I will start this off by saying, I know it’s a bit cliche for a 25 year old woman to begin posting about wedding chapels on art blogs. Regardless, I do have other things on the brain, like art!
Honestly, I feel like I never really appreciated the mighty, widely conferred “greatness” bestowed upon the behemoth architect Frank Lloyd Wright until seeing this 1948 Wayfarer’s Chapel. I know that’s like a musician “suddenly” getting the Beatles, but this is magestic and awe-inspiring! The setting itself looks like a wizard’s mighty abode; constructed entirely out of glass, towering redwoods act as the pilasters of the church itself. It’s like a living, breathing ancient relic from The Hobbit- can’t you just see the Elvin-Mortal weddings taking place here? Not to mention, it’s dedicated to Swedenborg,the mystic who wrote the canonical (later very influential on occultists, who blended the text with alchemy and divination) text “Heaven and Hell,” detailing all manner of demons and spirits that he purported to have witnessed himself. It’s quite a crystal ball, I feel the energy could channel some very supernatural thoughts indeed.
Brooklyn based Stacy Fisher utilizes Hydrocal, shellac, burlap, wire mesh, paint, and wood to create subtle yet unrefined forms. The platforms in which her structures reside are as integral to the work as the rough abstractions that take center stage. These monuments remain tethered at times by chains and bolts as if imprisoned. Fisher presents vibrant and simplistic structures that exhilarate their environment.
Gaspar Lepage is the pseudonym of Bristol artist Marcello Velho. His work, which is mostly animated GIFs, explores the pre-Web 2.0 era internet aesthetic (Geocities, basically) through content consisting of strange half-robot/half-monster creatures in environments inhabited by weird plants, graffitied walls, and lots of bubble writing.
Using a Cabinet of Curiosity aesthetic, Femke Hiemstra creates a carnivalistic fantasy world. In her oeuvre the roles of humans and animals are blurred placed in odd scenarios which offer humorous and dark tales of sacrifice, war and performance. Taking references from classic novels such as Gulliver’s Travels and ancient folk tales, it’s obvious that these should be made into cinema because the images are so fully animated. However, their 2D nature turns them into fine art illustration and allows the viewer to look further and take a lasting moment to linger in their imagination.
Hiemstra’s play on words further enhance the narrative in her paintings. One called “groupies” is especially humorous showing a female singing apple watched in awe by her grouper audience. It’s a classic example of the type of work Hiemstra makes which combines the bizarre with popular culture to tell stories which recall nursery rhymes and absurdist commentary. Her style brings to mind an artist I was very fond of years ago called Elizabeth Albert. She also used animals in odd narratives to tell stories about human behavior and circumstance.
Hiemstra’s illustrations are created using a light acrylic paint and water. She often tops her work with colored pencils which give it that extra definition. She mostly uses paper or panel but occasionally will paint on old books and wooden antiques like clocks or religious objects. She sells prints of her original artwork at a very reasonable price of 100 euros on average. (via hifructose)
Alexis Semtner’s abstract paintings utilize optical illusion to distort the viewers spatial awareness. According to Semtner, her use of visual falsity is used to denote perception and draw attention to how ubiquitous the notion of hallucination is in the human mind. I like the comforting and almost calming colors juxtaposed to the disconcerting Escher-esque environments, I think that the combination works well to create a world of constantly changing perceptions.
In deconstructing Barbie dolls and repurposing them as jewelry for “Plastic Bodies Series,” the designer Margaux Lange forces us to enter an uncomfortable space between disgust and worship of the iconic toy. Barbie, who has been a target of the last decades’ feminist debate, occupies an ambiguous role in the social and sexual development of girls; she exudes sexuality with her adult figure, but she also remains virginal, never revealing her nipples or genitalia.
Lange’s work powerfully evokes the girlhood tension between reverence and anger felt towards the doll and its conflicting representation of female eroticism. At its most practical, the art is a function of style; elevated to the status of precious jewels, Barbie’s eyes and breasts inspire nostalgia and desire. Yet the doll is so clearly dismembered, and therefore violently objectified, and her selfhood becomes reduced to a series of nearly identical body parts, arranged for your consumption.
Arguably, the most compelling of the works include Barbie’s male companion doll Ken. Although the dolls often serve as play actors for a child’s early exploration of sexual desire and experience, their plastic forms obscure and confuse concepts of intimacy. In isolating the dolls’ features, Lange is able to express more clearly-seen longings within the previously sterile dolls; they become fixated between metal filigrees, robbed of their eyes but permanently in contact with one another. In use, the relationship between the owner and the doll also reaches new levels of fetishistic fascination. In one pair of earrings, doll hands reach out to touch the curve of the human neck; a necklace allows a tiny pair of metal lungs, filled with the breath of Barbie and Ken, to lay atop the wearer’s own chest. Take a look. (via Margaux Lange and BUST)
Brooklyn-based artist Matt Reilly of Japanther skateboards on a canvas-covered mini ramp in order to create loosely colored paintings. With just a handful of simple tools: a skateboard, some paint-dipped sponges and a plain canvas, Reilly was able to create his abstract-looking artworks by skating back-and-forth over the sheet.
The setting for the “Wall Ride” was installed at the Mana Contemporary in Jersey City. A white canvas was tacked to the surface of a half-pipe. Using saturated sponges attached to the wheels, Reilly colored the white sheet in vibrant shades of blue, red and brown. After finishing one artwork, the canvas would be replaced and the process would start all over again.
Distinct in texture and color, Reilly’s works have been titled to resemble Jackson Pollock’s and Aaron Young’s abstract art. Apart from the end result, artist’s live performance is titled to be a big part of the whole experience. Watching the mesmerizing process of an artwork unfolding puts the viewer into a creative catharsis. Reilly’s “skate-paintings” can be purchased on Artsy platform. (via designboom)