CRAig M. Cully

Craig Cully began his career studying painting and drawing at Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. After a brief post-graduate summer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago he completed his MFA degree in Studio Art at the University of Arizona. Having grown up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, some of Cully's earliest influences come from the area’s long-standing tradition of realist painters. His work has been featured in exhibitions throughout the United States and is part of permanent collections in several museums including the Tucson Museum of Art, the University of Arizona Museum of Art, the Boise Museum of Art, and the Museum at Texas Tech University.





My approach to painting derives from a great appreciation for the sensuous nature of the medium and an understanding of the communicative possibilities inherent in its many manifestations. As a representational painter it is not my intention to produce an exact mimesis of my subject, but rather to manifest an underlying content that resonates with my audience. I consider my work to be spaces of crisis. Through the use of a wide range of technical and formal approaches, along with a variety of subject matter, my work evokes the tension created by the realization of unmet expectations and the potential for personal restitution.

Upon visiting my studio a fellow artist once inquired if I ever felt schizophrenic in my studio practice. She was wondering if in my attempt to work concurrently on several different bodies of work, each with its own distinct stylistic approach, I had lost my sense of identity as an artist. I answered, smugly, “Isn’t that the point?” My current body of work does exactly that. In an attempt to mine the schism caused by the intersection of my personal experiences and beliefs with that of our social and cultural ideals and expectations, this work applies a profusion of painterly modalities along with a range of subject matter to integrate a variety of disparate pictorial solutions. This body of work operates as a rehearsal for and revisitation of (my) success at failure as I look both backwards and forwards at my life through the lens of middle age. Each painting, through both image and form, strives to realize a kind of telos which will bring about an absolute resolution between the disparate formal elements and the individual egos of the protagonists—each having their own intentions, needs and desires. While the heterogeneous appearance of these paintings speaks of an incongruous approach to rectifying personal conflicts, their ability to harmonize disparate forces expresses the possibility of achieving balance— albeit complex and tentative.




The University of Arizona 1996 — 1999,  Tucson AZ, MFA painting

School of the Art Institute of Chicago 1995, Chicago IL, painting concentration

Tyler School of Art, Temple University 1989 — 1993, Elkins Park PA, BFA painting


Solo exhibitions

Projects Gallery, “Ardent Proponents of Iridescence”, Philadelphia PA 2013

Gallerie Urbane, “Craig Cully New Work”, Dallas TX 2010

Stewart Gallery, “Get Out of Jail Free”, Boise ID 2010

Washington State University Gallery, “Mingle”, Pullman WA 2009

Klaudia Marr Gallery, Solo Exhibition, Santa Fe NM (tri-fold catalogue) 2009

Dinnerware Contemporary Art Gallery, “Portraits and Perversions”, Tucson AZ 2004

Western Texas College, “(A)pathetic”, Snyder TX 2001

Sleeth Gallery of Wesleyan University, “Awkward Intimacies”, Buckhannon WV 2000


Invited exhibitions

Cumberland Gallery, TBA, Nashville TN 2013

Etherton Gallery ,“Palm Springs Artfair”, Palm Desert CA 2013

Weigel House, “5 in 1”, Knoxville TN 2012

Etherton Gallery, “RED”, Tucson AZ 2012

Hardee Center for the Arts, “Constructed Identities and Staged Narratives”, (Two-Person) NFCC, Madison FL 2012

Gallerie Urbane, “Houston Art Fair”, Houston TX 2012

Sue Greenwood Fine Art, “American Icons”, Laguna Beach CA 2011/12

E therton Gallery, “Don’t Look Now”, (Three Person) Tucson AZ 2011

Projects Gallery, “Wynwood Art Fair”, Miami FL, “ Aqua Art Fair”, Miami FL, “Art Palm Beach”, Palm Beach FL, “Toronto International Art Fair”, Toronto Canada, “Red Dot” & “Miami International Art Fair”, Miami FL 2009/10/11/12/13

Museum of Texas Tech University, “Check Up 1”, Lubbock TX (catalogue) 2011

Metro Gallery, “Reconnection/Recollection” (co-curated Craig Cully/ Kelly Leslie), Reno NV 2011

Projects Gallery, “Selection of Gallery Artists”, Philadelphia PA 2011

Projects Gallery, “Little Treasures Big Rewards”, Philadelphia PA 2011

Cumberland Gallery,“Small Packages” , Nashville TN 2009/10/11

Preston Contemporary Art Center, “Exhibition 1”, Mesilla NM (catalogue) 2011

Corner House Gallery, “Urbane Stages”, Cedar Rapids IA 2010

N oel-Baza Gallery, “Bare Naked and Nude”, San Diego CA 2010

Park Fine Art Gallery, Gallery Edel and Changwon National University Art Museum, “Park Fine Art International Invitational”,  Albuquerque NM, Japan and South Korea (catalogue) 2010

