Brooklyn-based artist Elizabeth Insogna paints a world of goddesses and chimerical spirits set in vibrantly-colored natural landscapes and misty realms between dreaming and waking.

She does so by making full use of water-based mediums (often ink, watercolor, and acrylic), applying the colors in thin, transparent washes. Hues of crimson, gold, turquoise, and cerulean blue glow from within as they spread over one another. This fluid blending and overlaying, of both line and color, seems to have its counterpart in the fantastical metamorphoses that are being undergone by the figures she paints.

When visiting Insogna’s studio and speaking with her it was clear to me that the driving narrative behind the work was her own conception of Shakti, the Sacred Feminine, and all its guises in the universe.

Her paintings make reference to the historical goddesses from across many cultures and centuries, while at the same time reinterpreting and revivifying the familiar archetypes. In some works I recognized figures that looked like Ishtar or Artemis, while in others I saw female entities that may be wholly from Insogna’s own vision.

One outstanding painting in her studio–an untitled work–showed two female forms highlighted in cadmium red, each transforming into a variety of animals and blending into each other; their limbs, flailing like scarves caught in the wind, twisted into rams and birds.

The longer I contemplated such magic-based scenes in Insogna’s work, the more I sensed their power having come as much from inner, personal experiences as from the epics of historical mythology. (Alessandro Keegan)

To see more of Insogna’s work, visit her website here: