Elizabeth McDonald

contemporary artist


Smoke like pink cotton

Smoke like pink cotton

Artist Statement

At the core of my work is ritual. From protocols to séances, whether pragmatic or symbolic, rituals are a way of sequencing our experience and constructing power. They address anxiety directly or indirectly to protect from that which is beyond one’s control.


Elizabeth McDonald was born and raised in Texas. She earned a BFA at the University of North Texas and an MFA at the Glasgow School of Art. In 2010 she was a finalist for five prizes: shortlisted for the John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize, Liverpool; a finalist for the Hunting Art Prize, Houston (again in 2012); also exhibiting at the Salon Art Prize, Matt Roberts Arts, London; earning second place at the Celeste Art Prize in New York; and winning the BP Portrait’s Young Artist Award at the National Portrait Gallery in London. Her work has been presented in numerous publications including 500 Portraits published by the National Portrait Gallery in London and The Catlin Guide released at the 2012 London Art Fair. She most recently exhibited as part of Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art 2014, and in Austin Texas with a solo shows at Pump Project and GrayDUCK.

Selected CV


MFA 2011 Glasgow School of Art

BFA 2008 University of North Texas


Named one of the top UK Art Graduates of 2011 by the Catlin Guide 2012

Shortlisted for the John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize, Liverpool in 2010 (selected by Gary Hume, Goshka Macuga, Ged Quinn, Sir Norman Rosenthal, and Alison Watt)

Won the Young Artist Award at the BP Portrait Competition 2010, National Portrait Gallery, London

Finalist in the Celeste Art Prize, New York 2010

Finalist for the Hunting Art Prize, Houston, 2010, 2012, 2015


Selected Exhibitions

2015- I Only Know Plenty, grayDUCK gallery, Austin, Texas (solo)

2014 – Contamination | Pollination, Pump Project, Austin, Texas (solo)

2014 – Sehnsucht, Chalet Gallery, Glasgow (commissioned for Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art)

2013 – New British 2013, Lloyds Club, London

2013 – Defcon, Embassy Gallery, Edinburgh

2012 – A Fresh Approach, Ruiz-Healy Gallery, San Antonio, Texas

2012 – Hunger and Desire, 107 Studios, San Antonio, Texas (two person show)

2012 – San Antonio Painters, Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum, San Antonio, Texas

2011 – Assembly: Elizabeth McDonald, Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff (solo)

2011 – Chalet Prize, Chalet Gallery, Glasgow

2011 – Split, Sommer & Kohl Gallery, Berlin (MFA exhibition)

2011 – MFA Degree Show, Gluefactory, Glasgow

2011 – Chalet Artists, Collins Gallery, Glasgow

2010 – Celeste Art Prize Exhibition, Invisible Dog Gallery, New York

2010 – Salon Art Prize, Matt Roberts Art, London

2010 – John Moores Contemporary Painting Prize Exhibition, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool

2010 – BP Portrait Award Exhibition, National Portrait Gallery, London

(toured to Lincoln, Aberdeen, and Cardiff)

2010 – Expo, 500x Gallery, Dallas, Texas

2010 – The Chalet Invitational, Chalet Gallery, Glasgow (Glasgow International Festival of Visual Art)

Recent Work

New Posts



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