picture of Dan Treado Picture of Dan's studio Picture of Dan's studio Picture of Dan's studio

Artist Statement

Robert Ryman's comment about the nature of painting in the latter half of the twentieth century has always stuck with me: "It's not a question of what to paint, but rather, how to paint it." My paintings are process works that borrow subject matter from sources such as film and photography, physics, biology, x-ray and electron microscope images, and most recently, illustrations from anatomy books. The organic forms I tend to employ are fluid but restrained, and part of their function is to articulate the space that surrounds the form; paint is called to substitute for flesh, for air, for dust particles floating in cinematic light.

I use squeegees, scrapers, and invented brushes to build up many thin layers of paint that produce taut, skin-like surfaces that have almost no evidence of a mark of the hand. Often individual images are combined to form a single larger painting. The bigger picture reads as a chart of microscopic and macroscopic space – a kind of catalog of invisible things – that describes the slow motion dynamics of evolution as it relies on its twin engines of random adaption and mutation. The figures in the paintings are outside of time; they have no up or down, no perspectival geometry, no gravity. They are pictures of the absurd theater that is evolutionary simultaneity, of bodies in various states that have succeeded in achieving their potential, and then are willed by an unseen force to disperse and dissolve into newer and different forms. My studio practice and the processes I invent coincidentally approximate the way nature goes about its business.

The titles to the paintings are significant in that they add a third or fourth layer to layers already present in the paintings. They're often comical, the way nature can appear to be— in my mind, they describe the shortest one-act plays imaginable. Often they rely on language that is usually very specific to a particular discipline, such as names for race horses, or pop music song lyrics, or punch lines to old jokes; I think it fascinating, and useful, that these tropes follow the same set of rules involving random mutation and adaption that drives the life cycle of species.

Dan is represented by Addison/Ripley Fine Art in Washington, DC and Zg Gallery in Chicago, IL.

You can contact Dan at: dtreado@gmail.com.

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2016"You Are Getting Sleepy", Addison/Ripley, Washington DC
  • 2010"Requesting Quiet", Addison/Ripley, Washington DC
  • 2006"Glue and Gumption", Addison/Ripley, Washington DC
  • 2004"Invisible Things", Addison/Ripley, Washington DC
  • 2002"Fictions", Zg Gallery, Inc., Chicago, IL
  • 2001"Tales from the Patent Office", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • 1999"Paintings from Paris", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • 1998"New Paintings", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • 1997"Paintings", Anton Gallery, Washington, DC
  • 1991Graduate Thesis Show, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
  • 1987Senior Thesis Show, Georgetown University, Washington, DC

Group Exhibitions

  • 2015Alchemical Vessels, Healing Arts, Washington DC
  • 2013"Anarchistic Abstraction", University of Mary Washington, Fredericksburg, VA
  • 2012"Ten Year Anniversary Show", Zg Gallery, Inc., Chicago, IL
  • "Click: Space & Time", Addison/Ripley Fine Art, Washington DC
  • "All my Friends Are Painters", Addison/Ripley Fine Art, Washington DC (curated)
  • 2011Transformer Benefit Auction Exhibition, Mexican Cultural Institute, Washington DC
  • "Constructs IX", Center for Contemporary Art, Portsmouth, VA
  • "Constructs X", Space 301, Mobile, AL
  • "Strictly Painting", McLean Project for the Arts, McLean, VA
  • 2010"It's a Beautiful Thing", Jane Haslem Gallery, Washington DC
  • "Constructs VII", Washington & Lee University, Lexington, VA
  • "Constructs VIII", Center for Contemporary Art, Portsmouth, VA
  • 2009"Constructs VI", George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • 2008"Constructs V", Mary Washington College,
  • 2007"City Hall Art Collection", Wilson Building, Washington DC
  • 2006"No Representation", Wharehouse, Washington DC
  • 2003"Compendium", Zg Gallery, Inc., Chicago, IL
  • 2002"12 x 12", Zg Gallery, Inc., Chicago, IL
  • 2001"Emotional Attachment", District Fine Arts, Washington DC
  • 2000"Shimmer", Signal 66, Washington DC
  • "The Trinity (Desire, Memory, Sin)", film/video installation, Galapagos Art and Performance Space, Brooklyn, NY
  • "Traces", Frostburg State University, Frostburg, MD
  • 1999"WPA/Corcoran Auction Exhibition", Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC
  • Art-O-Matic, The Manhattan Laundry, Washington DC
  • 1998"Strictly Painting II", McLean Project for the Arts, McLean, VA
  • "Water", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • "WPA/Corcoran Auction Exhibition", Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington DC
  • 1997"First Annual Alumni Exhibition", Georgetown University, Washington DC
  • "Art as Investments, Investments as Art", East 49th Street, NY, NY
  • "Signal 66", Blagden Alley Art Space, Washington DC
  • "Surface Knowledge", George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • "Verticals", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • "Grant Finalists Exhibition", DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, Washington DC
  • 1996"Bansai Ikkei", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • "The Sublime Landscape", George Mason University, Fairfax, VA
  • "Exposure", Anton Gallery, Washington DC
  • "1480 Squares", DCAC, Washington DC
  • 1992Skowhegan Scholarship Candidates Group Show, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
  • Pratt MFA Candidates Group Exhibition, curated by Jay Gorney, Puck Building, NY, NY
  • 1988Georgetown University Fine Arts Kreeger Competition, Washington DC
  • 1987Georgetown University Fine Arts Kreeger Competition, Washington DC
  • Two Person Exhibition, Neuhause Collection, Washington DC

Awards & Residencies

  • 1998Cite' Internationale des Arts, residency fellowship, Paris, France
  • 1992Skowhegan Scholarship Award, residency award, Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, NY
  • 1988First Prize for Painting and Sculpture, Kreeger Competition, Georgetown University
  • Faculty Purchase Prize, Georgetown University
  • 1987First Prize for Painting and Printmaking, Kreeger Competition, Georgetown University


  • MFA, Pratt Insitute, Brooklyn, NY, 1992
  • Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, 1992
  • BA, Georgetown University, Washington DC, 1988

Selected Publications

  • Photoweenie, "All My Friends Are Prizefighters", June 2014
  • The Washington City Paper, "Click: Space and Time", June 2012
  • The Washington Post, "Panels for Discussion", September 30, 2006
  • The Washington Post, "Waxing Familiar", June 17, 2004
  • The Washington Post Sunday Magazine, "The Collectors", October 10, 2001
  • The Washington Review, "Tales From the Patent Office", October/November 2001
  • The Washington Post, "Painting Between the Lines: Treado at Anton Gallery", June 21, 2001
  • The Washington City Paper, "Objects In Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear", February 25, 2000
  • New American Painting, May 2000
  • The Washington City Paper, "Another Day Older", June 9, 2000
  • The Washington Times, "Art-O-Matic", June 11, 1999
  • KOAN, "Must See . . .", June, 1998