Canadian artist Andre Ethier‘s oil paintings are rich with all the messiness of life. He seems to find and expose more beauty and meaning from the unsavory elements of life than the average person does from generic blue skies and roses. I remember catching some of his works in person a few years ago and each one just glowed with so much power — hobos and monsters leering and searching from behind syrupy glazes. And Ethier’s quasi still lifes, well, they’re practically wall-mounted explosives. See what I mean after the jump.
I stopped by Leon Reid IV‘s studio in Greenpoint to see what he’s been up to lately. He’s been pretty busy. Last month, he installed “100 Story House” a public art piece created in collaboration with Julia Marchesi. And he released a new sculpture series less than two weeks ago. On top of all of that, he’s in the midst of raising funds for “A Spider Lurks in Brooklyn”, his proposed project to put a giant spider between the cables of the Brooklyn Bridge during October of 2014 (you can get involved with the project here). So I was pretty psyched that he was able to make time to show me around. Leon’s been creating public art in some form or another for eighteen years now, and his studio was full of past projects and concept sketches.
Final mourning of the end of summer. Aerial photos of beaches and beach people from California-based photographer Gray Malin. These are part of a series entitled À La Plage, À La Piscine. Malin shot the pictures from the open door of a helicopter flying over beaches and pools from the U.S. to Brazil, to Australia. Reducing us to our tiniest, the photographs reveal patterns that would’ve been otherwise undiscovered. (via)
Moody, slightly surreal paintings from Swedish artist Markus Åkesson. Åkesson’s works touch on the quiet, interior relationship we have with death. But the artist doesn’t present death as the scary, violent experience that so many make it out to be, but as a peaceful, very natural phenomenon. And his use of animals and children works really nicely to heighten this impression. Åkesson is currently exhibiting work at the VIDA museum in Borgholm. (via)
Carolina Fontoura Alzaga is a multidisciplinary artist out of Los Angeles with a penchant for re-purposing castoff materials and exploring sociopolitical themes. She’s currently selling some chandeliers made from used bicycle chains at her Etsy page. You don’t even have to be into cycling to like these. The heavy chains almost give off a medieval vibe and they look like they give off some really nice, warm light. Looks like they’re being offered at some pretty affordable prices as well. (via)
Check out some amazing aerial shots of Iceland’s volcanic countryside from Russian photographer Andre Ermolaev. The intense heat from the volcanoes produces some really unique visuals. And Ermolaev’s bird’s eye view forces us to recall how majestic our planet really is. Not to get all preachy, but if we want to preserve visuals like these, we may have to alter our actions a little. (via)
Aartjan Venema is a Dutch illustrator with some really crazy ideas. Venema uses a lot of digital elements in his work but maintains a really nice aesthetic that evokes some of the brushwork characters and text elements of Raymond Pettibon’s drawings. He also packs a whole lot of narrative into one image. Nazi dinosaurs? Stonehenge murder mysteries? I’ll take it. (via)
In the Mexican city of Monterrey, where the over development of newly built suburbs affect peoples daily lives and customs, there is a large bridge spanning Highway 85. On that bridge Alejandro Cartagena pointed his camera down at the morning traffic. He was seeking and peeking into the backs of open trucks, where construction workers often pile together on their way to earn a living. Like commuters everywhere, they sleep, eat, read and talk on their way to work. Often they look up, and maybe they notice someone taking their picture.
The shape of the tall, narrow pictures mimics a long stretch of highway, and conjures up the journey’s forward motion. Lined up in rows, each pictures a different vehicle, a different load of human cargo, and truck after truck; they suggest the relentless drive to stay alive.