Seth Ruggles Hiler is most influenced by the communities and geography of his surroundings. He creates and records connections to people and place through painting and drawing. Seth received a BFA from Syracuse University in 2002 and an MFA from the New York Academy of Art in 2005. He teaches portraiture at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC and is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Visual Arts and the co-founder of the Sustainability through the Arts Program at Bard High School Early College in Newark, New Jersey. He maintains a studio Bushwick, Brooklyn.
Hiler’s work is exhibited in solo and group exhibitions at galleries and institutions throughout the North East and in Canada, including the Morris Museum in New Jersey, New York City’s Salmagundi Club, and Syracuse University. In 2010, the Monmouth Museum of Art featured his work in the solo exhibition “NJ Emerging Artists Series: Seth Ruggles Hiler’s Portraits.” The premiere of “Ash Unravel,” a dance and drawing in motion collaboration with dancer/choreographer Michael Caldwell, was presented in Toronto in August of 2011 at the Dance Made in Canada Festival. Guerilla Galleries (GuGa) in Newark, NJ presented “CROPPED, An Intimate View,” a solo show of large graphite portraits in September 2011. More of his solo painting exhibitions have included: “East of Orange” at Bergen College, “The Faces of Sage” at the SAGE Center in Chelsea (an ongoing exhibition), “Portraits on Pine Street” (POPS) at Gallery 73 See in Montclair, NJ, and “STUDIO VISITS” at DUO Multicultural Center (DMAC) on the Lower East Side of Manhattan.
The artist combines his drive for expression with the knowledge gained from his training. The result is a classical sensibility with a contemporary understanding of color and composition. He strives to go beyond creating likeness or surface description by expressing a momentary relationship to the subject or place, informed by a collection of past experiences. Ultimately, the main goal of viewing the final work is to share in that intimate exchange between artist, subject, viewer and community.