Eric Harley Schweitzer (b. 1974, Halifax, NS) grew up in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Music and the arts were an important part of his childhood. As a child, he studied piano and trumpet and is a self-taught guitarist. He learns through observation and osmosis and essentially considers himself a self-taught artist.
Formally, he has studied art at the Montgomery College School of Art & Design in Silver Spring, MD, Glen Echo Park, Glen Echo, MD, and Wooster Community Art Center in Danbury, CT and briefly at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Eric is a guest artist at Sam Noto's Landscape Studios in Beltsville, MD and was an assistant sculptor for Sam Weitzman.
Eric served in the U.S. Navy as an Aviation Electronics Technician and later earned his B.A. in Communication Research from the University of Maryland, College Park. Eric works in a loose, abstract, gestural way and carries this style throughout all his media. His paintings and other 2-D work largely incorporate heavy line and familiar figurative forms. While "house" paint is one of his favorites due to its fluidity, he also works in traditional oils and other mixed media. He attributes his gestural painting style to the early impact of street graffiti back when it was more ubiquitous in the 1980's and its stark contrast to his own New England countryside upbringing.
I paint to capture what I feel at that moment and work to manipulate this image further using the principles of composition and spontaneity. I firmly believe that in the act of creating, especially art - one finds oneself closest to a higher power. I am driven to share this spiritual feeling throughout my work, present new ideas and compositions that reveal an immediacy and mood that is continuously dynamic and grows with the viewer. I engage my work, as I wake to each day - clean-slate, fresh, and with an underlying altruistic purpose.
"Charles Krause/ The Newtown Project: A Call To Arms!," Brenda Hayes, This Light Sounds For Social Change Radio CPR, 3/2013, Time Stamp: 0:38:38 podcast
"Eric Harley Schweitzer: Artist profile,” Stephen Mack, Examiner, 8/15/2011
“Working With The Abstract: Chevy Chase Artist Lets Colors Do The Talking, Jordan Edwards, Gazette, 12/27/2010
“Appetite for Abstraction at the Good News Café,” Ryan Wiltzius, The Town Vibe, 6/11/2013
“Artists contribute to 'Newtown Project: A Call to Arms!'," Mark Jenkins, The Washington Post, 1/25/2013
Image: “The Sorcerer,” Events in Connecticut, The New York Times, 8/18/2012
Image: “The Sorcerer,” Calendar of Events, The Housatonic Times, 8/11/2012
“Eric Harley Schweitzer: Paintings & Works On Paper," Waverly Street Gallery, 1/04/2011
“Former Naval Technician Turns to Art,” Kate Oczypok, Bethesda Patch, 1/26/2011
“Eric Harley Schweitzer: Paintings & Works On Paper,” Natalie Neumann, Chevy Chase Patch, 1/21/2011
“Art in Unexpected Places,” Jeremy B. White, Roll Call, 3/1/2010
“Working With The Abstract: Chevy Chase Artist Lets Colors Do The Talking," Jordan Edwards, Gazette, 12/27/2010
"Eric Harley Schweitzer: Working Process," A Walk Into Abstracts, Vol.4, Sue St. John, 4/2012
Cover Art for "Tap Dancing Through Black Holes," Robert Whitehill-Bashan, 4/2014