Acrylic, cell vinyl, and spray paint on panel 20 5/8”x12”
Jason Redwood creates transmogrophic kalleidoscopic explosions of pop culture saturated lucid dreams. With a background in illustration and design, many of his images embody a vibrant, hard-edge pop aesthetic that could almost be digitally generated. In fact- Redwood sites the visual vernacular of advertising, web, television, billboards–the current day image glut–as being woven into his insane tapestries. Childhood memories, strange visions, and humor also play off each other in hypersectra, hypersaturated colors, into a “beautifully perverse mega-meal,” as Redwood describes them. His works are visual feasts of fancy, intensely seductive eye-candy that, if they were allowed to flash and vibrate on a moving screen, would probably induce seizures–but in a transcendant, ecstatic way.
Detective Jason Harvey, a forensic sketch artist who has worked for the NYPD for over 10 years, draws fun and flamboyant portraits using the same techniques as he employs in his police work. His drawings might be recognizable to some New Yorkers, as it they are featured on “wanted” posters hung all around the city. However, Harvey has been given the opportunity for his work to be seen in a new light. Adam Shopkorn, owner of Fort Gansevoort Gallery, noticed Harvey’s work on the NYCAlerts Twitter and wanted to put it on display, allowing Harvey to jump from detective to artist. The NYPD wouldn’t consent to showing the actual sketches (as they are criminal evidence), so instead, Harvey has created a series he calls Fantasy Composites. Within this body of work, Harvey uses the same renderings and facial feature creation process as he would sketching up potential criminals, yet this time he is depicting imagined faces. Harvey explains the difference between this body of work compared to his detective sketches; he states, “when I’m interviewing an eyewitness and drawing from their memory, I have to strictly adhere to what they’re telling me about the person’s face.” He notes that the forensic work is “not creative at all.” Nonetheless, his imagined series is full of creativity and exuberance. Each work truly has it’s own character — there is a real sense that Harvey has seen it all. Nothing is too obscure or obscene, every portrait seems absolutely genuine, if not almost recognizable. The caricature quality adds a playful element to his work, allowing them to exist between the realms of cartoon and reality, between satire and actuality. (via booooooom)
The Good folks at Hennessy bring you a three part mini documentary featuring Elliott Wilson, Founder of Rap Radar and Editor-in-Chief of Respect. In this first video Wilson heads to the barbershop where, he explains, the voice of the street is heard. The man with endless talking points reminds us that, “your opinion is nothing unless you can back it up.” Join Wilson and Hennessy on a trip down the rabbit hole and watch more Hennessy videos with some of the worlds leading pop culture creatives at neverstopneversettle.com.
It sounds cliche, but scars really do tell stories. They speak of things like accidents, turbulent periods in our lives, and the road to recovery. Sometimes scars have funny origin stories and other times tragic ones. Photographer Sandra Franco explores these permanent body marks in her aptly-titled series, Scars. The quiet, intimate images feature people with these blemishes on their bodies, which are now apart of their physical personal history. Some are more noticeable than others, and on backs, arms, and even the neck. Franco explains Scars, writing:
Memory can be fragile and people find particular ways of holding on to it. Due to their strong evocative power, there is an evident connection between photographs and memories which I find fascinating. In this sense I observe a few parallelisms between scars and photography.
They share not only an aesthetic value, both being affected by the idea of “beauty”, but also an organic quality. Film ages and changes its properties in a similar way our body does, more visible through the marks, wrinkles and eventual scars left in our skin with the passing of time.
Thus, while taking a picture of a particular moment in time, light “scars” the negative, which once developed becomes a reminder of the past event. Some dramatic experiences, positive or negative, leave a physical trace on our bodies made visible through scars.
For me, scars are able to bring experiences from the past to the present moment,acting like “prints of memory”, just like photographs do.
Working with stylist Davy Pittoors and flowers supplied by The Willow Shoreditch, photographer Alexander James has created an incredibly beautiful series, Drowning in Brands. This collection features 10 recreations of some of the most recognizable brand symbols within the commercial world. I think what I enjoyed most about this series is the process of creation, and the fact that these did not undergo post production work either traditional or digital. Alexander required only rose formations and effectively clever lighting for this dark underwater photography. To view more of his work, make sure to visit his blog and stock library.
Like most people, when I was a kid I loved playing with a kaleidoscope. Pointing it at different light sources and twisting the chamber caused a morphing geometric mandala to take shape before my eyes, magically shifting sunshine and the colored bits inside into a series of hypnotizing designs. The same part of me that was enamored with a kaleidoscope is the same part of me that loves juicy colored highly geometric contemporary art.
As the highly influential artist and color theorist of the Bauhaus, Josef Albers, says so succinctly in his classic book Interaction of Color, “As with tones in music, so with color- dissonance is as desirable as its opposite, consonance.” The dance of tension and fluidity in an ever changing kaleidoscopic pattern is a rhythm of light and hue, which there is an abundance of in contemporary art. There are so many artists out there these days who use these components in their visual art, however the five artists included here emerge with unique strength, vision and technical ability that is worth noting. Artists include: Dalek (James Marshall), Maya Hayuk, Richard Colman, Amanda Airs and Jeff Depner
Jeff Faerber’s naughty painting series based on traditional Japanese Shunga prints capture the look of the original prints but update it with western figures and modern day gadgets, products, and food. It’s truly modern shunga.