Elizabeth Sher


Traditional media and digital technologies have merged creating opportunities to chart new realms of infinite combinations for Elizabeth Sher.   Sher combines digital photographs, video stills and scanned hand made and found images with traditional art making media (paint, collage, drawing) to explore and expand the boundaries of this new landscape infused with a sense of place.  Sher’s work in film informs the narratives inherent in the work.  She hopes that each viewer will bring his or her own experience to her pieces – it is not important to her that they know her personal starting point – as that is only the beginning of her aesthetic and contextual exploration.  The piece waits to be completed by the viewer’s response.

Elizabeth Sher is an artist and filmmaker working in the Bay Area of California where she is owner of I.V. Studios: Art and Film for the 21st Century.  She is Professor Emeritus of Art at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco and Oakland, CA where she taught Painting and Media Arts for more than 3 decades.

Her drawings, prints, paintings and artist books have been exhibited at many university art museums and is included in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Art, The Fine Arts Museum of California, the San Jose Museums of Art, the Oakland Museum of Art, The Carnegie Mellon University Hunt Collection and the United States Embassy Collection.   Sher has had solo exhibitions in the San Francisco Bay Area and nationally.

Sher’s documentary PENNY © 2014 about renowned criminal defense attorney and art collector Penny Cooper received the 2012 Roy Dean Grant for Film and a 2014 Fleishhacker Small Film Grant.  PENNY: Champion of the Marginalized is currently airing nationally on public televison where it premiered in March 2017 for Women’s Month.The film was honored in 9 film festivals winning awards in 4 including Audience Favorite Documentary at Mill Valley Film Festival and Best Documentary in Intendence Film Festival, Denver, CO. Film grants include National Endowment for the Arts, the American Film Institute, Western Regional Media Arts Fellowship Fund, The Zellerbach Family Fund. Film festivals include TBerlin Short Film Festival, Germany; Edinburgh Film Festival, Scotland; San Francisco International Film Festival; New York Independent Film Festival.


Selected Recent Exhibitions

2016-17 Nothing Extraneous, Vessel Gallery, Oakland, CA Artist Talk

2016 Arising Project, Reykjavik Museum, Iceland

2016 Art is a Living Thing, Aratoi Museum, Masterton, New Zealand. Jury selection

2016 Crossing the Digital Divide, solo exhibition Los Medanos College, CA Cat.

2015 Ten Years of Artist Books curated by Donna Seager, Brooklyn Central Library,NY Cat.

2015 CODEX V, International Book Exhibition, Craneway Pavillion, Richmond, CA

2015 Passages, Verum Ultimum Galery, Portland, OR. Jury Selection

2015 Transitions, Marin Community Foundation, Novato, CA. Jury Selection

2014 Studi D’arte Nel Castelio, Aragonese, Castle, BAU Institute, Otranto, Italy, Fellow

2014 2014 Rauchenberg:  Collecting and Connecting, Basher Museum of Art, Duke University, North Carolina  online catalog

2014 Art of the Digital, San Francisco State University Gallery, image selected for card

2014 Bibliophoria, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, jury selection

2013 Art in a Time of Climatological Catastrophes, WEAD, China Brotsky Art Gallery, SF, CA juried by Suzann Boettger 

2013 Big is Beautiful, Art Contemporary Marin, Bay Model, Sausalito, CA,

2013 BELLA BELLA film screening, part of Bella Feldman 50 year retrospective, RAC, Richmond, CA panel moderated by DeWitt Cheng

2013 New Media Combinations, Berkeley Art Center, CA Cat., panel

2013 Evolutionary Processes, solo exhibition, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, CA. Cat.,lecture

2013 Codex IV International Book Fair, Berkeley, CA

2013 The Residents, Gatewood Gallery, UNC Greensboro, NC

2012 Alternative, The LightRoom, Berkeley, CA

2012 Convergence/Divergence, Los Medanos College, CA, jury selection

2012 Miniature Book Society Asheville Book Works, North Carolina, and traveling exhibition Cat.

2012 Digital Mixed Media, Petaluma Arts Center, CA

2012 In|Print, The Warehouse Gallery, Oakland, CA

2012 Beyond Landscape, The Marin Community Foundation, Novato, CA, jury selection

2012 ArtPadSF, showing with Toumey Tourell at the Phoenix Hotel, SF, CA

2012 Collect, Berkeley Art Center, Berkeley, CA

2006 – 2012 The Art of the Book, Seager Gray Gallery, San Rafael, CA cat.

