Emile Morel creates surreal digital illustrations reminiscent of whimsical childhood fantasies such as The Neverending Story and Where the Wild Things Are. His illustrations depict dream worlds, often with children, and heavily feature anthropomorphic characters rife with bestial and primal imagery. His work is evocative of fairy tales, complete with a dark and foreboding element encapsulated in the “grotesque” nature of some of his figures and human animal hybrids. Intimate and highly allegorical, Morel’s attention to detail, especially in this medium, is impressive.
Victoria Miro Gallery will present the latest body of work by Danish artist Tal R. From 2005 to 2008, in his dynamic studio christened ‘Palace’, Tal R has extended his practice to integrate the fields of dance, film, theatre, cabaret, music and fashion. The works from armes de chine are deeply rooted in this period of intense experimentation.
At first glance, media artist Nicholas Hanna‘s installation looks like some kind of DIY gallows. It’s sparsely constructed: just wood and string set before a simple $20 table fan. Below the string, a tray filled with liquid soap — death by Mr. Clean, perhaps?
Then the machine kicks into gear, dipping the string into the soap, drawing it up slowly, and suddenly an iridescent bubble blooms out of nothing. Magic.
Hanna works seem to incorporate one part engineering and two parts childhood wonder. One of his other pieces is a Beijing tricycle that, as the rider pedals, uses water droplets to write Chinese calligraphy in Courier New. Another piece utilizes motion sensors to cause a cascade of light depending on how a candle flame is shielded by a hand. And another still is a long gunmetal trumpet mounted on a toy truck, labeled simply as “Fire Truck #1.” What does the fire truck do? It starts sounding the alarms at 7:30 p.m., of course.
The bubble machine — “Bubble Device #1,” naturally — is another one of these curiosities. It’s unusual to see beautiful bubbles created by something as sterile as Hanna’s spare framed machine, in an environment as austere as a plain white-walled room. But the wonder is still there.
David Mach‘s incredible installations spill and pour into the spaces they inhabit with the fluidity of water and the compositional precision of a laser. Created out of discarded magazines and other found objects these larger than life installations take over entire buildings in every shape possible from immense columns to organic round piles of mass that pick up everything in its path. (via)
Meghan Smythe is a California-based (Canadian-born) artist who creates expressively disturbing sculptures of crushed flesh and glistening viscera. The muted, peaches-and-cream colors are initially deceiving in their innocence; emerging from the twisted monuments are dismembered and defleshed body parts, shaved down and mashed together. Like a theater of the grotesque, faces gasp from beneath piles of entrails and moldering skulls, and limbs reach and splay in dynamic expressions of violence, love, lust, and tenderness. Much like the contortions of passion and death, the energy rolls throughout the compositions, oscillating between states of vigor and exhaustion. Leah Ollman, having reviewed Smythe’s recent solo show at the Mark Moore Gallery, provided this spot-on description of “Young Becoming” for The Los Angeles Times:
“Limbs are entwined, tongues extended. Clay is rarely, if ever, this carnal. Some of the skin is mannequin-smooth but veined with cracks. Some seep a pink foam or a pale fecal flood. Erotic pleasure plays a part here, but is only one of many competing charges” (Source).
By displaying representations of body parts in surprising (and unsettling) reconfigurations, Smythe brings the charges of pleasure and agony, beauty and squalor to the operating table. Displayed for us are simultaneous births and deaths, made almost indecipherable by the material realities of the body: the fluids, the waste, the mess of living, and the will to survive. In “A Light Culture”, for example, a man with a severed arm and scarred flesh sits quietly, wounded but pensive, while a disembodied hand gropes at his erection. Elsewhere, in “Lunacy”, a decapitated subject grimaces in despair while reaching for his heart. More tenderly still, in “Coupling”, two hands lie adjacent to each other and touch lightly. In moments of both intimacy and horror, Smythe turns the possibilities and limitations of the flesh into sculptures and makes them strangely beautiful.
Hollie Chastain is a collage artist from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Her eye for puzzling together found paper scraps with cut images, shapes, or silhouettes, matched with a rainbow pop of arresting color, gives her collection a vintage yet contemporary appeal. So, it’s no surprise to see her work grace the covers of not only the literary Oxford American but also musical albums from The Figgs and Lightyear.
Most recently, Chastain had brunch with The Jealous Curator to discuss her love of antiquing for found imagery and her pretty heavenly book cover series (above), noting her process: “I never plan them ahead of time. When I find one I like, I sit down with my scraps and move things around until something feels perfect. Most of the time, I will first decide what I can’t bear to cover up on the original cover and that is the beginning of the shape of the composition.”
Miao Chunxiao’s new media work employs the latest three-dimensional computer technology to create montage images and virtual realities that interpret historic artworks, especially classic paintings before and after the Renaissance.
I’ve been following the work of Kristin Baker for over a decade watching the work go from explosive paintings of race cars to the complex and layered abstract explosions of color that she’s working on currently. Last night I visited her personal site and was pleasantly surprised by the high level of documentation. Not only does the site have all her work broken down by year but there’s also time lapse process shots of many of the newer pieces as well as gorgeous photos of her studio which looks better than most NYC galleries.