Olaf Breuning‘s The Art Freaks, is a group of color photographs transposing the signature styles of seminal 20th-century artists into prosaic body painting. If the manners in which Breuning’s subjects have been painted are not immediately identifiable, then titles like Andy, Frieda, and Piet confirm their references. Stemming from the artist’s recent investigation into his idiosyncratic relationship with modern and contemporary art, the larger than life-sized prints of elaborately painted bodies, which comprise The Art Freaks, conflate the tropes of so-called high and low artistic techniques as they discuss notions of kitsch, cliché, and reproduction.
As Breuning humorously attempts to imitate Takashi Murakami’s character Kiki (Takashi ) or the mounting release of Edvard Munch’s The Scream (1893) in Edvard (2011), he also mimics street performers who paint their bodies to transform into unique characters for the amusement, and pocket money, of passers-by; a tantamount treatment of craft, medium, and cultural signifiers that pervades Breuning’s multifarious oeuvre. Whether through his drawings, sculptures, or well-known website, the specific brand of pastiche Breuning employs in his work is a decidedly indiscriminate one that draws on everything from the Easter Bunny to Andy Warhol’s Marilyns.
Both humorous and uncanny, The Art Freaks not only questions our relationship to the enduring artworks Breuning choses to reference in his series, but also to the reproductions and consumable patina through which most of us experience these artists’ works and their distinctive aesthetics. (via davids sketchbook)
If you want to see more work by Olaf Breuning we recommend Beautiful/Decay Magazine Issue: Y which includes a very nice feature on the artist.
Dutch designer Yoni Lefevre’s series Grey Power has the simple aim of honoring our old and wise grandparents in a quirky, fun, and imaginative way. Using children drawings of their grandparents Lefevre transforms the hilariously bizarre drawings into charming and playful photographs that depicts grandparents as active and fun heros.
About the project Lefevre states:
“We are living in a rapidly ageing society. A majority regards this as a negative development. Older people are perceived as standing on the sideline, having lost their independence. But I see the great value this generation can offer. For ‘Grey Power’ I used drawings made by children of their grandparents, to create an image boost for this generation. Children do not regard their grandparents as grey and withered, but as active human beings who add color to their lives. Their fresh perspective can contribute towards a more nuanced and positive view on the composition of our society.”
We at Beautiful/Decay abosolutely love this project as it is proof that sometimes a simple concept can pack a powerful (and hilarious) punch. (via designboom)
The good folks at portfolio site builder Made With Color have teamed up with Beautiful/Decay yet again to bring you exclusive artist features. Each week we team up to bring you some of the most exciting artists and designers working today who use Made With Color to create their clean and sleek websites. Website builder Made With Color doesn’t just help artists create minimal and mobile/tablet responsive websites but allows them to do so in a few minutes without having to touch a line of code.This week we are happy to share the work of talented artist and long time B/D friend Terence Hannum.
Terrence Hannum has always been consumed by music. When Terence isn’t in the studio creating his next work of art he can be found releasing zines, designing and releasing limited edition vinyl, and playing in his acclaimed minimalist black metal band Locrian. So it should come as no surprise to discover that Terrence’s artwork also explores the world of music. Using the magnetic tape found in cassettes as raw material, Hannum creates glossy and lustrous paintings that explore the world of minimalism and geometry.
Hannum states about this body of work:
“Typically one does not engage with the material of the cassette. Unless it was being eaten by a tape player, the average consumer never gazed upon its reflective spool. To this point most media requires a certain precious handling of it, the CD, DVD and LP require the listener to hold only the edge. Perhaps speaking to the ubiquity of the digital file these days, the MP3, FLAC, WAV and others have no real handling instructions. I want to focus on the surface. Hence, everything is the surface and in my pieces I try to construct a quiet void.”
Photographer and Indiana University Northwest professor Jennifer Greenburg has been gathering vintage negatives for years. In her work Revising History, Greenburg appropriates these black and white images by digitally inserting herself as a main character, mimicking the gestures of the moment and the clothing of the period. By circumventing someone else’s photographs and calling them her own, Greenburg exhibits the innately false nature of memory and the family snapshot.
