Bio

Cristall Harper’s paintings are connected through a stylized approach to realistic abstraction. One critic described her personal version of abstraction as “beautifully rooted in reality,” while Southwest Art wrote: “No matter the subject, the joy of painting for Harper is all about seeing shapes and colors on an abstract level and then interpreting them in her brush strokes.” Her preferred painting method is alla prima, and her body of work is at once joyful and tranquil—a study of light and shadow, color and form, that illustrates the artist’s intimate understanding of her subject matter.

 

Harper’s love for art began at an early age, filling her mental reference library with memories of light and color. These early images include a beach at sunset, the fading light sparkling off the water beneath a fiery orange sky. And she often returns to her memory of a monumental lily painting in her childhood home, studying how the artist, using only paint, brought life to the flower. Perhaps most influential was the stained glass window of irises that hung in her father’s office; the translucent glass, with its bright colors and faceted shapes, still impacts her art today.

 

Born in Texas and raised in Missouri, Harper received a bachelor of fine arts in painting from Utah’s Brigham Young University in 2002. After several years of selling her work through boutiques and frame shops—and even on eBay—she made the decision in 2007 to focus on her art full-time. A tulip festival in 2009 inspired a wide body of floral work, which landed her first show at a gallery in Provo, Utah. When she began painting her yellow lab, Buttercup, the resulting work caught the eye of other galleries, including Astoria Fine Art in Jackson, Wyoming, where she was honored with her first solo show in 2018. In 2016, she was selected as the featured artist for the Art & Soup Charity Event in Salt Lake City, a show that annually attracts dozens of artists and thousands of patrons. Harper is a member of Oil Painters of America and American Women Artists. Her work has been featured in American Art Collector, Southwest Art, and the Salt Lake Tribune. She paints from her studio in American Fork, Utah, where she lives with her husband, a few rascally chickens, and her new yellow lab, Cricket. Harper is represented by Astoria Fine Art in Jackson, Wyoming; Gallery 330 in Fredericksburg, Texas; and Gallery MAR Carmel in Carmel, California.

 

 

Selected Shows, Awards & Publications

 

2020

Solo Show, Astoria Fine Art, Jackson, WY

2019

Arts & Living Section Cover Story, Salt Lake Tribune, Sunday, November 17, 2019 issue, Salt Lake City, UT

Second Place Award, Park City Nursery Plein Air Paint Out, Park City, UT

About Locals, Gallery MAR, Park City, UT

95th Annual Spring Salon, Springville Museum of Art, Springville, UT

An Unhurried Path, Southwest Art Magazine, May 2019 issue, 6-page feature

2018

New Work at the Jackson Hole Fall Arts Festival, Astoria Fine Art, Jackson, WY

Affirmations, Gallery MAR, Park City, UT

“Summer Swim” published on the back cover of American Art Collector, July 2018 issue

Solo Show, Astoria Fine Art, Jackson, WY

30th Annual Art & Soup Celebration, Salt Palace, Salt Lake City, UT

2017

Familiarity, Gallery MAR, Park City, UT

Seasons Art Salon, Ashton Gardens,  Lehi, UT

29th Annual Art & Soup Celebration, Salt Palace, Salt Lake City, UT

The Great Gala, St. Mark’s School, Salt Lake City, UT