photo: Evert Nelson

Erin Wiersma is a visual artist whose ongoing studio practice focuses on the body's capacity to absorb and respond to an environment. Her current practice is site-specific, located within Konza Prairie Biological Station. She is represented by Robischon Gallery in Denver, Colorado, and Galerie Wehlau in Munich, Germany, which published "After the Burn," a catalog of her most recent exhibition. Wiersma's work has been featured in numerous exhibitions both nationally and internationally. Selections from her exhibition history include "Earthly Observatory" at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago Galleries and Wester: Works on Paper from the Konza Prairie at the Mid-America Arts Alliance, along with various solo and group exhibitions. She has also been selected for multiple residencies, speaking engagements, commissions, and publications, including the 20/21 The Drawing Center's Viewing Program, the 2022 Prairie Festival Artist at The Land Institute, and The Center for Human and Nature's publication "Minding Nature." Wiersma currently serves as Associate Professor of Art and Coordinator of the Drawing Area.

My artistic practice focuses on the body's capacity to absorb and respond to an environment. The Konza Prairie works on paper are created on location in one of the few remaining protected grasslands in the world. I create a record of the land, using both bio-char produced from controlled burns and the embossing from the forbs, fauna, and rocky terrain as they incise and transform the paper surface, echoing the topography. Pulling, rubbing, dragging, pushing, and lifting -- changed by the elements; wind, temperature, humidity, and landscape itself. Paper offers an unparalleled medium to make the process visible to the viewer. I create with the prairie; it influences my actions into large-scale works, resulting from each locale's varying burn treatments, fire intensities, and vegetative composition. As the prairie becomes both the subject and the medium, a new landscape is revealed, allowing me to know where I dwell.


Showroom 21, Galerie Fenna Wehlau, München, Germany, 2023

*Evolve | Become: Works on Paper from the Konza Prairie, Red Barn, The Land Institute, Salina, KS, 2022

Konza Prairie Biological Station: Reading Room (Collaborators: Katie's Kingery Page, Landscape Architect; Katy Sibler, Doctorial candidate; Carol Sevin Librarian at K-State Libraries), Red Barn, The Land Institute, Salina, KS, 2022

*Visitors: Works on Paper from the Konza Prairie, Lofgren Room, Sandzen Gallery, Lindsborg, KS, 2022

Then & Now: Clara Hatton, Erin Wiersma, and the Prairie Festival, Clara Hatton Center, Lindsborg, KS, Curator: Bill North, President of Clara Hatton Center, 2022

*Land Institute Prairie Festival Artist, Salina Art Center Salina, KS, 2021

Earthly Observatory, SAIC Galleries, School of the Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, Curators: Giovanni Aloi; Andrew S. Yang, 2021

Prairie. River | Lisa Grossman and Erin Wiersma, The Volland Store, Alma, KS, Curator: Patty Reece, Founder of The Volland Store, 2020

art KARLSRUHE, Galerie Fenna Wehlau, Rheinstetten, Germany, 2020

All Terrain, Spartanburg Museum of Art, Spartanburg, SC, 2020

Catch the Shadow: International Contemporary Drawing, Bo-ai Gallery, National Dr. Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, Taipei, Taiwan, 2019

*Tracing Watersheds: Konza Prairie, Salina Art Center, Salina, KS, 2019

Material Differences, Birke Art Gallery of Marshall University, Huntington, WV, 2019

Rocket Summer – Temperature Curatorial Project Series, Neon Heater Art Gallery, Findlay, OH, Curator: Ian Breidenbach, founder of Neon Heater Art Gallery, 2019

Paper Positions, Galerie Fenna Wehlau (two-person with Rupert Eder), Berlin, Germany, 2019

* Wester: Works on Paper from the Konza Prairie, Culture Lab, M-AAA, Kansas City, MO, 2019

Poetry | Line, Galerie Fenna Wehlau, Munich, Germany, 2019

* UMC Gallery of Art & Design, Warrensburg, MO, 2018

* The Viewing Room, Robischon, Denver CO, 2017

"Infrastructure: Land, Mind, Country" Artists from the Two Coats of Paint Residency Program, Seminar Gallery, AICAD, Brooklyn NY. Curated by: Sharon Butler and Rachel Farber, 2017

* "Gestural Mapping" Hand-Rudy Gallery, Dairy Art Center, Boulder, CO, 2017

"With/drawn: Nancy Morrow & Erin Wiersma" A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, 2016

* "Erin Wiersma: Solo Exhibition" Jacqueline B. Charno Gallery, Kansas City Artist Coalition, Kansas City, MO, 2015

* "Mapping Chaos" Clayton Staples Gallery, Wichita State University, Wichita, KS, 2015

* “Line Theory” A.I.R. Gallery, Brooklyn, NY, 2014

* “Traced Time” Johnson Gallery, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS, 2014

"Draw, Drawing, Drawn” Vita Art Center, Ventura, CA, Curator: Leah Ollman / Best in Show, 2014

* “Erin Wiersma” Rebecca Randall Bryan Art Gallery, Coastal Carolina University, Conway, SC, 2013

“New Drawings: Sara Schneckloth & Erin Wiersma” SOHO20 Gallery, New York, NY, 2012

* “Momentary Traces” Gallery at Three Rivers Community College, Norwich, CT, 2012

* “Intervals of Time” University Gallery, Pittsburg State University, KS, 2012

* “The Human Presence” Triangle Gallery, Sinclair Community College, Dayton, OH, 2012

* “The Evidence of Being” Moberly Area Community College Gallery, Moberly, MO, 2011

“Drawing in the Expanded Field” Clara Hatton Gallery, Colorado State University, CO

Juror: Deanna Petherbridge and Howard Riley, 2010

* “One Week in November” Sarah A. Coyne Gallery, Syracuse University, NY, 2010