Last updated 2022.07
Erica Harney (s/h) was born in New York in 1984 and is a fine artist, curator, scenic painter and educator based in Greater Philadelphia since 2011. She holds a BFA in Drawing and Painting from Alfred University ('06) and an MFA in Drawing and Painting from the Pennsylvania State University ('10). She has also studied at the Santa Reparata International School of Art in Florence, Italy and has been an artist-in-residence at the Vermont Studio Center in Johnson, VT, Weir Farm Art Center in Connecticut, ArtScape Gibraltar Point in Toronto, and the Palazzo Rinaldi Artists' Residence in Italy. Since 2016 her studio has been based in Lansdowne, PA, just outside of West Philadelphia, and she became a member of the Lansdowne Arts Board in 2020.
The artist has worked professionally in numerous arts fields including teaching in higher and community education. She has held teaching positions at Alvernia University’s Philadelphia campus, the Pennsylvania State University’s University Park campus and Cecil College’s North East campus in Maryland as well as the Wallingford Community Arts Center in Wallingford, PA and the University City Arts League in West Philadelphia. She continues to teach regular painting workshops for Penn State Hershey Medical Center’s hospital staff and students.
Harney also has copious experience working in art museums and galleries as well as creating original artwork for corporate and public clients such as Penn State College of Medicine, Bancroft School and the 3M Corporation. Most significant has been her work a scenic artist for theatre, ballet, opera, television/film and museum/hospital displays. Notable production partners include Opera Philadelphia (most recently on E.A Poe’s The Raven), Opera Delaware and First State Ballet (both in Wilmington, DE), the Fulton Theatre in Lancaster, PA. She has also worked in film and television including for HBO, where she assisted on the set of Mare of Easttown, which was set and shot in Delaware County, PA. Erica has trained and worked with the Philadelphia Mural Arts Program and as an independent muralist and restoration artist in and around
Philadelphia. She has regularly collaborated with visual artists, musicians, writers, and choreographers on a wide range of creative projects. In 2021 she contributed the album art for Pittsburgh-based music duo Anne Eliza’s latest release, I Wish You Well. She has also contributed cover art for three recent volumes of poems about Philadelphia by Ernest Yates: Errata (2019), and Sometime a Fine Morning (2021), and Wicked World (2022).
Since the Pandemic, Erica has recommitted to her personal studio practice and has been focusing on paintings of landscape and architecture, influenced heavily by her extensive experience in painting backdrops for theatre as well as personal travels throughout the United States and beyond. Her work has been exhibited widely in galleries at the local, national, and international level since 2006. During the 2020 Lockdown period she began painting watercolor sketches of houses in her neighborhood- what ultimately became the “Houses of Lansdowne” series has evolved into a full-time business of creating custom house portraits and landscape paintings. Along with painting, Harney enjoys gardening, audiobooks, NPR, yoga & Pilates, hiking and traveling with her husband, and- most importantly- spending time with her feline sidekick / studio assistant, Rufus Theodore.