Ellen Lanyon (1926 - 2013)

Ellen Lanyon, Mystery of the Pleiades, 2009, 36 x 48 inches, acrylic on canvas (
Ellen Lanyon, Mystery of the Pleiades, 2009, 48 x 36 inches, acrylic on canvas (courtesy of the estate of the artist)

Jason Foumberg remembers painter Ellen Lanyon (1926 – 2013).

Foumberg recalls that Lanyon "was more than willing to open the encyclopedia of Chicago art history that resided in her head and relate its content—but when it came to talking about her own art, she liked to keep things a little mysterious. Like the Victorian-era gadgets and contraptions that she collected and depicted in her paintings, only Ellen knew how they worked; only Ellen knew what they really meant... Lanyon’s life story is a microcosm of Chicago art in the mid-twentieth-century. She was a painter, printmaker, teacher, painting conservator, activist, feminist."