Bio & Artist Statement


Erika Rier is a self-taught artist working mostly in inks and paints on paper in a style she calls folk surrealism. After many years of oil painting and designing clothes, she shifted her focus to works on paper. Writing was her first love and she still secretly writes fiction but never poetry anymore. Having lived in Maine, Vermont, Connecticut, NYC, and Arizona, and Washington state; Erika now resides in Portland, OR.  She also has one of each of the following: a husband, a daughter, and a cat.

Artist Statement

Using ink, watercolor, gouache on paper I create work in a style I call folk surrealism. I’m focused on developing a visual language which I have been building over the past decade, filled with pattern, color, and line. The narrative thread in my work is constantly evolving, each drawing is almost the next page in a wordless book.

I seek to explore the inner life of womxn and the turmoil of the modern world using imagery drawn from folk art, mythology, nightmares, and popular culture. I create pieces that draw viewers in with their bright colors and delicate line work but as the viewer delves deeper into the piece they find themselves immersed in a complex and often nightmarish narrative. It is my mission to create art depicting womxn engaged with their world and shaping their reality, rather than depicting passive womxn shaped by the male gaze.

From Her Father’s House, 28″x40″, 2017