Clarissa Shanahan studied painting at the New York Academy of Art, The Art Students League of New York and the Isabel O’Neal Studio on a full scholarship. She holds a BFA from the University of Pennsylvania and PAFA and is a Bread Scholar (a merit-based full scholarship from the University of Pennsylvania). She is represented by the Nichols Berg Gallery, Philadelphia.
A past member of the Society of Gilders, she has extensive studies and professional experience in decorative arts. In 1993, she received a full scholarship and invitation from Friends of Vieilles Maisons Françaises to restore a 19th-century horse carriage in Buxy, France.
She spent 15 years in the film industry as a scenic artist, producing sets for over 40 film and television productions. In addition, she produced both original and reproduction paintings for numerous productions, including the Lee Krasner paintings for the film Pollock. Her credits include Julie Taymor’s The Tempest, Salt, Summer of Sam, Angels in America and Boardwalk Empire. She is a longtime member of the United Scenic Artists 829.
Shanahan has taught at the Isabel O’Neil Studio, the Studio School of Stage Design, Fleisher Art Memorial and the Studio at the Nichols Berg Gallery.
Her courses include Encaustic Painting, Gilding, Manuscript iIlumination, Patinations for Sculptors, Color Theory and seminars on Applied Art & Design in Film.