Dan Addington

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Song of Wing and Refuge, 2007 Encaustic, Oil, Tar, Collage, On Panel 72x48x6 © Dan Addington, 2007
The Age of Winds, 2010 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood 36x32 © Dan Addington
Brushed by Stillness, 2010 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric On Wood 48x36 © Dan Addington
Perilous Majesty, 2010 36x36 © Dan Addington
Ancient Arrival, 2010 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood 38x28 © Dan Addington
Encounter, 2010 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood 24x24 © Dan Addington
Antwerp, 2009 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood 36x36 © Dan Addington
Bracing for Solace, 2009 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood Construction 54x42x5 © Dan Addington
In Memory of Higher Thought, 2009 Oil, Wax, Tar, Fabric, On Wood 24x24 © Dan Addington
Higher Thought
Quick Facts
Denver CO
Birth year
Lives in
Works in
Illinois State University, M.F.A
Arkansas State University, M.A.
Northwestern College, B.A.
Representing galleries
Nashville, Cosmopolitan Art Gallery, Naples, Addington Gallery, Rymer Gallery
encaustic, curator, mixed-media, figurative, gallery

    Dan Addington lives and works in Chicago, and his work has been exhibited in numerous group and solo exhibitions across the US. He has been represented by The Rymer Gallery in Nashville, Aliya|Linstrum Gallery in Atlanta, Lowe Gallery in Atlanta, Malton Gallery in Cincinnati, and Oglvie/Pertl in Chicago.  Addington is the owner and director of Addington Gallery in Chicago. His work can be found in numerous public and private collections across the US.

    Addington is known for his work with wax and tar, and often lectures on encaustic painting, an ancient technique that involves molten beeswax.

    Addington's paintings often include combinations of anatomical imagery, archaic symbolism, and spiritual iconography. The works are created using a variety of materials that emphasize the paintings as visceral objects with an evocative physical presence. These materials are meant to recall and engage the physical body, and with the accompanying image, evoke a meditational response from the viewer. Through a mixed use of painterly languages, these works explore the nature of mortality, express a sense of loss, and address mankind's desire to locate spiritual meaning.

    Artist Statement:

    In the past few years, travels in Europe and Ireland have had a profound visual effect on my work. Upon returning from that first trip, I began a series of paintings initially inspired by events and imagery experienced there. These influences were coupled with my own interest in medieval and gothic forms, historical European religious subject matter, and European history. With this new body of paintings I began to aggressively explore the use of alternative, often organic materials like wax, tar, wood, and fabric to achieve a more elemental and tactile connection with the work. The exploration of ideas about memory, history, and the passage of time have become an important part of this process.

    My paintings often include combinations of anatomical imagery, memorial sculpture, historical symbolism, and religious iconography.  The works are created using deep supports, like boxes, which stand out from the wall and assert themselves in the viewer's space. In many cases, the physical qualities of the work are meant to suggest the physical weightiness associated with monuments and memorial sculpture.

    Collaged materials, including heavy fabrics and printed matter, contribute to the initial surface of the work. After this weathered, heavily worked, abstract surface is established, it is sealed in a layer of beeswax, and the more figurative elements of the imagery are rendered in tar and varnish. The organic qualities of the wood, wax, and tar communicate a feeling of timelessness.  I believe that the processes of building, weathering, eroding and layering are important to the work's identity -- it creates a history that can be traced, investigated, and experienced by the viewer. The materials and processes used emphasize the paintings as visceral objects with a physical presence that recalls and engages the viewer's physical body.


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