Blog Menu

Studio Sunday: Chris Ofili

An aerial photo of Chris Ofili working on a very large painting in his studio


Our Studio Sunday artist today is Chris Ofil. Chris is an artist perhaps best known for his paintings working with elephant dung. His overall practice, however, is much more varied.


While not all of Ofili’s works are this large, it’s amazing to see the creation of this one in progress, with the help of a large warehouse space and several assistants. The painting here, a backdrop for a performance by the Royal Ballet in 2012, takes up most of the floor space in the studio. In addition to the sets, Ofili designed the costumes for the performance. The set designs were based on specific works by Titian. Ofili’s flowing, abstracted figural style works well to emulate the movement in Titian’s works while keeping to a more contemporary aesthetic.


I love the step ladder placed on the edge of the painting, allowing Ofili to periodically see the whole painting to check his progress. Ofili completed much of the painting himself, using large brushes and rollers on long handles so that he could stand up while working. The walls of the space are lined with shelves, probably containing supplies of every sort. On the other side of the room there are several tables, probably used for drawings and plans, or to prep materials.


Ofili was born in Britain but now resides in Trinidad. His home studio is much smaller and houses his regular sized paintings. 

[image source]

About the author

Dallas Jeffs Art Writer

Dallas Jeffs is the Editor of Artist Run Website's blog. They hold a degree in Critical and Cultural Practices from Emily Carr University of Art and Design, as well as a certificate in Technical Writing from BCIT. Dallas has a passion for speaking and writing about art, and sharing that interest with others. In their studio practice they are an illustrator and budding tattoo artist, but they consider themselves a writer foremost. If you like art, books and culture with a science fiction twist, check out Dallas' personal blog, HappySpaceNoises or their art on Instagram.

Read more of Dallas' posts

Easily build your art website

and focus your time on making art.


Try free for 30 days. No payment required.