Tate Ellington is a self-taught artist. He was born and raised in Mississippi, but has spent the last 16 years of his life in Brooklyn, NY and Los Angeles, CA. His primary medium is oil paint.
My work begins with anxiety and the ways in which isolation is both social and self-imposed. It’s sometimes physical, my subjects tend to be on their own in vast spaces; but even in a crowd, they rarely interact. Retreat, however, doesn’t rescue you from observation. This feeling of surveillance is rooted in my Southern, religious upbringing, and it is, by definition, reciprocal. I want my paintings to feel like looking in a mirror, or confronting a photographer while being photographed. My subjects look like you and at you. You have interrupted them, intruding on their story.