“A painting of a person can be descriptive, but for me it’s about all the things that make up a picture—the feelings, the brushstrokes—more than describing somebody” – Elizabeth Peyton
Elizabeth Peyton is considered one of the most influential painters working today. In the mid-1990s, she became a leader in contemporary painting’s return to figuration. Elizabeth Peyton’s small-scale paintings focus on still lifes and landscapes, but above all, on portraits: of friends, lovers, heroes, admirations, inspirations and fascinations. Through gestural brushstrokes of diluted oil paint and delicate mark making, her ever-expanding repertoire of recurring subjects, including Kurt Cobain, David Bowie, Marie-Antoinette and Barack Obama, are imbued with a distinct intimacy. Elizabeth Peyton paints both from life and from widely available photographs taken from books, magazines, record covers or music video stills, but also from her own private photos. Whilst Peyton’s work addresses notions of idolatry and obsession, it explores how art and mass media affect the viewer’s emotional and intellectual response to the person depicted. Solo exhibitions of Elizabeth Peyton‘s work have been held by institutions such as the National Portrait Gallery in London, the New Museum in New York, the Bonnefanten Museum in Maastricht and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Peyton was born 1965 in Connecticut.