1950-1952 University of Southern California, MFA
1948-1950 Mexico City College, Mexico City, BA
1946-1948 Cleveland School of Art, Graduate
1942-1946 US Navy
1940-1942 Western Reserve University, School of Architecture


2013 Lifetime Achievement Award from Peter and Madeleine Martin Foundation, Taos, NM
2008 Wurlitzer Foundation Residency Program, Jan 15 – Apr 8, Taos, NM
1998 New Mexico Governor’s Award for Individual Support of The Arts, Santa Fe, NM
1997 Regents Meritorious Service Medal from the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM
1997 Special Recognition Award of the University of New Mexico, Taos – Who’s Who In American Art, Who’s Who in The Southwest, Who’s Who In America


1987-2014 Professor Emeritus, Department of Art and Art History, University of New Mexico
1990-2002 Director, The Harwood Museum, Taos, NM
1964-1987 Professor, The University of New Mexico, Department of Art and Art History
1968-1971 Director, The University of New Mexico, University Art Museum
1964-1968 Assistant Director, The University of New Mexico, University Art Museum
1956-1964 Curator of Education, Pasadena Art Museum, Pasadena, California


1999 Organized endowment campaign for Harwood Museum. By 2001 the endowment held over two million dollars.
1995-98 Oversaw the renovation and expansion of The Harwood Museum from two to seven galleries.  Raised approximately one million dollars for the final capital improvements of one and a half million.  Supervised the reinstallation of the permanent collection.
1998 Member, Site Santa Fe Advisory Board
1998 Awards juror for The National Exhibition for American Watercolor IV, Taos, NM
1996 Spearheaded the founding of the Harwood Museum Alliance, a membership organization devoted to fundraising for the museum.
1995 Juror, Eleventh Annual Student Exhibition, College of Santa Fe, Santa Fe, NM
1994 Conceived and negotiated the gift by Agnes Martin of seven paintings to the Harwood Museum for a permanent gallery installation
1993 Invited artist, Monothon, College of Santa Fe, NM
1987-90 Board member, Taos Art Association
1986 Founding board member of the Contemporary Art Society, Albuquerque, NM
1977-84 Board member, Artspace Magazine, a Southwestern contemporary arts magazine.
1980 Designed and produced poster for National Endowment for the Arts, Visual Arts Program, Washington, DC
1976-78 Chairman, Visual Arts Grants Panel for the New Mexico Arts Division, Albuquerque, NM NM
1975 Served on Visual Arts Selection Panel for the National Endowment for the Arts, Washington DC
1974-78 Board member, International Folk Art Foundation, Santa Fe, NM
1973 Regional Consultant for The National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, DC
1973 One Person juror, Kansas Arts Biennial, Wichita Art Museum, Wichita, KS
1970 One Person juror, Arizona Annual, Phoenix Museum of Art, Phoenix, AZ
1970 Guest artist, Tamarind Institute, Albuquerque, NM
1960 Commissioned to paint a 16’ mural for Lytton Savings & Loan Bldg, Hollywood, CA
1959 Nominated for “New Talent in US” Award

CURATORIAL (selected)

  • The Harwood Foundation of The University of New Mexico/ Taos 1923-1993: History and Collection, Designed and co-authored this brief history and collection listing published on the seventieth anniversary of the Harwood Foundation.
  • Louis Ribak, The Late Drawings, The Harwood Museum, 1992, catalog for exhibition of thirty-six.
  • Melissa Zink, Journeys 1977-1990, 1990, Guest Curator for the Taos Art Association Exhibition of twenty works by Melissa Zink, catalog essay and design.
  • Creative Camera Magazine, August 1972, Luncheon on the Grass with Bob and Model.
  • Ilya Bolotowsky, Paintings and Columns, University of New Mexico Art Museum, 1970. Organized the first major exhibition of Bolotowsky’s works, including thirty-five paintings and five columns from the years 1957 through 1969. Exhibition traveled to four museums.


  • Melody Romancito, Review, Robert Ellis in Taos, Tempo: The Arts & Entertainment Magazine of The Taos News, October 5, 2000
  • Virginia L. Clark, Review, Many will miss Robert Ellis: Harwood Museum Director Looks Forward to Retirement, Tempo: The Arts & Entertainment Magazine of The Taos News, May 31 2001
  • James A. Moore, Robert M. Ellis/A Painter’s Space, Paintings and Works on Paper 1951-1990, University of New Mexico Art Museum catalog, 1991
  • Joanne Forman, Ellis Comes Home, The Taos News, March 28, 1991
  • Viewpoints, poster for benefit art auction, Department of Art and History, University of New Mexico, 1987
  • Spirit and Vision, Images of Ranchos de Taos Church, Museum of New Mexico Press, 1987
  • KNME-TV (public television), Artist of the Month, April 24” x 24” poster plus monthly program cover, 1985
  • Vivian Milfors, Review, Albuquerque Journal, December 6, 1981
  • Attitudes: Photography in the 1970’s, Santa Barbara Museum, Santa Barbara, CA, color slide insert in catalog, 1979
  • Reflections of Realism, catalog, Albuquerque Museum, 1979
  • Louise Lewis, Review, Artweek, Vol. 9, No. 36, October 28, 1978
  • Albuquerque Artists I, catalog, Albuquerque Museum, 1978
  • Jenny Lusk, Review, Albuquerque Journal, November 20, 1977
  • Southwest Biennial Catalog, Museum of Fine Arts, Santa Fe, NM 1976
  • John Gruen, Review, Soho Weekly News, June 12, 1975
  • Mary Jane Mayer, New Ways of Collage, Van Nostrand and Reinhold, pp. 66-71, 1973
  • Dean Wallace, Review, San Francisco Chronicle, May 24, 1964
  • Third Art Center Annual of California Painting and Sculpture, catalog, La Jolla Art Center, CA. 1964
  • Henry Hopkins, Review, Art Forum, Vol. 1, No. 7, 1962
  • Light, Space, Mass, catalog, for traveling exhibition, circulated by Western Association of Art Museums, 1962
  • Jules Langsner, Review, Art International, November 1961
  • Arts of Southern California, catalog, Long Beach Museum, 1958


2007 Barcelona, Bilbao, Madrid, Paris
1996 London and Scotland
1972 Holland, Belgium and Germany
1970 Holland, Belgium, Italy, Switzerland and France
1960-61 Lived and painted in Paris, France
1957 Germany (six weeks paid tour sketching for US Air Force), London and Paris
1948-50 Mexico City (lived and studied)