Erik Parker is a German-born, New York-based artist who paints mashed-up characters in psychedelic landscapes; from graffiti, to comic books, to hip-hop, his work represents a synthesis of subculture that has taken on a rebellious life of its own. His work is part of Beautiful/Decay’s Issue O:“…Is the Public Enemy,” a magazine dedicated to artists who critique—through different mediums—mainstream structures. Other featured artists include Anthony Hernandez, a photographer who documented over 40 years of marginalized people and disregarded places in Los Angeles, as well as Imaad Wasif, a singer-songwriter whose passionate, eclectic style traverses the realms of folk and psychedelic/postmodern rock.
Parker’s approach to the “public enemy”—normative society—is to animate cultural expressions of dissonance into grotesquely expressive beings. Order is twisted into madness; human bodies are melted into sensation-filled lava pools of eyeballs, mouths, and viscera; and playful, biomorphic shapes swell into the suggestively sexual. In true graffiti style, many of Parker’s works include words resonating with rebellion and discontent, such as “rize,” “torn,” and “sink/swim.” With their amorphous and infinitely unpredictable shapes, Parker’s paintings signify a fluid form of resistance that undermines structures of constraint.
To learn more about Parker, check out B/D’s Issue O, which includes a feature-length interview with the artist. Limited copies can be purchased in our shop.
To make sure you start the new year full of inspiration and creativity we are extending our holiday 50% off sale until January 10th! Now you can get 50% off all books, magazines, and artist shirts and get inspired by the thousands of artists and designers that we feature in our pages. Just use discount code “happyholidays50” during checkout and save big!
In Beautiful/Decay Book 5: Psychonauts we raise our anchor and set sail on an unknown voyage with seven featured artists whose work pushes the possibilities for consciousness within contemporary art. They each work in various mediums and conceptual frameworks but all share a common interest in the human condition. In addition to the features, we also invited 14 artists from around the world to create original work for our psychonaut project pages. The results are extremely unique and anything but predictable. Book 5 also includes a die-cut sticker created by artist, Gunsho.
With a limited edition run of only 1,000 books, 800 copies have already been sold which means that only 200 copies remain. Once Book: 5 sells out it will not be reprinted so stop waiting and reserve your limited edition copy today.
These are amazing. Duramen is a series of wooden sculptures depicting melted picture frames from French design collective Bonsoir Paris. The level of craftsmanship with these handmade works (sculpted by Adrien Coroller) is tops. The dynamic in play between the fine wood used and the decaying, deathly manner in which it is presented nicely illustrates how even the most supple, healthy aspects of life can easily fall from grace. The picture frame reference is a nice touch, forcing us to call into question our very perception and take into account its tendency to directly affect the practical world. Bonsoir Paris, founded by Morgan Maccari and Remy Clemente, has only been around since 2010, but if they continue to push forward in a direction that allows for the production of more work of this quality, they should do fine. (via)
I first got into Zach Johnsen’s work a few years ago when he lived in New York. But for a while now, he’s been in Portland, and it looks like he’s making his raddest stuff yet. He always incorporated fantastic characters into his mixed media work, and he’s continued to do so, creating more wooden cut-out installations and a series of graphite drawings infused with explosive watercolor elements. Johnsen’s always done a great job of rendering the darker side of life. His characters are full of dark eyes and yellowing teeth. Seriously awesome stuff from this dude, always.