Photographer Tommy Kha, a 2013 graduate of Yale’s MFA program, will not kiss you back. In his project, Return to Sender, Kha documents himself receiving a kiss from strangers, friends, lovers, acquaintances, and not returning it. To what do we owe this visual pleasure and physical discomfort? These images of Kha’s bewildered, open eyes while his malleable body is taken, touched, and grabbed at another’s whim conjures up an amalgam of emotions, the least of which is our own discomfort.
Why? The photographer knows: “While my passive character mirrors stereotypes of the Asian men—almost always depicted as neutered, asexual, or submissive within media—it is my transgression as the photographer that undermines this passivity. Coupled with the other participants’ control over their own representation through their kiss, these images intend to question and confuse the role of the photographer and sitter, protagonist and supporting character, self-portrait and performance.” We recently found out more from Kha.
Why did you choose kissing as the method for self-portraiture as it is in effect here?
“I approach the picture making to explore desire, through intimacy, but it doesn’t necessarily look intimate in the photographs. It has to do with the desire to see oneself reflected. With kissing (on the lips), there’s something very expected about doing that act. I like to be surprised by photography since my work lies within the terrains of self-portrait, performance, and staged photography. Even in making these photographs, it’s not really about the kiss as an act itself but how each kiss is different.”
This week we’re bringing you another talented artist as part of our partnership with premiere website building platform Made With Color. Each week we bring you some of the most exciting artists and designers working today who are using Made With Color to create clean and sleek websites that are optimized for desktop, mobile, and tablet. Made With Color sites aren’t just good looking, they also feature powerful yet simple backend which allows anyone to create a professional site with just a few clicks.This week we are excited to share the detailed paintings of Scott Greenwalt.
Oakland based painter Scott Greenwalt’s dense paintings sway back and forth between abstraction and representation in a nervous frenzy. With references to cosmic galaxies and the human nervous system, his otherworldly paintings weave both the familiar and the unknown through one another creating ornate futuristic worlds.
“Scott Greenwalt presents images that illustrate with an uncanny precision the palpable horror of our physical situation. And like the alchemists of old, he instills in the work an element of the mysterious, a fantastical imagining of our souls and bodies transformed in matter and energy.
The result is landscapes and portraits populated and magnetized by cloudy æther, sinewy, degraded and corporeal fragile forms, fine filaments of hair and flesh transmutated by rays of energy streaming from eyes and orifices. The work captures a moment of profound fantastical physical change and refer to a thing larger than that what we can see with our own eyes, a nightmarish dimension of the alchemist’s gaze made manifest in all its magnificent terror.” – weekend
Beautiful/Decay is excited to bring you our exclusive artist feature in partnership with Made With Color, the premiere platform for artist websites. Each week we join forces to bring you some of the most exciting creatives working today who use Made With Color to create their clean and sleek sites. All Made With Color sites not only work beautifully on your computer but also come optimized for mobile and tablet users making sure that your portfolio looks professional no matter how you view it. For this weeks artist spotlight we bring you the paintings of Julia Schwartz.
Julia Schwartz’s paintings are inspired by anything and everything around her. Flooded studios, homes in various cities, disappearing icebergs, california light and relationships all are put through her (mostly) abstract painting process to create work that is intuitive and contemplative all at once. Our favorite pieces in her “State Of Being” series has to be the brutally honest text based paintings that display messages of catharsis and artistic despair.
On her website Schwartz states the following about her painting process:
I have something like a virtual rolodex in my mind which contains not names and numbers, but years of study, reading, looking, shadows, dreams, art, and world events. Like a receptacle of experiences, my unconscious unfurls into a painting in the same way described by chaos theory, with one small seemingly unrelated movement having an impact on the piece as a whole.
Beautiful/Decay has partnered with premiere website building platform Made With Color to bring you another exclusive artist feature. 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 doesn’t just help artists create gorgeous websites but allows them to do so in a few minutes without having to touch a line of code. This week we’re happy to bring you the mixed media collages of Tim Furey.
The work of New Jersey based illustrator Tim Furey is full of texture, shapes, neon colors and best of all aliens! Combining a wide array of media in his collages Furey creates psychedelically hued interiors, still lives, and narratives that will hint at the story without giving away the plot. Inexpensive craft paper meets holographic stickers and crayon scribbles create images that are as primal as they are futuristic. The result is a hypercolored world where aliens mingle with mankind to create unknown future worlds.
Argentinean artist and designer Francisco Miranda creates work in a variety of media from digital animations to graphic design. However his geometric wood collages are what really catch our eye. Miranda creates multi-layered wall objects and spatial installations from elaborately cut wooden forms. Reflecting on the architecture of his native city Buenos Aires, he looks at how the old has evolved into the new. His work combines elements of art nouveau and art deco to create an intricately ornamental species of caryatids to shape a futuristic Argentinean metropolis. (via Ignant)
Usually construction tunnels in the US are boring structures made out off steel bars and decaying plywood. But in France designer Miguel Chevalier, design firm Trafik and musical composer Michel Redolfi have come together to collaborate on a temporary tunnel between Forum Des Halles and the place carrée that will send you into sensory overload! Using LED technology “The Pixels Crossing 2012″ is a sensory installation that features successive graphics and psychedelic colors all set to the music of Michel Redolfi. The result is the fantastical transformation of a regularly forgotten space that will make you rethink the drab and mundane corners of the city that we all walk by during our daily commute. ( via designboom)
Beautiful/Decay has partnered with premiere website builder Made With Color to bring you some of the most exciting contemporary artists working today. Made With Color allows you to create a website that is professional and accessible with just a few clicks and no coding. This week we bring you the thick and gooey paintings of Annelie McKenzie.
Los Angeles painter Annelie McKenzie doesn’t delicately paint the figures in her works with thin transparent layers of paint. Instead she wields her brush and palette knife with abandon covering every square inch of her painting (and decorative frames) with brilliantly awkward paint handling. Dealing with themes of art history, gender, craft, and kitsch, McKenzie mixes high and low with thick globs of paint all the while referencing, acknowledging, and sampling compositions and techniques of the painters that came before her as well as her contemporaries.
In a world where there are fanatic fans of all things it should be no surprise that somewhere there is a large group of adults that are fanatical My Little Pony fans who convene once a year to celebrate all things “Brony” (a term used to describe themselves). Amy Lombard recently visited the yearly celebration called Bronycon to document the festivities for New York Magazine. You might think that Bronies are primarily females who are reliving their teenage years but much to our surprise most Bronies are adult males. I have to say that this takes the creep factor up a notch knowing that at least once a year hundreds of grown men cover themselves in glitter and fake horns and gallop around in a convention hall for several days straight. Is this an innocent geeky infatuation or a bunch of covert furries masquerading as My Little Pony fans? (via)