Paul Cherwick approaches his subtractive wooden sculptures with the spontaneity of drawings, treating them as quick, multi-sided one-offs. Employing a carving technique, he chooses an art that runs the gamut, unchanged between folk art material, and the stuff of priceless antiquities. Cherwick creates his figures as allegories, each with an absurd background story; they show the classical grace of the commoner, rather than his or her banality. His cast of personal folklores draws from Classical Greek mythology, in which individuals serve as tropes, created to personify human qualities in ways that are often very literal. Though he is drawn to wood for its classical nature and inherent morality, his translations of the material often verge on Pop.
Fantich & Young is the creative partnership of artists Mariana Fantich and Dominic Young, who have been working together since 2008. In their series Apex Predator (meaning a predator with no predator of their own),they imagine the world’s toughest animal, and attempt to dress it. They created a suit and two pairs of shoes using natural materials that the Apex Predator could have gathered from his prey; a grotesque but awesome display of power. The suit is covered with human hair, with glass eyes and small bones for buttons. The collar is lined with dentures. The artists created two pairs of shoes to match the suit: oxfords and high heels, both lined with dentures (the thought of standing on teeth gives me goosebumps!!). This is a true power suit, designed for the cold-blooded animal who has fought their way to the very top of the food chain. The fact that this suit is designed to fit the human form is a clear indication of who the artists think that animal is…
Elemental and Royal/T are hosting a benefit art auction for Build Change, a non-profit organization that helps build earthquake resistant homes. The night will feature 92 artists and over 100 works of art, as well as live music and free food. For more info on the show and the artists involved, please visit www.aftershockla.com. See some of my favorite images by artists in the show after the jump.
Linda Gass stitches together hand-painted silk crepe de chine to create these colorful aerial representations of the topography and geography of the San Francisco Bay. Some of the image designs she sources from other publications, while others are completely her own, like her depiction of an imagined restoration of Bair Island. Other land features represented include the original Dumbarton bridge (opened 1927), the Southern Pacific Railway bridge (opened 1910), the Fields of Salt, the South Bay, and salt ponds. In addition to these quilts, Gass also uses paint, mixed media, and even the land itself to create work that consistently addresses issues of land and water use.
From her artist statement, “I use the lure of beauty to both encourage people to look at the hard environmental issues we face and to give them hope. My paintings are done on silk, a naturally beautiful surface, and I gravitate towards luminous, saturated colors, giving my work an optimistic feeling. Although many of the landscapes I depict are ugly in reality, my landscapes are beautified as I prefer to engage the viewer through pleasure. I am trying to create an attitude shift from feeling overwhelmed by the magnitude of the problems to feeling inspired and empowered to take action through the experience of art.” (via skumar’s)
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.
Some of Ann Veronica Janssens‘ work is clearly and singularly about color. For a number of her installations, Janssens’ uses a color film that transforms the light shining through it. She then fills the space with an artificial fog which seems to glow with color. The fog acts as a vehicle to carry the light and spread it into the air of the space; a way to experience color and only color. There is no depth, texture, or line but just color and its saturation. The installations create a dreamy atmosphere when any medium between color and the eye seems to disappear.
After unknowingly purchasing fake pre-Colombian artifacts, artist Nadín Ospina gave serious thought to Latin-American culture and its ancient roots. His sculptures depicts pop-culture cartoon characters such as Snoopy, Micky Mouse, and Bart Simpson in an often pre-Colombian style. His work is a powerful but simple comment on the globalization of entertainment and information. How much of our personal and collective identities is lost to an increasingly global community?