Kazuki Guzmán‘s unique heritage (he has a Chilean father and a Japanese mother) informs the playful and fluid approach to his work. Guzmán’s creations range from toothpaste (!), nutshell, pencil, and gum sculptures to embroidered bananas and meat. For Guzmán, the essence of play is fundamental to the outcome of his work. “I equally enjoy allowing my materials to define the context of my artwork, and conversely, the challenge of letting the context of my work dictate the material execution. Most of my inspirations arise from mundane events… Most importantly, I strive for intricacy and exquisite craftsmanship in my work, while focusing on not losing my very whimsical sense of humor and play.” Guzmán lives in Chicago.
Alicia Eggert creates kinetic, electronic, and interactive sculpture and installation work. With a background in interior and architectural design, Eggert builds her work with a temporal conception reflected in the stillness and movement of her pieces. Implementing a variety of objects in her designs, such as clocks, flashing LED text, a perpetually spinning bicycle wheel, and re-usable ceramic coffee cups that shatter down a perceived assembly line, Eggert uses simple ideas to convey a world of depth. Some of her work is created in collaboration with other artists, as she values sharing the creative experience with another person. She currently lives in Portland, Maine, and teaches sculpture and architecture at Bowdoin College.
Ibon Mainar uses visual multimedia to create whimsical and colorful work. Whether he is creating gifs, torn cardboard designs, Instagram videos, video projections onto foil and tinsel, or sculpting gum and popcorn, Mainar’s aesthetic is contemporary and playful. His interjections into Edward Hopper’s paintings create a curious juxtaposition of modern and contemporary aesthetics. With simplicity and humor, Mainar develops a visual language across various media that feels novel and universal. Mainar lives in San Sebastian, Spain.
Nicholas Chistiakov moved with this parents from the Soviet Union to New York in 2003. While it was a difficult transition, after Chistiakov found inspiration in the found he found in museums in galleries. His first works were impressionistic in style, but shortly after these, his work a took a more photorealistic turn. After more inspiration from staying in Germany in 2005, Chistiakov had produced enough work for his own show in 2007, but the accumulated stress after this exhibition necessitated a stay in a psychiatric hospital. After this experience, his artwork changed to a more figurative style, reminiscent of Francis Bacon, and what he describes as deconstructivism. His work is abstracted and glitchy, and sometimes features iconic figures. Chistiakov currently lives in Brooklyn.
With his paintings, Adam Miller recontextualizes baroque and Hellenistic style elements by placing them within a modern futuristic landscape. Miller implements mythological, ecological, and humanistic themes in order to address ideas of technology and progress and “the struggle to find meaning in a world poised between expansion and decay.” His dreamy and angelic compositions reflect contemporary concerns with a classic and realist style. Imagery that might at first appear dated and inaccessible becomes relatable and modern upon closer inspection.
As a child, Jonathan Latiano found his artistic inspiration in the displays and dioramas at the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences. Latiano uses his understanding of biology, astronomy, physics and geology as starting points for the creation of his work and the way he contextualizes his physical world. Created with a variety of materials, his work evokes tensions of temporality and permanence, physicality and ephemerality, destruction and creation, stasis and kinesis, and fragility and strength. “I find the poeticism and concepts of the physics of our universe simultaneously fascinating, beautiful and horrifying. The pieces that I create contrast abstracted human intuition with the reality of our natural environment. I strive to emphasize the areas that exist in-between the boundaries of defined regions. My work, in many ways, is my own personal attempt to understand my place in the physical universe.”
Joan Cornellà’s comic designs are clean and simple but pack a raunchy and provocative punch. His illustrations are light-hearted yet darkly humorous, relying more strongly on visual clues and gags as opposed to textual elements to indicate a simple narrative. Out of a simple bright color palette, Cornellà creates strange and uncomfortable images that can be weirdly funny and a bit gruesome. You can follow him on Facebook, where he updates frequently and has already amassed over 300,000 fans. Cornellà currently lives in Barcelona.
Ángela Lergo is a Sevilla based artist specializing in sculpture and set design. Much of her work is centered around the human body and its evocation and relationship to its environments. Her background in set design has allowed her to play with the way space, lighting, and sculpture arrangements contribute to a particular atmosphere. Though the works are sculpted and stationary, they evoke a hint of performance in their presentation. Using human figures as a mode of expression, Lergo creates dream-like landscapes and resonances that are both poetic and emotional. Lergo uses a variety of materials for her installations, including ground stone, polyester resin, epoxy resin, wax, LED lights, video, sandstone, aluminum, feathers, industrial containers, and black oil.