Stewart Gallery, “L.A. Art Fair”, Los Angeles CA 2010/09

Cumberland Gallery,“The Food Show” , Nashville TN 2010

B oise Art Museum, “Kids Stuff”, Boise ID 2009

Projects Gallery, “Bridge Art Fair”, New York NY 2009

U of A Student Union Art Gallery, “Paris-Tucson Exchange Exhibition”, (a group exhibition featuring selected artists from Paris and Tucson) Tucson AZ 2009

V isual Arts Graduate Research Laboratory —The University of Arizona, “Continuum”, Tucson AZ (Invitational exhibition featuring current and past faculty, alumni, and artists from Tucson galleries) 2009

NMSU Art Gallery, “Faculty Art Exhibition”, Las Cruces NM 2009

The Stewart Gallery, “Small Wonders “, Boise ID 2008

The Space Gallery, Two-Person Exhibition, New Richmond WI 2008

Klaudia Marr Gallery, “2008/07 Realism Invitational,” Santa Fe NM 2008/07

Platform Gallery , “Relatively Funny”, Tucson AZ 2007

Furlong Gallery, Faculty Exhibition ‘07, Menomonie WI 2007

Tucson Museum of Art, “An Eclectic Eye”, Tucson AZ (catalogue) 2007

Platform Gallery, “New Works”, Tucson AZ 2006

Phoenix Museum of Art, “Contemporary Forum Grant Winners”, Phoenix AZ 2006

Etherton/Temple Gallery, “Bonfire of the Vanitas”, Tucson AZ 2006

Platform Gallery, “Behind Our Eyes”, Tucson AZ 2005

Liz Hernandez Gallery, “Out of Chaos”, Tucson AZ 2005

Ehterton/Temple Gallery, “Wherefore Art Thou?”, Tucson AZ 2005

Southern Arizona Aids Foundation, Festival of Life, “Paper Prayers”, Tucson AZ 2004/2005

Liz Hernandez Gallery, “Earth, Wind, and Faces”, Tucson AZ 2004

Tucson Museum of Art, “What’s Love Got To Do With It?”, Tucson AZ 2004

MOCA, “Drawn”, Tucson AZ 2004

Monorchid Studios, “Respite”, Phoenix AZ 2004

MOCA, Hazmat Gallery, “Have and Hold”, Tucson AZ 2002

Northern Arizona University, “Surface”, Flagstaff AZ 2002

Landmark Gallery, Texas Tech University, “Faculty Show”, Lubbock TX 2000

MOCA, Hazmat Gallery, “New! with anti-oxidants”, Tucson AZ 2000

Gallery on the Green, “Small Works Invitational”, Canton CT 1999

Joseloff Gallery, Hartford Art School, “Annual Faculty Show”, W. Hartford CT 1999

Joseph Gross Gallery, “MFA Thesis Show”, Tucson AZ 1999

The Select Gallery, “Hands In...”, Sedona AZ 1998


Juried exhibitions

T ucson Museum of Art, “Arizona Biennial”, Tucson AZ 2011

D elta Center for the Arts, LH Horton Jr. Gallery, “2D3D Figurative Works”, San Joaquin Delta College, Stockton CA 2011

L SU Student Union Art Gallery , “20”x 20”x 20”: A National Compact Competition and Exhibition”, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge LA 2011

Sheppard Fine Arts Gallery, “Myself ”, University of Nevada, Reno NV (catalogue) 2011

Manifest Gallery, “International Painting Annual I”, Exhibition in Print (catalogue) 2010

E l Paso Museum of Art, “Artists on Art”, El Paso TX 2010

Tubac Center for the Arts, “Little Treasures”, Tubac AZ 2009

T he Dalton Gallery, Agnes Scott College, “All Small Redux”, Decatur GA (Jurors: Lisa Alembik, The Dalton Gallery Director, Rachael Baladnza, Managing Director of the Creative Workshop of the Memorial Art Gallery, Rochester NY, Richard Gess, writer, artist, curator, Eyedrum Gallery, GA) 2009

Projects Gallery, “Guilty Pleasures”, Philadelphia PA (Juror: Helen Meyrick, Projects Gallery Director) 2009

Northern Kentucky University Main Gallery, “I Love You Love Me”, Highland Hiegths KY 2007

