Tim Anderson Biography

Born in 1954, Chicago-based artist Tim Anderson has exhibited continuously since 1978 in Chicago and internationally. He was first moved by art as a young child, upon seeing a print of a Van Gogh self-portrait in his parents’ home. Knowing Van Gogh was disturbed, he was fascinated. His many visits to the Art Institute of Chicago in his youth inspired him to become an artist.

Anderson is one of the founders of “The Coldhouse Group”, which in 1987 initiated a new and successful exhibition concept using abandoned cold storage warehouses and rail terminals slated for demolition as temporary exhibition halls. These shows led to an international exchange of art and artists. In 1989, he started exhibiting his paintings in Europe and has continued to do so in Edinburgh, Moscow, Munich, Regensburg, Krakow, Wolfenbuttel, Italy, and most recently in Paris. From these travels, he has researched and referenced his subject matter. Tim Anderson has also taught at both the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and Columbia College.

Anderson describes his love of research as equal to his love of painting. Fascinated by the the journeys and histories of humanity, beasts, and the iconography he associates with these subjects, behind his multi-faceted work is the exploration and in-depth study of the subjects he chooses to paint. He has focused on the subject of the human visage for the past three decades and is known for large portraits with a strong yellow background. The yellow, a Dutch color from old Holland, is a harsh yellow that he loves. The drawings are done in pencil and graphite. Recently, he was appointed by the city of Chicago to paint several portraits of illustrious Chicagoans, which ranged from icons such as Al Capone, to Michael Jordan, to Studs Terkel and Nelson Algren. Like his fascination with people the various beasts of the world and their relationships to humans and to each other also interest the artist. Anderson has also always been captivated with journeys over water and has worked on boats since the age of 15, and they often find their way into his work, both alone, and in the presence of his people and things.