"I went to Pratt Institute in New York City from 1956-60. Studied graphic design. Thought I liked it. Got out. Got a job at the General Motors Tech Center in Detroit, and after 3 months I realized I hated working with people. (Laughter) That in fact I didn’t like graphic design. And, I didn’t’ like solving other peoples problems.
So went to Europe, went through the Army. Got out, and kind of got into illustration backwards, meaning that I was looking for something that wasn’t a full-time job. I was looking for something that I could do alone. And so a friend of mine was freelancing, and that’s how I got in. It was an attempt to run away from everything else, I guess."
The paintings and drawings of Marshall Arisman have been widely exhibited, both internationally and nationally. His work may be seen in the permanent collections of the Brooklyn Museum, at the National Museum of American Art and the Smithsonian Institution, as well as in many private and corporate collections.
Chairman of the M.F.A. degree program at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, Marshall Arisman was the first American invited to exhibit his artwork in mainland China. His series, “Sacred Monkeys,” appeared at the Guang Dong Museum of Art in April 1999.