Artist Spotlight : Elly Nor Suria


Born and raised in Terengganu, Elly Nor Suria (@ellynorsuriamz) has shown a passion for art from an early age. Although formally trained in the Fine Arts, Elly is happy to address herself as a modern naive artist (naive artist, by definition, is a form of art made by people who lack the formal background).

Artist Elly Nor Suria

After several attempts in trying out different techniques and methods of art, Elly is able to incorporate mixed media such as reverse painting, fabric collage, engraving and relief surfaces into her practice.

Artworks by Elly Nor Suria

Her breakthrough success at the Art Decor 2017 exhibition where most of her works have been sold has given her the boost to began to see a bright future in this direction. She took the time to make connections and learn from senior artists along the way - the next opportunity comes from the people you meet!

Her style of work is very much pleased by local publishers that they decided to commission Elly to create picture books. Kampung was published in 2017 followed by Bangau Oh Bangau, a children’s picture book in 2018. The book has then been exhibited at the 2018 Bologna Children Book Festival.

Purchase online on SilverFishBooks and OYEZ! Books for Children (These links are NOT associated with Artesque)

“Art gives me the strength to remain close to the community by running workshops and art classes for children.”

Her suburb upbringing has greatly influenced Elly’s style development. The interpretation of that life is largely seen in her whimsical form of art. After having children of her own, It comes to no surprise that motherhood changes her approach to making art. Still very widely recognised for the use of vibrant colours in her work, Elly spoke to us that she hopes to convey the idea of happiness by incorporating hues and playful elements. She works out spontaneous idea before developing further into it, all comes from her daily sketches. Even though Elly acknowledges the struggle of being a full-time artist, she remains yet hopeful.

Most of her work have a sense of community to it, especially for Rumah Kotak series where houses are drawn close to one another, likely to depict that of Kampung house in the suburb area where she came from.

Rumah Kotak, Vol.3 (Bintang - Bintang di Langit) by Elly Nor Suria


When asked about some of the greatest lessons in her career journey as an artist, Elly did not miss out her entire family in the picture (oh to give credits where it’s due!) She told us the 3 things she learned would include:

  1. Taking action: If you want to change your life, you have to be willing to initiate movement. Just go and do it!

  2. Greatest love of all: Always appreciate your loved ones - they are the reason that you are who you are now.

  3. Be humble!


" Truly in a difficult time like this, art is what keep us entertained.”

Elly has great work ethics when it comes to documentation. She always makes sure to keep a journal for her daily sketches.

“I’ve whipped up a few drawings using water colour throughout the MCO period. I had to make do with limited resources but it was nice to be able to produce something! I did plenty of sketches daily in a handmade book of my own - A few of them are a part of CORONA SERIES work that I made to visualise the good things you can find from this pandemic. I’m quite happy to see a lot of them have been sold in such a short amount of time!

Artworks during COVID-19 pandemic by Elly Nor Suria

Elly hopes her works will reach more people around the world. More on her practice and work can be found on Instagram (@suriaart).

312 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All