One of New York’s finest Pop Realist painters, Ellis (b. 1970) is well known for his technically virtuosic paintings. His dynamic representational technique uses pop culture iconography to explore various issues emerging from contemporary consumerism, often favoring the depiction of single objects rendered with near fetishistic focus.
Ellis builds on this theme of untapped artistic capital by sounding a warning call. The artist applies his Pop Realism style to underscore the profound impact of natural elements on infrastructure built long ago, and offers imaginative solutions to the issues that the global community faces. The works illustrate the ability of artists to incite reactions and facilitate dialogue by presenting powerful images.
Previous series have investigated the death of print media and the damaged, transitory beauty of American popular culture, featuring consumer detritus such as torn magazines, cigarette lighters, knives, broken high‐heeled shoes, and crashed cars. Following the tradition of Pop‐art masters, Ellis employs a wide range of media, including silk screens, wallpaper, light boxes and mixed media installations. The colorful, satirical works communicate narrative with concision and economy, and frequently feature wordplay.
Born in Washington D.C., Ellis was raised in various cities within the United States. In 1989, the artist moved to New York City to study at the prestigious School of Visual Arts, where he excelled in realism. Following his graduation, Ellis lived and worked in downtown New York, cultivating his aesthetic by immersing himself in the vibrant subculture of the city’s nightlife.
Ellis has exhibited extensively throughout the U.S. in addition to several international shows. These include exhibitions at the AC Institute, the Gershwin Hotel, the Studio @ 620, SoHo House, American Fine Arts and the Lexington Armory. Ellis’ works are held in private collections in Tokyo, Rome, Seoul, Moscow, Singapore, Abu Dhabi, Auckland (New Zealand), Los Angeles, Chicago, Miami, New York, Dallas, and Philadelphia.