Tucson Museum of Art, Arizona Biennial ‘07, Tucson AZ 2007

Art Link Contemporary Art Gallery, “Lots of Little Art”, Fort Wayne IN 2003

Leslie Powell Gallery, University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, Chickasha OK (purchase award) 2001

Washington Art Association, “Young Talent”, Washington Depot CT 2000

Apparatus Gallery, “Multi-Cultural Religious”, Tucson AZ 1998

Kellogg Art Gallery, Cal Poly University, “Fragmented Bodies: Violence or Identity?”, Pomona CA 1998

Creative Arts Workshop, “Rhythm, Gesture, Metaphor”, New Haven CT 1998

Cesar Chavez Gallery, “Fetish”, San Francisco CA 1998


Public Collections

Boise Museum of Art, Boise ID 2009 Acquisition

Gladwyne Elementary School, Chanlan Lee Memorial Installation 2009 Acquisition

The Museum of Art at Texas Tech University, Lubbock TX 2007 Acquisition

The University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson AZ 2007 Acquisition

Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson AZ 2007 Acquisition

University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma, Chickasha OK 2001 Acquisition


Awards & Grants

Mini Grant, College of Arts and Sciences, New Mexico State University 2012

Rising Star Grant, New Mexico State University 2012

Professional Development Grant,Tucson Pima Arts Council 2009

NMSU College of Arts and Sciences Dissemination Grant 2008

Contemporary Forum Grant, Phoenix Museum of Art 2005

Graduate Teaching Scholarship, University of Arizona 1997, 1998, 1999

FATE (Foundations & Art Theory in Education) Student Award 1999

Outstanding Graduate Teaching Award, UA College of Fine Arts 1999

Final Project Grant, UA College of Fine Arts 1999

Travel Grant, Tucson Pima Arts Council 1998


Publications & Citations

“Art Events”, Dianna Deling, Santa Fean August/September 2009

Philadelphia City Paper, “Hot Off the Prez, Robin Rice on Visual Art: ‘Obama-Rama’ and ‘Guilty Pleasures at Projects Gallery’”, Robin Rice February 10, 2009

“Went to Projects Last Friday”, <> February 8,2009

“All Small Redux at Dalton Gallery”, Susannah Darrow <> March 2,2009

Boise Weekly, Image reproduced on front and inside cover with short bio December 2008

“Soaring Upward,” Margret Regan Tucson Weekly January 13, 2008

“Review of Faculty Art Exhibition at UW-Stout,” Darren Tesar and Patrick Gantert Art Canary: The Twin Cities-Area Student Arts Writing Intitiative <> November 12, 2007

Tucson Museum of Art, An Eclectic Eye: Selections from the Dan Leach Collection, Tucson AZ (exhibition catalogue) October 2007

Downtown Tucsonan, “Julia Latané Returns to MOCA” October 2005 (contributing critic)

Tucson Citizen, “Our City’s Rich With Art” (May 12 cover story) May 12, 2005

University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma “Seventh Annual Juried Exhibition”, Chickasha OK (exhibition catalogue) Artlies: A Texas Art Journal, Volume 2 October 2001

“Texas Works, Art Zealot + Will Cannings” (contributing critic for West Texas area) Artlies: A Texas Art Journal, Volume I August 2001

“Nola Dixon Richards: The Other Side of Silence” (contributing critic for West Texas area) “Religious Themes Predominate At Apparatus Gallery’s Latest Exhibition”, Margaret Regan, Tucson Weekly December 1998

“The Fragmented Body”, a small group exhibition which featured my work received much critical attention and was ranked the third top exhibition in Orange County/Los Angeles in 1998 by The Orange County Register December 27, 1998

“Artists Seek Wholeness in Divided Lives”, Danielle Walsh, The Orange County Register, Fine Arts Section November 15, 1998

“Bodies of Expression”, Deborah L. Knaff, The Press Enterprise November 15, 1998

“Exhibit Explores Fragmented Bodies”, Cal Ploy Press November 16, 1998

“Headless Barbies on the March”, Only in L.A., Steve Harvey’s column in the Los Angeles Times November 18, 1998

“Rhythm, Gesture Metaphor”, a small group exhibition juried by Squeak Cornwalth which featured my work received much critical attention and was elected for Best of New Haven 1998: Staff Picks by The New Haven Advocate May 1998

“Painter’s Picks: Painting, Works on Paper”, William Zimmer, The New York Times May 10, 1998

“What’s the Word?”, Hank Hoffman, New Haven Advocate May 1998

“Written word becomes visual link in national show”, Judy Birke, New Haven Register May 1998