Michael Steirnagle


Usually using the figure as a point of departure, Michael Steirnagle’s “Abstracted Impressionist” paintings are assemblages of lush paint, color and light designed to lead the viewer through a maze of shapes and form sometimes blurring the line between traditional and abstract painting. Subtle story telling is also a part of the mix allowing the viewer to not only become lost in textural “whimsy” but also to participate in the visual narrative.

“I paint people, color, abstract shapes and light. People are initially drawn to a work of art by its shapes, values and colors—not by the subject matter which is secondary. My hope is that the viewer will find pleasure in the arrangement of shapes, colors and textures of the painting as well as in its subject which emerges, disappears and re-emerges throughout the work.”

Michael Steirnagle has been both a teacher of art and an illustrator. He served as an associate professor at Palomar College in San Marcos, California, a professional illustrator from 1975 to 1993 and an art director from 1972 to 1976. He illustrated the book, Billy Lazroe and the King of the Sea (1997), and the book, All By Herself (1999), both published by Harcourt Brace Children’s Books.




            Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA

            University of Texas at El Paso, El Paso, TX                       



 CODA Gallery, Palm Desert, 2016          

 Paul Scott Gallery, 2012, Group

            Palomar College, 2005, Solo

            Joe Wade Galleries, 2003

            Blair Carnahan Fine Arts, 2003, Solo

            Boehm Gallery, 2002, Solo

            Adair Margo Gallery, 2002, Solo

            Campagna Gallery, 1998, Solo

            Adair Margo Gallery, 1996, Group

            Palomar College, 1997, Solo

            New York Society of Illustrators, 1990, Group

            Los Angeles Society of Illustrators, 1991-1992, Group

            University of Texas at El Paso, 1986, Solo



            Gold Medal, Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles

            Gold Medal, Society of Illustrators, Los Angeles

            Pat Nagel Award, LA Society of Illustrators


Selected Collections:         

            University of Texas at El Paso

            Palomar College

            United States Air Force

            Colombia Health Care

            Broadway Equity Fights Aids

            Harcourt Brace

            Trammell Crowe

            Various private collections, California,

            New York, Texas, Florida and New Mexico       


Professional Experience:        

            Associate Professor of Art, Palomar College, San Marcos, Ca.

            Freelance Illustrator 1975 to 1993

            Art Director 1972-1976


Publications and Books:

            “Sketchbook Confidential II”, Northlight Books, 2012

            “Southwest Art Magazine” Jan. 2011

            “Art Collector Magazine” Dec. 2010

            “Art Collector Magazine” Jan. 2012

            “Billy Lazroe and the King of the Sea”, Harcourt Brace Children’s book. 1997

            “All By Herself”, Harcourt Brace Children’s book. 1999


Selected Commissions:                      

            Trammell Crowe

            American Airlines



            Viking Books

            Penguin Books

            Houghton Mifflin

            Harcourt Brace

            Texas Monthly

            Los Angeles Times

            Major League Baseball