Maggie Ellis

Region: Northeast

City / State: New York, NY

 Referencing 16th century Northern European painters Bruegel and Bosch, I depict compositions that are filled with people in the city. These works contain both of the artists’ trademark humor and horror—without the dragons. I create a sense of high speed and energy by using line, psychedelic color, and light, all of which function together to draw the viewer into the collective mood.

The figures in my work are born from fleeting moments of observation that I experience while walking in New York City. Pulling specific details from memory and utilizing a variety of painting techniques, I paint each figure uniquely, while simultaneously considering the inner psyche of the individual and their own experiences. Living in the city means much of one’s life occurs in public—the only privacy is in one’s thoughts. I use painting as a vehicle to capture those private, inner spaces and feelings that are often only visible on the face.