ELLE can be considered as one of the top touring street artists. She creates stories by collaging disparate images: powerful females, flora and fauna, classical paintings juxtaposed with pop-culture and high fashion imagery, revealing a purposefully designed messages to the world.Vroom & Varossieau Gallery sat down with ELLE to talk about her recent and upcoming activities.
First of all, how are you and what have you been up to (art wise?)
Hi! I’m doing great, thanks! I couldn’t be more excited to be back on the road traveling for work, and to back in the Netherlands! I am on a little tour currently painting for a festival in Florida, painting for this amazing museum project at Kunstlinie in Almere, then off to Bayreuth, Germany where I am doing a collaboration with Liebesbier brewery and creating a label for them, and then collaboration with my friend Hera from Herakut in Berlin. From there I’ll head back to the states to work on a bunch of private and public commissions-so it’s fair to say I’m quite busy at the moment- which I’m happy about!
In 2021 you did a lot of impressive murals, which one is dearest to you?
Hmm… I would say to date that the Ruth Bader Ginsberg mural was one of the most meaningful pieces that I’ve had the opportunity to create- but this was at the end of 2020. 2021 was of course in the midst of covid- but I painted my largest mural to date- at 10,000 square feet. This project took me two months- and I learned a lot. I think the projects I enjoy most are always the ones I learn and grow from- and for this huge one I had to learn how to use a paint gun and cover huge swaths of wall… so that was cool.
The street art exhibition Shapeshifters is coming up February 5th. What can the visitors expect from you?
I am painting a mural in one of the beautiful gallery niches overlooking the water. It’s really an incredibly impressive museum- both the exhibition itself and the space. I’m super honored to partake in this museum exhibition with such greats as Keith Haring, Lady Pink and Futura.
Shapeshifters is filled with a huge variety of street artists. Who are you looking forward to working together with?
There are a bunch of great women in this show: Micky (Mick La Rock), Lady Pink and more- but also to be shown alongside Keith Haring, Richard Hambelton and Kaws is pretty amazing!
You are a very familiar face for the people that watch our gallery closely. How and when did the partnership with Vroom & Varossieau start?
I love the folks at Vroom and Varossieau- firstly they’re wonderful people, always very generous and have a super great sense of humor! I first met Olivier when he arranged for me to be in a Streetart TV show in Ibiza. We have worked on many projects since then- painting the Edel Restaurant in Amsterdam, exhibiting at fairs, etc. It’s always a great pleasure to work with them!
We saw you working together with the innovative textile creators from BYBORRE. What did you create together and can we expect more in the future?
Yes, my great friend David Gensler, who started the brand Vanish, introduced me to Borre. BYBORRE has started a platform called Create where they invite artists to collaborate with them to create 3-D textiles. It’s really an incredible opportunity and process. I’m super excited to be working with such an innovative and amazing brand. The sample I went to pick up a few days ago at their studio was made 100% out of recycled bottles, and yet it is a gorgeous blanket/tapestry with 3-dimensional aspects- it’s mind blowing really. This is only my first sample and I look forward to collaborating more with them in the future, yes!
What are your plans for 2022?
I hope to move onto even more large scale projects- and am hoping to move into the realm of 3-D with some sculpture. This will be alongside traveling lots and painting many murals of course! I love to travel and paint, so I have a hard time turning those opportunities down!
It is always great to catch up with ELLE and to hear what she is up to, and as you can see, it is a lot! We are very excited for ELLE’s work in 2022 and to see the result of the mural at Shapeshifters (opening February 5, 2022). Make sure to follow ELLE and Vroom & Varossieau Gallery on Instagram to stay updated!