I think a lot of artists collect old photographs as there is a sort of mystery and unknown to them. What made you decide to insert yourself into someone else’s memories?
“When I look at someone else’s life though the lens of someone else’s camera, I create my own stories. I have done this as long as I can remember. Usually when someone shows you their photographs, they cannot help but narrate the images. I ignore that narration. Instead, I make up a fantasy in my own mind. I idealize everything– becoming quite nostalgic– even if the subjects in the photos are completely unknown to me. I prefer a wistful interpretation. Photography is an interpretation of what is in front of the lens. Yet, as a culture, we rarely acknowledge that. We still believe that what we see in a photograph is truthful.
“The fantasy of all photographs is what I am commenting on through my work. By placing myself in a time and place that could not possibly be real, I address the concept that the lens does not hold much, or any, truth.”
You may have heard us mention our favorite website builder before : Made With Color. Well they’re at it again, adding new templates and new gallery styles so that artists and creative types everywhere can have a simple and beautiful way to showcase their talent.
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when captured from the side, you can see how the individual layers of paint appear out of the white surface.
Swiss photographer Fabian Oefner’s latest “Orchid” series of paint actions depicts the ephemeral nature of gravity and fluid paint, frozen in time. In each image Oefner captures a fleeting moment with his camera which appear to look like sculptural floral blooms when in fact they are explosions of paint set into motion by gravity.
In his unique process Oefner filled a tank with several layers of different colors of liquid paint with the top layer being either black or white. Then, a sphere was thrown into the paint. As the falling object splashed into the tank, the paint was forced upwards, shaping the individual layers of paint into a blossom-like structure.
“Orchid” is about preserving ephemeral beauty. Photographed with high speed devices, these images capture structures of sublime elegance, which appear only for a fraction of a second before disappearing beneath the surface again. (via designboom)
It’s time for our weekly exclusive artist feature in partnership with premiere website builder Made With Color. Each week we join forces to bring you some of the most exciting artists and designers working today who use Made With Color to create their clean and sleek websites. Made With Color is a website builder that helps artists create gorgeous websites and allows them to do so in a few minutes without having to touch a line of code.This week we are happy to share the work and website of Evelyn Henriquez.
The Water Box series was conceived by Evelyn Henriquez as a further exploration of the body, specifically the female form, portrayed in a moment of struggle and perhaps transformation where the lines between fear, anxiety, comfort and resolution become blurred. This initial idea translated into images of an adult woman confined to a 48″ x 15″ x 17″ fish tank. In each instance, the model was left to reconcile herself with the water, the tank, and ultimately with her own body. The resulting images capture this process; a psychological, emotional, and physical state that, though under the watchful eye of the camera lens, magnifies the isolated, insulated, and at times meditative state of each model.
Art meets commerce in this video directed by the legendary Joe Pytka. Pytka, a cinematographer, director and film maker was so inspired by New York-based artist Nate Lowman’s Just One Eye project with Converse he was inspired to create a short filmed that embodied the spirit of the project.
In the video, the viewer is welcomed into an enigmatic scene with a disembodied eyeball, blood and dimly lit hallways. Something sinister and grim is afoot and then we meet our one-eyed protagonist. It leaves the viewer thinking, just what is going on here? What’s going on is a collaboration between artist Nate Lowman and Converse to make a custom Chuck Taylor shoe. Lowman has cut one of his paintings (depicting a copy of Willem de Kooning’s 1954 portrait of Marilyn Monroe) into as many pairs of unique high-top Chuck Taylors as possible.
The great thing about these collaborations is that it exposes a whole new audience to art and allows them to incorporate it into their every day lives. Lowman’s work has been described by New York Times chief art critic as “down-and-out excursions into collage, graffiti and appropriation.” Lowman’s first critical acclaim came about as a result of a show with P.S.1. He has also collaborated with brands like Supreme to create exclusive products. Each pair of Chuck Taylors from the Just One Eye: Nate Lowman collaboration is a unique piece of art in and of itself, a fragment of a whole. Everyone who owns a pair of this collection will be part of this unique part of Converse history.