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The line between humor and pity is thin. It is the humor, and at times the ridiculous, that inspires and surfaces in my work. In my art I tell short stories informed by strong waves of feeling in my life. In the composition I use melodramatic tools of movement and stillness, gestures and attitudes, lights and shades. I have adopted theatrical lighting technique to express the inaccuracy of memory. My themes are of the intimate inner worlds, the utter indifference and extreme self-absorption. The characters do not shy from grotesque and satirical exaggerations, and they can also be presented at an elevated state in celebration of the individual.


In my practice I rely on my sketches, photos and the emotional memories that left an imprint on me at the time of inspiration. I am focusing on the essence of the character by taking them out of their environment and placing them in a suggestive, timeless place. I engage in as little detail as necessary to share my stories as a result my work encompasses abstract shadow-like impressions to idealized realism.


The surface of my works carries my artist-presence of creation. When painting I embrace the physical quality of the paint; the guided marks left by strokes of palette knives and brushes are responsible for the painting’s vibrant presence. In my drawings the hard pencil marks attract the viewers to step closer to see the detail, thus breaking the limit of personal space and symbolically exposing my intimate self.


Zsófia Ötvös has been a practicing artist for 20 years. Her work has been exhibited nationally at the Zhou Brother’s Center, Merchandise Mart, Woman Made Gallery at the Betty Rhymer Gallery, in Chicago, and at the Chelsea Art Museum, New York, NY, and internationally at the Fortessa de Basso in Florence, at Koller Gallery in Budapest, and as a youth at the Centre Pompidou, in Paris.

Zsófia is a 4 time recipient of the Chicago Arts Assistant Program Grant, and was one of 12 featured artist during the Chicago Artist Month in 2008 and twice at the Illinois Artisan’s Program. She has been reviewed in print in Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Suntimes and at Artscope and paste magzines online.

Zsófia gained her studio training in Budapest, at Studio 91, and earned her BA degree in Art and Theater at North Central College, while taking classes at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Zsófia grew up next to her mother’s tapestry loom, which became the base to her art. Currently Zsófia is based in Chicago, but also resides in Atlanta and Budapest. Besides her fine art studio practice, Zsófia is an accomplished makeup artist for film and television

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