in nature, in water, in land, in animals.”


In her most recent exhibition, Egret, at Kavi Gupta in Chicago, Rojas expanded her relationship with this form. She mobilized it as both a metaphysical anchor and an aesthetic start-ing point for more than 100 new abstract works, including one hundred 8×10-inch drawings, nine new large-scale oil paint-ings, and several new sculptural works. This visually stunning and conceptually rigorous body of work continues Rojas’ ongoing ex-amination of the human will towards story, an instinct marked by our search for narrative relationships with images, even when they are essentially abstract.


Rojas earned her BFA from the Rhode Island School of Design, and her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Recent projects include a site-specific commission for the Art in Embassies Program in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico (2018), a two-person exhibi-tion with Barry McGee at the Watari Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2017), and a solo exhibition at the Alice Gallery in Brussels, Belgium (2016). Other recent solo exhibitions include New Works at Anglim Gilbert San Francisco; self-titled shows at Vladmir Restoin Roitfeld, New York and Galleri Nicolai Wallner, Co-penhagen; Pith at Prism, Los Angeles; and We They at the Museum of Craft and Folk Art, San Francisco. Rojas’ work has been reviewed in such publications as the Huffing-ton Post, Artforum International Magazine, Art in America, Interview Magazine, The New York Times, and Art Review.

Solo Exhibitions


Clare Rojas: Shifted Horizons, SOCO Gallery, Charlotte


Egret, Kavi Gupta | Elizabeth St., Chicago, IL


Orphaned wells, SOCO Gallery, Charlotte, NC

The inexhaustible middle, Alice Gallery, Brussels, Belgium

Clare Rojas: New Work, Anglim Gilbert Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Everyone Has Those Spaces, Kavi Gupta | Elizabeth St., Chicago, IL
Caerulea, Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA

Clare Rojas, Vladmir Restoin Roitfeld, New York, NY
Clare Rojas, Galleri Nicolai Wallner, Copenhagen, Denmark

Spaces in Between, Kavi Gupta | Washington Blvd., Chicago, IL
Pith, Prism, Los Angeles, CA

We They, We They, IKON Gallery, Birmingham, UK
Through the Woods, Pinnacle Gallery ,Savannah College of Art And Design, Savannah, GA
We They, We They, Museum of Craft and Folk Art, San Francisco, CA

Believe Me, Kavi Gupta Gallery | Washington Blvd., Chicago, IL

Forget Me Not, Museum Het Domein, The Netherlands
Sympathetic Magic, Laboratorio 987, in the Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, Spain
Kitty Buck, Lizabeth Oliveiria Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
P.S. Hurray!, Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA
Sympathetic Magic, Stuart Shave/Modern Art, London, England
Clare Rojas: Hope Springs Eternal, The Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA

Moody Loner, Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA
Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita State University, Wichita, KS
Clare Rojas, Nicolai Wallner Galeri, Copenhagen, Denmark

Hah! Ha, ha, ha!, Kavi Gupta Gallery, Chicago, IL
Clare Rojas, Modern Art, London
Sub-Urban: Clare Rojas, Knoxville Museum of Art, TN

Table Turner, Deitch Projects, New York, NY

Doing My Day, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, IL
Maybelle Crick, Lizabeth Oliveria, San Francisco, CA
Walk Like Man, New Image Art, Los Angeles, CA

Selected Group Exhibitions


Way Bay, University of California, Berkeley Art Museum & Pacific Film Archive, Berkeley, CA

DNA of Painting, Anglim Gilbert Gallery, Minnesota Street Projects, San Francisco, CA

The House Imaginary, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose


Independent New York – 2017, Fleisher/Ollman, Philadelphia

Jump, Galleri Nicolai Wallner, Copenhagen, Denmark


House or Home: Architectural Form in the Print, Paulson Fontaine Press, Berkeley

New Geometries, Fleisher/Ollman, Philadelphia

Art Alliance: The Provocateurs, curated by Shepard Fairey, Block Thirty Seven, Chicago, IL
Initial Public Offering: New Works from SJMA’s Permanent Collection, San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, CA
Folklore, Pennsylvania College of Art & Design, Lancaster, PA

10 Revolutions Around the Sun, Headland Center for the Arts, Sausalito, CA


Go Figure, Smart Museum of Art, University of Chicago, Chicago, IL

Orde di segnatori, Antonio Colombo Arte Contemporanea, Milan
Paper!Awesome, Baer Ridgway Exhibitions, San Francisco, CA
2TheWall, New Image Art Gallery, West Hollywood, CA

