Surfacing Series is comprised of much smaller works (7 x 5 in) on either wooden panels or acrylic rice paper. In some instances, "intentional gatherings" of works have been grouped together to form one larger work, as in the case of  Surfacing,  which is one large panel, 28 x 70 inches, comprised of 56 wooden pieces, each 7 x 5 inches. Mediums vary from a combination of charcoal, sumi ink and/or oil in layered, monochromatic tones of black, white and blue-grey.

Drawings on acrylic rice paper in the same series are all individually framed and presented as unique pieces. The intimacy of the scale (7 x 5 in) contrasts with the physicality of the layering involved in working up many of the surfaces here and the artist became aware of the emotional release. She states, “I felt more and more compelled to keep doing these little works, not knowing where they were taking me, or what they meant, but finding consolation and balm in the process. I realized much later that they were a direct reaction to the corresponding events over the course of the summer; I had lost my desire for exuberant color and went out and stocked up on charcoal and sumi ink.” While most of the work in the Surfacing series are miniature abstractions and patterns – sometimes combined with strands of thread, here and there one might find trees, forests, flowers, birds, and mountains as well as hand-scribed entries from the artist’s journal or a quotation from a revered individual.

Smolen explains, “The emotional impetus for the series was, initially, the feeling of going under, feeling radically hopeless and despondent, not just because of professional disappointments due to the pandemic lockdown, but also, because of the traumas and cruelty which seemed to escalate and pervade our news cycle in a torturous, repetitive manner. The work ended up becoming a lifeline of sorts; something to hold onto and pull myself through the storm.”

Smolen is deeply connected to and concerned about the natural world. She ascribes to Edward O. Wilson’s concept of “biophilia,” the word he coined to describe humankind’s deep affinity for nature. The artist believes nature is, as Wilson describes it, “the refuge of the spirit, remote, static, richer even than imagination.”

A former gallerist, the artist decided to return to her own practice in 2018 when she closed the brick and mortar TheoGanz Studio on Main Street in Beacon where she presently lives with her husband, David, and their dog, Henry. She continues to represent original Inuit graphics and carvings from Kinngait (formerly Cape Dorset) under TheoGanz Studio. Her art studio is located in Newburgh, New York at Regal Bag Studios on the waterfront of the Hudson River.

Updated Dec 25, 2020

Sleeping Whales and Flukes drawings added April 2021 - ongoing and continuing the Surfacing Series.  All drawings  of the whales and the Gatherings in this series were photographed by
Lori Adams, photographer.

Surfacing Series 2020 –
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil on birch panel
Apple Tree
2021
Oil on birch panel
48 x 36 x 2 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Charcoal on Arches Aquarelle
The Sleeping Pod of Whales I
2021
Charcoal on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Charcoal on Arches Aquarelle
The Sleeping Pod II
2021
Charcoal on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on Arches Huile
Vertical Fluke
2021
Mixed media on Arches Huile
35 x 25 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on Arches Huile
Fluke 2
2021
Mixed media on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 4
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 3
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 6
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 5
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on Arches Aquarelle
Fluke 13
2021
Mixed media on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 7
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 8
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on Arches Huile
Fluke 9 (The Architect's Fluke)
2021
Mixed media on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed Media on Arches Huile
Fluke 10
2021
Mixed Media on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and Ink on Arches Huile
Fluke Eleven
2021
Oil and Ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and ink on Arches Huile
Fluke 12
2021
Oil and ink on Arches Huile
26 x 35 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Ink on Arches Aquarelle
Fluke 15 (Spring Fluke)
2021
Ink on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Charcoal, ink on Arches Aquarelle
Fluke 14
2021
Charcoal, ink on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Ink on Arches Aquarelle
Fluke 16 (Healthy Planet Happy Whale)
2021
Ink on Arches Aquarelle
22 x 30 in
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Collection of @sylvia_demarco
INTENTIONAL Gathering III
2020
Collection of @sylvia_demarco
San Juan, PR
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on paper
CHILDHOOD BLISS Gathering
2020-2021
Mixed media, thread on paper
(20) 7x5 in image each in a 8x6 in frame mounted on one panel

32 x 30 inches overall

Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and mixed media on paper
TIDAL MEMORY Gathering
2020-2021
Oil and mixed media on paper
(20) 7x5 in drawings each in a 8x6 framed mounted to one panel

32 x 30 inches overall

Collection of Sylvia De Marco
San Juan & Vieques, PR
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on paper
ASCENT Gathering
2020-2021
Mixed media on paper
(20) 7x5 in images each in a 8x6 in frame mounted onto one panel

32 x 30 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on paper
FOX SPIRIT Gathering
2020-2021
Mixed media on paper
(20) 7x5 in image each in a 8x6 frame mounted onto one panel

32 x 30 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on paper
ORGANIC Gathering
2020
Mixed media on paper
(18) 7x5 in images each in a 8x6 frame mounted onto one panel

24 x 36 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – (18) 7x5 inch images each in a 8x6 frame mounted on one panel.
INTENTIONAL Gathering III, 2020
Surfacing Series
(18) 7x5 inch images each in a 8x6 frame mounted on one panel.
Mixed media, some with thread on rice paper

26 x 40 inches

Collection of Sylvia De Marco
San Juan and Vieques, PR
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – (24) 7x5 inch images each in a 8x6 frame mounted onto one panel
Intentional Gathering II
2020
(24) 7x5 inch images each in a 8x6 frame mounted onto one panel
34 x 38 inch overall

