KNOW YOUR ARTIST
Artist Christopher Shellhammer was born in 1962 in Pennsylvania.
In kindergarten years, since he was self-taught in painting hundreds of watercolor paintings on leftover white cardboard which holds the instant handi-wipe rag that was popular in the 60’s and 70’s. After so much watercolor paintings he has done and with this going on, his grandmother decided to get him the oil set in the Christmas of 1973. He sold numerous paintings at the local hospital year round exhibition for fundraising and had several national shows across America included that he landed first place in portrait competition at Pittsburgh Center for the Art in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1980 before entering college.
During the high school days, he was helped by a friend Art Professor Jeanne Conner since there was no art program available at the high school to prepare to enter the college level. He was accepted to Carnegie-Mellon University, his father’s alma mater and graduated in 1984 with B.F.A. degree in Metalwork and minor in Painting. During the college days, he received several tops of the class achievement and monetary award in freshman, junior and senior year in academic and Art. Addition to this, his first prized national recognition show was the following year after graduation, the “Prospective Artists” (only 7 artists were invited to this show from the whole city of Pittsburgh) at the Pittsburgh Plan for Art in Oakland, PA in 1985.
Hit hard still by the domino effect from the recession of 1982, living in the red rust belt region, his mother suggested him to go into medical field since he had the medical drawing research background. At first, he worked the various job as the freelance artist, on call teacher and cleaning floor then entered into the nursing home and hospital care full time for four years while pursuing the metalwork, painting and exhibiting hundreds of his works locally and regional states area.
In the beginning of the year of 1990, he decided to pursue his metalwork for more experience in precious metal in silver and gold. He landed a job as a metal polisher exclusively for Paloma Picasso’s bracelet for one company then moved up from company to the company into becoming a diamond setter and senior jeweler well into the early year of 2000. Along with this career, he opened his first art and jewelry gallery in 1997 until it was too much involvement running it and not producing his own work, it closed in 2000 but put it online in 2003 on various websites included his own for painting and sculpture suggested by friends especially his oldest brother. He pauses from this practice of doing jewelry to free up more time to do something far out experience relating to the art as in inspiration precisely for painting. Before 2003, he studied computer for web knowledge and online exhibition for two years so he can travel to the unknown world outside of United States of America without having to stay in one place to exhibit his work and this is the purpose of doing this online shows in which is unlimited and always open 356 days a year. He still continues exclusively doing full-time painting, exhibiting worldwide in galleries and mostly online exhibitions and traveling to Canada and especially to the Far East of the world as Japan, Taiwan, Guam, China, and the second home in the Philippines since 2003.
Education: Received Bachelor of Fine Arts, (B.F.A.) in Metalsmiths and Painting in 1984 from Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pa, U.S.A.