Constellations: Paintings from the MCA Collection, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (MCA), Chicago, IL
Instruments, SolwayJones, Los Angeles, CA
American Realities, New Image Art Gallery, West Hollywood, CA

Prospect.1 New Orleans, Prospect New Orleans, New Orleans, LA
Anniversary Exhibition, Galleri Nicolai Wallner, Copenhagen
The Wizard of Oz, CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco, CA
Journey to the End of the Night, Green On Red Gallery, Dublin
Eureka!, ICA, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, San Jose, CA
Harry Smith Anthology Remixed, Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA), Glasgow, Scotland
Untitled(Waves), Primo Marella Gallery Beijing, Beijing
The Big Sad: Barry McGee & Clare Rojas, Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA
Size Matters: XS, Recent Small-Scale Painting – Knoxville Museum of Art (KMA), Knoxville, TN

Existencias, Musac, Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Castilla y León, Léon
Some kind of Portrait, Marc Selwyn Fine Art, Los Angeles, CA
Size Matters: XS, Recent Small-Scale Paintings, HVCCA, Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Peekskill, NY
Joy Feasley & Clare Rojas: Pow-Wows or The Long Lost Friend, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA
Silly Adults, Galleri Nicolai Wallner, Copenhagen
Very Abstract and Hyper Figurative, Thomas Dane Gallery, London
Panic Room, Works from The Dakis Joannou Collection, Deste Foundation, Centre for Contemporary Art, Athens
In The Fullness of Time: The Luggage Store 20 Year Anniversary Exhibition, San Francisco, CA

Jen Liu + Bjørn Melhus + Clare Rojas, Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Drawing is a Fine Art, Museum of Fine Arts, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL
Girl on Guy, Columbia College of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Men, curated by Ellen Altfest, I-20, New York, NY
Jen Liu, Bjorn Melhus and Clare Rojas, Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

Life and Limb, curated by David Humphrey, Feigen Contemporary, New York, NY
In Search of a Continuous Present, International Biennale of Contemporary Art, National Gallery in Prague, curated by Lynne Warren
Eureka Fellowship Award Exhibition, Berkley Art Museum, CA
Art Part II: Dazzle Dogs, Clare Rojas, Erin Rosenthal and Andrew Jeffrey Wright, Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery, Los Angeles
Beautiful Losers, Orange County Museum of Art, Orange County, curated by Christian Strike and Aaron Rose, CA

Beautiful Losers, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, curated by Aaron Rose and Christian Strike, San Francisco, CA
Beautiful Losers, Contemporary Arts Center, curated by Aaron Rose and Christian Strike, Cincinnati, OH
Change of Address, Lizabeth Oliveria Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Your Heart is No Match For My Love, The Soap Factory, Minneapolis, MN
It’s a Wonderful Life, Spaces Gallery, Cleveland, OH
Altoids Collection 2003, traveling exhibition
East of the Sun and West of the Moon, White Columns, NY

Pocket Atlas, Yerba Buena Center For the Arts, San Francisco, CA
Outerspace Hillbilly, Luggage Store, San Francisco, CA May-June

Scratch Off the Serial, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA

Widely Unknown, Deitch Projects Wooster Street Space, New York, NY (11/01)
East Meets West, Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia, PA

Selected Two Person Shows


Big Sky Little Moon, Clare Rojas | Barry McGee, Watari Museum, Tokyo, Japan


Retrospective, Gallery Paule Anglim, San Francisco, CA


Clare Rojas | Barry McGee, Galleria Alessandra Bonomo, Rome, Italy


The Big Sad: Barry McGee & Clare Rojas, Riverside Art Museum, Riverside, CA


Joy Feasley & Clare Rojas: Pow-wows or The Long Lost Friend, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA






Kavi Gupta and Soho House present Art House: Clare Rojas, a book launch of Rojas’s new book as well as a musical performance by the artist’s musical alter-ego, Peggy Honeywell. The event will take place in The Music Room of Soho House Chicago in advance of her solo show “Egret” opening the following night at the Kavi Gupta | Elizabeth Street location.
Friday, May 18
The Music Room at Soho House Chicago
7:30-9 pm
Clare Rojas — Clare Rojas: Everything’s Connected

Clare Rojas speaks on about her work and process.

Courtesy of the Smart Museum at the University of Chicago