American artist Ellen Gallagher was born in Rode Island and studied fine arts in Boston. Her most famous pieces are her grid-like collages of magazines grouped together into larger pieces. Examples of these are eXelento (2004), Afrylic, (2004), and DeLuxe, (2005). Each of these works contains as many as or more than 60 prints employing techniques of photogravure, spit-bite, collage, cutting, scratching, silkscreen, offset lithography and hand-building. Themes related to race are evident in her work, using pictographs, symbols, codes and repetitions. "Sambo lips" and "bug eyes," references to the Black minstrel shows, are often scattered throughout the works. Certain characters are also used repeatedly, such as the image of the nurse or the "Pegleg" character that sometimes populate her page‘s iconography. Some of her pieces may explicitly reference the issue of race while also having a more subtle undercurrent related to race.
In 1995, Gallagher's work was exhibited at the Whitney Biennial and the Venice Biennale in 2003. She is based in Rotterdam and New York City and is considered the number 4 most important living artist in the Netherlands.