Maggie Ellis (b. 1991, Loganville, Georgia; works in New York. MFA Hunter College 2017, BFA SCAD 2014.) Ellis’ paintings are anthropological observations that are rooted in her rural Southern upbringing but now have grown to include her life in New York, up to and during the 2020 pandemic. An unflinching observationalist, Ellis’ subject matter oscillates between the pleasant and innocuous (on first glance, anyway) to the voyeuristic and disconcerting, like a close-up of an infected foot or a woman projectiling vomit. Ellis likewise commands her stylistic repertoire and painting technique to suit each composition, ranging from photorealistic precision to frenetic, Goya-esque strokes around some of her more grotesque depictions. Ellis explains that the current political climate has created division between her and the people she grew up with in rural Georgia. She describes her work as a way for her to stay curious about the beliefs and opinions of others rather than rejecting and removing herself from that culture.