Chris “Daze” Ellis: From Street Artist to Museum Collections


Today’s guest, Chris Daze Ellis, is a born-and-bred New York artist with a fascinating origin story. Although he began his prolific painting career in the gritty New York subways of the mid-70s, Daze is one of the few artists from that initial group to have successfully transitioned from the underground to the studio, then the galleries and even museums.

His first group show, “Beyond Words”, was held at the legendary Mudd nightclub in New York in 1981. Daze’s art showing alongside artists such as Jean Michel Basquiat and Keith Harding was only a hint of what was to come. From there, Daze’s paintings have found themselves adorning the private collections of Madonna and Eric Clapton, among others.

His work can be found in the permanent collections of such museums as The Museum of Modern Art in New York, The Brooklyn Museum, The Museum of the City of New York, The Groninger Museum in the Netherlands, and The Ludwig Museum in Aachen, Germany. Daze continues to live and work in New York City.

Alongside countless museum and gallery exhibitions, Daze has also completed many public art projects over the years. By partnering with students around the world, Daze helps kids tap into art as a way of expressing themselves and communicating with the outside world.

Daze’s monograph, DAZEWORLD: The Artwork of Chris Daze Ellis, is a stunning visual tour of his epic thirty-year career. Tune in today for this insightful conversation about how art can be a positive and uniting force in one’s life.

In This Episode, You’ll Learn:

  • How Daze first discovered writing on trains could be a unique artistic outlet.
  • Why New York was the muse for Daze’s first real art collection.
  • The importance of being able to let go of one’s art and enjoy its ephemeral nature.
  • How Daze gives back to students around the world through grand, collaborative mural projects.
  • Daze’s daily ritual, and why he avoids having just a “typical” day.

Mentioned in This Episode:

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Camp GLP is about connecting, playing, lighting up on a deeper, more meaningful level. One that bypasses the normal superficial yadda yadda yadda and makes a beeline to the soul. Come join us. 

Photo credit: Jeffrey Lin

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