Private Collection

New Jersey
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Oil and mixed media on wood panel
ISLANDS
2020-2021
Oil and mixed media on wood panel
56 (7x5 in) wood panels to birch panel

28.5 x 70.5 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on wood panel
Sleeping Pair
2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on wood panel
Ancient Dreams
2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on wood panel
Blue Pod Dreaming
2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on wood panel
Even Whales Sleep
2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Floating Petals
2021
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Forgotten Dreams
2021
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Lone Dreamer
2021
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Tidal Memory, 2021
Mixed media, thread on acrylic rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on wood panel
Whales Sleep With Half Their Brain to Avoid Drowning
2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
When the mind is still, the universe surrenders (Lao Tzu)
2021
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Sleeping Pod Trio, 2021
Mixed media on paper
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Greenwater Whales, 2021
Mixed media on paper
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
Pod of Sleeping Whales, 2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inches
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Blue Pod, 2021
Mixed media on oil paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – oil and ink on wood panel
Vieques Horse, 2021
detail, ISLANDS
oil and ink on wood panel
7x5 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on oil paper
Mountains and Rivers Without End (Gary Snyder)
2021
Mixed media, thread on oil paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – oil on wood panel
Blue Flower, 2021
detail, ISLANDS
oil on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Once Upon a Time, 2021
Mixed media on wood panel
7x5 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Heart Island, 2021
Mixed media on rice paper
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Deep Dive II, 2021
Mixed media on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Deep Dive I, 2020
Mixed media, thread on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Working the Blues, 2020
Mixed media, thread on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Detail, Intentional Gathering III
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Detail, Intentional Gathering III
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Detail, Intentional Gathering III
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Detail, Intentional Gathering III
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Tidal Pool, 2020
Mixed media, thread on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed

Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
Stepping Out to the Sea, 2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inches
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Blue Dance 2020
for Tim Pitsiulak (March 10, 1967 - Dec 23, 2016)
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inches

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
Family Tree, 2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inches
8x6 framed

Private Collection
Beacon, NY
(CL)
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Beacon, NY
Embrace, 2020
Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Detail, Intentional Gathering II
2020
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
detail, Intentional Gathering II
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Clamp up of Surfacing
56 (7x5 inch mixed media on wood panels)
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Blue Dahlia, 2020
Mixed media on paper
7x5 inch image
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Deep Thoughts
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Spirit World, 2020
Mixed media on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Conjure, 2020
Mixed media on paper
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
In-between the Raindrops, 2020
Mixed media, thread on paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed

Private Collection
Beacon, NY
(RT)
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Cow, 2020
Mixed media on oil paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed

Private Collection
Hopewell, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Buster Levi Gallery, 121 Main Street, Cold Spring, NY
Eleni Smolen
recent work
Buster Levi Gallery, 121 Main Street, Cold Spring, NY
Dec 4 - 27, 2020

Saturdays 1-6 pm and by appointment
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –

ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Floating Petal,
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Dream of Crete
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Path to the Mountain Top
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

35 3/8 x 25 1/2 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
A Quiet Place
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7 x 5 inch image

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
1 of 56 mixed media panels
7x5 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
1 of 56 mixed media wood panels
7x5 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
detail, Surfacing
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Falling, 2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Eternal Recurrence, 2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Surfacing #32, 2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed

Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
Waiting
Mixed media, threads on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inch image
We'll Never Tell
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image
8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – (56) 7x5 inch mixed media on gessoed wood panels permanently mounted onto one panel and framed
Surfacing
Surfacing Series
(56) 7x5 inch mixed media on gessoed wood panels permanently mounted onto one panel and framed
28.5 x 70.5 inches overall
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 panels each
7x5 inches
mixed media on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 panels each
7x5 inches
mixed media on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 wood panels each
7x5 inches
mixed media on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 wood panels
7x5 inches
mixed media on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 panels each
7x5 inches
mixed media on wood panel
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – 7x5 inches
detail, Surfacing
56 wood panels each
7x5 inches
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice panel
Amor Fati
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice panel
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Pushing Through
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 in image

8x6 framed
Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Surfacing #5
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Prairie Wind
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
Rain at Twilight
2020
Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Water Flower (for Amy Lipton 1956-2020)
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
Installation view, east wall, from exhibition of Surfacing Series Recent Work
Dec 2020
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Lollipop Tree
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Kingston, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Cat's Cradle
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Kingston, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Storm Eye, Category 3
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Kingston, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
Surfacing Series, #26 (green ink, turquoise thread)
2020
Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Newburgh, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Tree For My Family
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
The Well is Full
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Little Big Wave
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Beacon, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Untitled (Pale Gray Flow)
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x 6 framed
Private Collection
Wappingers Falls, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Untitled (Tree)
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Wappingers Falls, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Untitled #24 (Blue Fog)
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x 5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Cold Spring, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Untitled #29 (Spruce)
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Cold Spring, NY
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 –
installation view, south wall
2020
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
For Lars von Trier
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Stellar Space
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Tree of My Dreams
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Memory of Mykonos
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Blue Spiral
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
Vieques, Puerto Rico
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Clearing
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Private Collection
New York
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Guardians
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Collection of the Artist
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Palm for the Solstice (for Sylvia)
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7 x 5 inch

8x6 framed
Private Collection
New York
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Snow Falling on Cedar
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media on rice paper
Haiku
2020
Mixed media on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread on rice paper
Distance
2020
Mixed media, thread on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
ELENI SMOLEN Surfacing Series 2020 – Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
Gloved Hand of the Artist
2020
Mixed media, thread, on rice paper
7x5 inch image

8x6 framed
Collection of the Artist