Ellen Gallagher, born in 1965 in Providence, Rhode Island, currently resides and works in Rotterdam.
I recently had the opportunity to view her predominantly yellow artwork, „eXelento,“ at The Broad Museum in Los Angeles. Captured a video of the piece, beginning with close-up shots of its individual components. It featured heads adorned with playful additions:
Vanilla yellow hair styled in a 70s fashion, or sun rays and Greek architecture.
The helmets resembled those of alien. Others, adorned with masks, horns, crowns, and brains. All in these shades of yellow. Creating a soft and friendly atmosphere. A big number of faces and heads within the artwork, starting with, 1, 2, 3, there were almost 400 of them, arranged in a 32×12 grid, if my count serves me right.
There are related artworks, such as „AxME,“ which was featured in a previous article in „kolaj“ magazine. (https://kolajmagazine.com/content/content/articles/ellen-gallagher-tate/) The article emphasized the challenge of describing art, stating that much of what art conveys through images can be difficult, if not impossible, to convey adequately through words and language. Name it!
Now, does any connection exist between Ellen Gallagher’s work and Diego Velasquez, a historical artist she holds in high regard, she once said that he’s the artist who most deeply influences her? But, what at all, does it mean to be influenced by someone in the world of art? Is it akin to admiration, love in distance, or perhaps a significant source of inspiration that permeates an artist’s every work? I’m not an artist myself, but can guess, could write a scientific work about it .. And always as someone who works in the field of liberal arts, get the impression, and we talked about that at university a lot, you need both the old accepted scientific works about artworks and a new approach to it .. If you’re good in arguing, you might win ..
So, can we find any connection to historical artists in this painted sculpture, this sculptured painting? Enjoy delving into the past. What about ancient reliefs, characterized by repetition? Perhaps Ellen’s 2004-artwork represents a contemporary twist, infusing each head or face with unique elements.
Ellen is renowned for creating artworks that can be both captivating and unsettling. She is known for a type of humor that may not be immediately amusing, not amusing at all. So, is „eXelento“ humorous in its own way?
Is it humor or sarcasm that resonates with you?
Do you appreciate and feel moved by this artwork?
Soft yellow sculptural work. Newspaper prints. Pictures and words. And not only one piece, instead 384. You can have it all! If you’ve got time. Imagine spending just 10 seconds examining each image; it would take a full hour to appreciate this marvelous piece of art. A German hour, mind you, because I recently discovered that a German minute may have 60 seconds, unlike an American one. So, keep your watch handy or simply lose yourself in the moment.
Time remains an essential aspect, from the artists of ancient times to the contemporary artists of our Zeitgeist. Build a bridge!