The Highly Detailed Precarious Painted Cities of Amy Casey

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The cities of Amy Casey exist precariously.  Buildings tower, tilt, and balance about to topple.  Much like actual city life, the metropolis’ in Casey’s paintings can seem like a hard-fought existence bound by community.  Further tying her paintings with actual cities are the buildings that actually inhabit both worlds – amazingly, every single home and building in Casey’s paintings is based on one of her numerous photographs of actual structures.  In her statement, Casey says of her work:
“Cities are fascinating creatures that I am just beginning to scratch the surface of.  The work and organization that goes into a city’s creation and evolution, the constant shifting and adaptations, and the sometimes hidden history of these changes and a city’s dependence on civilian cooperation are things I like to think about.”

Also, check out a short documentary on Amy Casey here.

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Made With Color Presents: Justin Waugh Breaks Down Painting

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Justin Waugh painting

Justin Waugh painting

Beautiful/Decay has partnered with premiere website building platform Made With Color  to bring you exclusive artist features. Each week we join forces to bring you some of the most exciting artists and designers who use Made With Color to create their clean and sleek websites. Made With Color helps artists create gorgeous websites without any coding. This week we’re excited to bring you the work and website of Los Angeles painter Justin Waugh.

With a desire to break painting down to its fundemental components of color, line, form, and surface, Justin Waugh creates a restrictive set of criteria that has a rich dialogue with minimalism and post minimal abstraction.  Using those movements as a starting point, Waugh working to engage the language of  minimalism with a contemporary sensibility that is both familiar yet subversively fresh. Justin had this to say about this series:

“This series began as paintings that address the repetitive horizontal grid, a hallmark of minimalism, and the use of industrial materials. Instead of a consistent, mechanized application of paint there is evidence of a hand painted surface; the use of oil paint and graphite, traditional painting materials; and a bold use of color. As the series progressed I began working on handmade paper, further giving the work an organic quality that created an interesting tension with the rigidity of the pattern. I am also interested in the overall compositions being made up of repetitions of two inch bands of color, rendering them in a sense without focal point, and egalitarian in composition. I’m fascinated by the use of repeated forms and patterns, and how one can take a very simple gesture and scale it up into something greater than the sum of its parts. “

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Beached Whale Is Actually A Hyper-realistic Installation

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It would probably be prudent to begin by letting you know this whale is not real.  Rather, the whale is a highly-detailed site-specific installation and the “scientists are actors organized and created by a Belgian collective known as Captain Boomer.  The installation was on the banks of the river Thames and in conjunction with Greenwich + Docklands International Festival – an outdoor festival.  The installation (which pops up on various river banks throughout Europe) stir up and disrupt entire communities just as real beached whales do.  The collective sets out to educate communities on whale the beaching of whales and the larger issues tying humans to nature.  Regarding viewers’ unique reaction to their installation, Captain Boomer describes:

“During our beachings, we see an intensive interaction among the crowd. People address each other, speculate and wonder. They offer help and ask for information. The different layers of perception create funny games. Some audience members know it is a work of art but feed the illusion to other people.”

X-Ray Photographs Of Flowers Expose The Transient Magic Of The Everyday

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British photographer Nick Veasey uses an x-ray machine to discover the transient magic of everyday things from clothing to stuffed animals, but most beautifully– flowers. Although, the concept is simple, the effect is quite radiant: imagery blooming with intricate nuances, highlighted by surprising shades of light. The whole collection is fine reminder of that medium’s powerful science outside of the airport– that technology doesn’t just serve to protect, but how it also serves to expose.

Faig Ahmed Reimagines Traditional Azerbaijani Carpets

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With a serious understanding of classic carpet-making techniques, Azerbaijani sculptor Faig Ahmed is able to stretch, distort and reinvent an iconic symbol steeped in tradition and cultural significance. “The carpet is a symbol of invincible tradition of the East, it’s a visualization of an undestroyable icon,” Ahmed states, noting that the manipulation of the woven medium gives visual form to ideas he has relating to “destroying the stereotypes of tradition to create new modern boundaries.” The rug, as a medium, works well for Ahmed, helping to deploy a deeper message about the stretching, bending and restructuring of physical and political boundaries in the Middle East. His technical mastery is evident in the movements of each thread, and his generous use of color gives the work an overall vibrancy—perhaps hinting at the artist’s sense of optimism in a time of great uncertainty and turmoil.

Christo And Jeanne-Claude’s Massive Fabric-Accented Landscapes

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Christo and Jeanne-Claude wrap and accent their environments with millions of square feet of rope shroud and fabric. Their wrapped and accented installations recontextualize the objects and their surrounding spaces, asking the viewer to consider both the presence and absence of the wrapped objects and the perception of new landscapes. At once conceptually simple and physically difficult to bring to complete fruition, the new environments are breathtaking in their starkness and beauty. Their installations often consume years of commitment and devotion. Wrapped Trees were the outcome of 32 years of effort.

Dreamy Sculptures Based On Familiar Objects From Artists Home

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Canberra, Australia based artist Jacqueline Bradley creates artwork that is perhaps best described as dreamy – sleepily strange.  Her sculptural work is squarely based on familiar objects that recall a house and the home life inside.  Yarn, glasses, dinnerware all seem to diverge subtly but perceptibly from normal use.  In this way the sculptures seem more like playful memories of objects than the actual objects themselves.  Bradley’s work explores the home as a place and the way people engage with it.

Huge Paper Kite Installation By Jacob Hashimoto

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The installations of Jacob Hashimoto are at once huge and delicate.  Here, Hashimoto fills the gallery with hanging paper kites. Though the space is saturated with the kites, they seem to be nearly floating as a giant flock, weightless for a moment.  As is found often in his work, the kites appear to reference the natural world.  Some kites sway like an ocean with images of water printed on them.  Others are purely white and float in scattered bodies like clouds.  At times, the large flowing installation even resembles a school of fish. [via]