Tajh Rust is a visual artist based in New York.

Through figuration and abstraction, he explores the relationships between black identity and space. Rust collaborates with his subjects to determine how they are represented and also employs film and literary references to draw connections between portraiture, language, and modes of representation. While also taking inspiration from his own travels and imagination, Rust manipulates the boundary between realism and surrealism.


Matthew Brown Los Angeles


Tajh Rust


  • 2019 MFA, Yale University, School of Art, New Haven, CT
  • 2011 BFA, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, New York, NY


Designed by Albert Hicks IV & Marcus Washington Jr.

Residencies & Awards

  • 2020 Open Call, The Shed, New York, NY
  •   The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation Grant
  • 2019 Black Rock, Dakar, Senegal
  • 2018 Institute of Investigative Living at A-Z West, Joshua Tree, CA
  • 2017 Martha Trevor Award, Worldstudio AIGA Scholarship
  • 2010 Palmer Hayden Artist Travel Grant

Group Exhibitions

  • 2022 Black Rock 40, Douta Seck, Dakar, Senegal
  •   Fire Figure Fantasy: Selections from ICA Miami's Collection, Institute of Contemporary Art Miami, Miami, FL
  • 2021 Open Call, The Shed, New York, NY
  •   and I will wear you in my heart of heart, The FLAG Art Foundation, New York, NY
  •   A Face Like Mine, Mattatuck Museum, Waterbury, CT
  •   Free as Air and Water, Mattatuck Museum, Waterbury, CT (curator)
  • 2020 For Which It Stands, Ford Foundation Gallery & Assembly Room, New York, NY
  • 2019 Permutations, Sibler Gallery, Goucher College, Baltimore, MD
  •   Vernacular Interior, Hales Gallery, New York, NY
  •   Again, Always, Yale University, Green Hall Gallery, New Haven, CT
  • 2018 In Plain Sight/Site, Artspace, New Haven, CT
  •   Familiar Boundaries. Infinite Possibilities, August Wilson Center, Pittsburgh, PA
  •   Strange Beach, Fridman Gallery, New York, NY
  •   Mirrored By Nature, Welancora Gallery, Brooklyn, NY
  •   Giving Up the Ghost: Artifacts/A Study of Power and Solidarity Against White Violence in Modernity
  •   Rush Arts Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA
  • 2017 Winterfly Benefit, Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, Brooklyn, NY
  •   Black At Yale, Yale University, Afro-American Cultural Center Gallery, New Haven, CT
  •   Make___Place, The New York Immigrant Coalition, New York, NY
  •   Voices Need Heroes, NURTUREart, Brooklyn, NY
  • 2016 Speak Out, Bronx Art Space, Bronx, NY


Designed by Albert Hicks IV & Marcus Washington Jr.