Valley Cottage Painter will have her work displayed in Times Square

For any artist, a healthy mix of passion, creativity and communication is important and necessary ready to tell their truth to the world.

Local Valley Cottage artist Elaine Schloss has held a passion for art since the first time she held a paintbrush, and her ever evolving love for the medium has helped her to be one of the winners for the Kessler Collection’s Next Original contest. The grand prize? Schloss and eight other participants will now have their work displayed in New York City’s Times Square.

Out of approximately 1,500 artist submissions, Schloss was fortunate to be chosen to publicly display her work which she says has been one of the major successes in her artistic career.

Schloss began experimenting with art when she was a child where she was able to foster her talent using materials provided by her uncle who worked in the toy business and would give her  paint by number kits.

Her creative drive began to spark during this period as the kits would often have missing colors which inspired the young painter to mix her own palette and create her own artistic ideas using the materials she had. 

She gradually became more and more interested in art and experimented with different media such as pastels and acrylics.

In terms of her subjects, Schloss has considered human models to be her source of inspiration as the communication between the subject and the artist has proven to be a benefit to her work.

“Art is communication,” Schloss proclaims. “Everything inspires me as an artist. The world is full of such wonderful things.”

Prior to the contest, Schloss had made a name for herself selling various pieces from galleries and exhibiting  her work at Casa del Sol in Nyack.

Her decision to apply for the Next Original contest stemmed from seeing an ad for it on a billboard in Times Square which she saw as a chance to showcase her work to a wider audience without any sense of fear or apprehension. 

“If there’s a painting and nobody sees it it’s not complete,” Schloss says.

In discussing her pieces, she noted that two of her submissions “The Red Gloves” and “The Yellow Hat” portrayed the model wearing the titled clothing piece while evoking the emotion that was felt by both the model and Schloss during the painting period.

“They are always in the moment,” Schloss said about other subjects. “They respond to the electric fuel between us.”

After being selected as one of the finalists, Schloss was flown down to Savannah with the other artists where she got to engage with Richard Kessler about her work and her career as an artist.

In addition to her piece being showcased, Kessler also granted Schloss the opportunity to have her paintings displayed in his gallery over the course of the year.

Schloss has expressed nothing but gratitude for her experience and hopes that other aspiring artists hold the same passion and dreams as she did early in her career. 

“Just do art, art, art. Do it wherever and whenever you can,” Schloss says.

One of Schloss’s pieces will be displayed in Times Square on New Years and for the following week. For more information regarding the Next Original contest or the Kessler Collection, please visit their website at 

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