the Governor's Arts Award Winners

Paul Shapiro

Santa Fe

2010 recipient, Individual Artist

Paul Shapiro’s paintings have been exhibited and collected internationally. His artwork has been shown in venues as diverse as Galerie Roswitha Benkert in Zurich, Switzerland; Art Embassies Program in Copenhagen, Denmark; Los Angeles and Fort Worth Art Expos; and in collections including the Neutrogena Corporation, Swope Art Museum, and New Mexico Museum of Art. Shapiro came to Santa Fe in the early 1980s and immediately established a name for himself as a significant representational painter. In the early 1990s, he shifted focus and began to produce abstract work, a style for which he is known today. Shapiro said that after 20 years of representational painting, he turned to abstract painting in 1990. "Even though my work was fairly loose and abstract, I felt very confined by the envelope around recognizable forms and gravity-based relationships. In my abstract paintings, I have tried to create a concrete reality that brings an invisible world to the surface: evocative implications of a suggested parallel reality similar to what happens in poetry." In his letter supporting Shapiro’s nomination, Jon Carver said, "Paul’s interest in art and his commitment to painting is unassailable and extends to the depths of his being."