2012 Blue, Berkeley Art Center, CA, jury selection

2011 5 x 5 Invitational, Westmont Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CA

2011 Shoes, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, Sebastopol, CA, jury selection

2011 Miniature Book Society Traveling Exhibit, Juried, Perm. Collection, Lilly Library, Ind. Univ., Cat.

2011 San Francisco Center for the Book 15th Anniversary Exhibition, Austin/Burke Gallery, SF, jury selection

2011 Keeping an Eye on Surveillance, Performance Art Institute, SF, CA

2011 Sign Language, Mythos Fine Art and Artifacts, Berkeley, CA, lec.

2011 Bookworks: Triennial San Francisco Center for Book Arts, Skylight Gallery, SF Main Library, CA

2011 Bibliophoria II, Sebastopol, CA, juried

2011 Bookworks, Skylight Gallery, San Francisco, CA

2011 In Material, 3-person show Quicksilver Mine Co. Gallery, Forestville, CA Cat.

2011 Urban/Urbane, Susan Hensell Gallery, Minneapolis, MN, Jury Selection

2011 International Women’s Day 100th Anniversary Exhibition, 2nd City Council Gallery, Long Beach, CA, Jury Selection

2011 Of Water -16 Bay area Painters, Bay Model, Sausalito, CA, Jury Selection

2010 Can Serrat, Barcelona, Spain

2010 Show and Bestow – the Ruth Hughes Collection of Artists’ Books, The Free Library of Philadelphia, PA and Oberlin College, OH Cat

2010 Process & Place, Berkeley Art Center Co-Curator, Panel, Cat.

2010 Endangered Pollinators, Bioneers Conference, CA

2011-10-9-8-7-6 The Art of the Book, Donna Seager Gallery, San Rafael, CA

2009 City of Berkeley Public Art Program Civic Center Exhibition

2009 Printing on the Cutting Edge, Alameda Museum, Jury Selection

2009 International Codex Book Fair, University of California, Berkeley

2008 Tarrant County College, Arlington, TX (Ft. Worth) Solo Exhibition, Artist in Residence 2008

2008 Banned & Recovered – Artists Respond to Censorship, African American Museum & Library of Oakland   & San Francisco Center for Book Arts

2008 Digital Visions, Artlink, Ft. Wayne, IN Jury Prize

2008 Secrets & Lies, Sandy Gallery, Portland, OR Jury Prize, Cat.

2008 The Art of the Book, Donna Seager Gallery, San Rafael, CA cat

2008 Toomey-Tourell Fine Arts 10th Anniversary Exhibition, San Francisco, CA

2007 Lightboxes & Artist Books, Haggerty Gallery, U. of Dallas, TX Solo Exhibition, lecture

2007 Contemporary Art Gallery, Southeastern Louisiana University Cat.

2007 Cutting Edge Books, University Art Gallery, Cal State East Bay, Hayward, CA

2007 Art Without Walls, New York, NY 2007 Artist Books


Selected Honors & Awards
2014 Fellow, BAU Institute, Otranto, Italy

2014 Fleishakker Grant for Film

2013 2 artist books included in 500 Handmade Books Vol 2, Lark Publishers, juried by Julie Chen

2012 Roy Dean Film Grant Winner

2012 & 2-16 Selected Artist Gullkistan Residency for Creative People, Iceland

2011 Awarded Emeritus Status, California College of the Arts

2011 Juror, The Art of the Line, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, CA

2010 Artist Stipend Winner Residency, Can Serrat, Barcelona, Spain
2010 Travel Grant, California College of the Arts – New Pacific Studios, New Zealand
2009 Berkeley City Public Art Honoree
2008 Jury Prize Sandy Gallery, Portland, OR
2008 Digital Visions, Ft. Wayne, IN Jury Prize
2008 Residency New Pacific Studio, New Zealand
2008 Faculty Development Grant, California College of the Arts

Selected Permanent Collections

Achenbach Foundation for Graphic Arts, Fine Arts Museums, San Francisco, CA

The Austin Museum of Art, TX

De Anza College, Santa Clara, CA

The Hechinger Collection, Washington, DC

The Hunt Collection for Botanical Documentation, Carnegie-Mellon University,

The Oakland Museum of California

Sierra Nevada Museum of Art, NV

The Smith College Museum of Art, Northampton, MA

United States Information Agency Embassy Collection, State Department, Wash., DC

and many private collections nationwide



Full CV upon request. More information at www.ivstudios.com and www.pennythedocumentary.com


Rituals of Remembrance Movie (in progress)