Born in Oslo, Norway, Lise Ellingsen moved to New York to earn a BFA at School of Visual Arts in Graphic Design. After working in the advertising industry, equally adept in digital, print and TV/video storytelling, and earning multiple awards for over 15 years, she graduated with a Master of Fine Arts from Vermont College of Fine Arts in 2021.
Ellingsen’s work is focused on the female position in the relationship to nature and the spirituality of nature and animals. She uses humor as a tool to overcome the existential angst she experiences in western culture, a culture detached from nature. In her body of work, she expresses a strong search for meaning through sculpture, drawing, animation and video performance.
In recents projects she features ethereal imagery, stunning and austere landscapes to reflect her take on commercial and pop culture through her Norwegian heritage, stretching back to the Viking Age, when the Norse Mythology flourished.
Ellingsen attended art residencies at the Small Projects Art Residency in Norway, the Fine Art Work Center print studio, Michael David Artist Residency and RUC Residency in Italy. She has shown her work in New York such as the Scandinavia House Gallery, Prince Street Gallery, NYC Crit Club Group Show and the Couture Fashion Show in Manhattan.
She is the founder of “Artists for Animals,” a series of global exhibitions where emerging artists donate work to fundraise for selected animals in need. In 2011, Elingsen created a T-shirt design company, BlondesMakeBetterTshirts.com, with her quirky feminist T-shirts selling been selling globally in stores such as Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue, and been published globally in magazines such as Nylon Japan, Elle Singapore and Seventeen Magazines in the USA.
I am a Norwegian-born New Yorker using humor to overcome existential angst and imperfection by creating art based on Norse mythology mixed with US pop-culture.
Reflecting on the world we live in, I see the irony in how we have come so far with science and education but are still on the brink of extinction due to greed and ignorance. In my mind, it might have been better to worship animals and nature the way people in the North of Europe did during the Iron age and Viking era.
In an attempt to connect to both my heritage and nature, I reconstruct stories from Norse Mythology and Norwegian fairy tales. One piece is the creation of Cosmos, where the first cow, Audumbla, was nourished by licking the ice. By doing so, she created and uncovered the gods within the ice. The gods then created humans and the world.
These stories make more sense to me than the meaningless logic behind our behavior and belief systems in the western world today.
I juxtapose my heritage and nature with my life in NYC by combining 3D scanned hand-made clay characters into 3D animated and printed sculptures with video performance, archaic stop-animation and smartphone augmented reality applications,
All of which is a reflection of my art practice with drawing and clay sculpture, mixed with a digital ecosystem inspired by my commercial background as an advertising Art Director in NYC.
By using humor, I am embracing the imperfect performer as I am incorporate myself into these pre-existing fables, stories and roles where men traditionally were the protagonists and antagonists, transforming the process into one of personal empowerment.
The characters in my body of work belong in a distorted parallel universe with its own new mythic iconography. They reflect the existential angst of my own and society’s disconnection with nature and embody a child-like fever dream where nothing is outside of nature.
Who are these ‘Gods From The Ice’
Lets hear from Lise Ellingsen…
A big thank you for the support we have received so far. we are proud of present another solo show exhibit hosted and sponsored by Arts to Hearts Project.
I am truly grateful to our beautiful community for making what Arts To Hearts Project a safe & flourishing space for artists.
If you like this exhibit and what we do please don’t forget to share this and help us spread the word.It will truly mean a lot to us and help us reach a wider audience.
Until, we meet again.
Sending my best to you always x
- Charuka Arora, Founder Arts To Hearts Project