Artist and designer Haley Ann Robinson has a passion for exploring shape, color, line and simple forms—something that translates well into her hand-shaped wooden objects. She treats some of the smooth, angular sides of each object with a vibrant selection of colors, designed to highlight specific visual planes and grain patterns in each piece. Robinson pulls a great deal of inspiration from geometry and nature, resulting in objects that display a playful engagement with shape, medium and surface.
Ceramicist Matt Wedel continues to make strong headway in the gallery world while maintaining an impressive creative autonomy in Athens, Ohio, where he builds, glazes, and fires each larger than life sculpture on his own terms . . . by himself . . . without assistants.
“Sheep’s Head,” his most recent exhibit at LA Louver, proves to be a wonderful example of what a little focus, patience, and isolation can create. Each cumbersome piece collects to convey a vibrantly glossy world: renderings of a twisted contemporary animal kingdom and its surrounding vegetation.
Of this particular series, David Pagel notes, “Cookie jars come to mind, as do centerpieces for fancy dinners, elaborate candle holders, ships’ figureheads and decorative figurines. So do works by Picasso, Botero and Baselitz, as well as ancient Greek, Roman and Etruscan statuary, Cylcadic sculpture, Olmec totems and carved saints from medieval churches.”
From everyday objects to art history and human artifacts, Wedel’s healthy dose of contemporary dreaming bends the familiar into something imaginatively powerful. On view, we encounter angelic mutants who have been hardened over time, perhaps altered by a sorcerer’s wand or depicted to honor one final futuristic freeze. Likewise, while roaming the floor, we meet flora and fauna which structurally blooms in a childlike manner, but not without a bitter taste of science gone awry with color dripping and drooping.
Piece after piece, a creative storybook of bright possibility or dark youthful mystery unravels, and this is exactly why we strive to look deeper- it’s a hoping to engage not only with the work, but with our own innermost children.
Check out the video after the jump to see the artist at work and meet his 3-year-old inspiration.
The work of artist Ted Lawson reveals a persistent interest in the human body. Though his work is attractive to look at, or at least hard to pull away from, there is clearly a deeper fear being expressed. His art investigates processes related to the physical body such as growth, its needs, its decay and death. Really, these sculptures are physical representations of modern psychological concerns. The tenuous relationship between the body and the mind has been a highly scrutinized theme throughout much of contemporary art. Lawson’s work, though, has a way of striking an especially carnal chord.
César Biojo defines his work as the controlled result of multiple accidents; the coexistence of two opposites: creation and destruction. Biojo starts with the figurative— constructing a character—and when he feels it is perfect he destroys it with the abstraction of extra paint and spatula rips and drags. The result is a perfect imperfection: a focus on the fragility and ephemerality of the human existence that asks if we were perfect for a moment? And then reassures you yes… but that moment has passed.
Biojo’s process is also outlined in this short video: César Biojo • His Work
Superstition aside, these sculptures made from shards of mirrors were created by artist Lilibeth Cuenca Rasmussen. If you look at the photographs carefully, in addition to the sculptures a person in a similar mirror-suit moves throughout the gallery. The gallery also projects a video for this exhibit featuring a person in this mirror-suit moving through commercial spaces in South East Asia and Denmark. It is interesting noticing the virtually universal nature of mannequins. Rasmussen brings out that they allow us to imagine the way clothes will look on us, but on a deeper level we project what we want to be on them. Similarly, these sculptures literally reflect those gazing at them. [via]
Floating high above the sky Patricia Piccinini’s Skywhale hot air balloon is a thing of wonder. Commissioned by The Centenary Of Canberra the massive flying sculpture that is a cross between a turtle, breasts and prehistoric fish will be making the rounds in Australia during 2013.
Here’s what creative director of the COC had to say about this project:
“Observing Canberra’s continuing love of the spectacle of hot air balloons , each autumn gracing the airspace over the national capital, I wanted to offer this highly visible ‘canvas’ to an Australian artist as a Centenary of Canberra commission. Patricia Piccinini is one of Australia’s most successful ‘sculptors’, her work seen in major collections in Australia, and a survey show broke all attendance records for the Tasmanian Museum and Gallery: she has had recent exhibitions in Nashville, Istanbul and London. Her highly imaginative work invites us every time to think about the human condition, and it was this relationship with the very concept of ‘life on Earth’ that made me think of her. Many special shape balloons have started to replicate characters or animals, but they are mostly caricatures and in the realm of kitsch, rather than art.
To my delight, Patricia was immediately responsive to the idea of her work in a new form, and insisted that it would not be a novelty, but a continuation of her ouevre and its years of investigation into the way life has evolved. This is exactly what the new work is, and we are so proud to have been able to find the resources to help this great artist make it happen. That Patricia was educated in Canberra, also makes this a celebration of the fine talent that the national capital has, and continues to produce.” (via)
Watch three fantastic videos with the artist in her studio as well as footage of the Skywhale in flight after the jump!
Wyatt Kahn’s wall sculptures are built from a series of stretcher panels and raw canvas beautifully pieced together to make one collaged structure. The crevices and peeking back wall help create compositional depth, captivating the eye, revealing clean and simple, yet geometrically intricate work, which is devoted to the complex juxtaposition of space more so than color.
Of Kahn’s art, Sam Cornish writes, “Broadly the type of illusion Kahn employs is one that comes after the reduction of minimalist painting. The flat, object quality of each part is in one sense simply accepted. There is no hint of the surface being broken, of a window open to an atmospheric or light filled space beyond (however shallow).”