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Oak Thitayarak

Chicago based artist Oak Thitayarak is a graphic designer, illustrator, and photographer; a “jack of all trades” .  He recently created a gritty series of street portraits documenting the homeless.

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Magalie Guerin

Canada to New York to Chicago, Magalie Guerin is an excellent young painter/photographer fresh out of SAIC. She’s currently investigating shape and color relations via painting with quite lovely results, and I’m genuinely looking forward to seeing where her work goes next. Magalie has recently shown works with The Suburban, Poor Farm Experiment, Julius Ceasar, and Autumn Space. More jams after the jump!

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Amanda Boe’s Poetic Photos Of The In-Between

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Reveling in the small, quiet corners of everyday life, Bay Area photographer Amanda Boe explores themes of isolation, curiosity and mise-en-scene in her strange, stunning work. When looking through images from her series Here and There, it’s easy to let your mind wander into each frame, gently prompted to think about time, place, and what it feels like to be “passing through.” The crisp simplicity of her work is charged with her natural sensibilities as a curious, highly-engaged observer—collecting visual treats as she moves through the world. Boe investigates the places in-between the larger moments of life, and reports back with work that is meditative, personal and poetic.

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Ben Hopper Transfigures People Into Abstract Sculptures

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Photographer Ben Hopper‘s “Transfiguration” project transforms his subjects into living sculptures. Each photo is charged with kinetic energy, only heightened by the bold streaks of body paint and splatters of white powder.

“Like a mask, the layers of body paint and powder disguise the identity and release something animalistic from within,” Hopper says. “It also creates a sculptor / painting looking figure, more abstract and less human.”

For his subjects, he chose to work with dancers and circus artists whose athleticism and grace enabled them to contort themselves into the surreal shapes needed. Some of the photographs look like cubist paintings because of the contrast between black, white, and human flesh along with the seemingly impossible angles and feats of flexibility performed by the subjects. The body paint looks almost like strokes of charcoal, creating depth while also the illusion of two-dimensionality.

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Neil Dawson’s Suspended Sculptures Appear To Defy Gravity

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New Zealand based sculptor Neil Dawson constructs sculptures made from aluminum and stainless steel, creating geometric shapes that appear to floating mid-air or suspended by nearly invisible reinforcements. Some of them look like simple illustrations, drawn in the air, while others are more complex constructions. Dawson often suspends his weightless work in civic spaces and skyscapes, creating gravity-defying, airy illusions.

“There’s something sanctified about a gallery environment because the works are physically and visually static,” Dawson says. “With public sculpture there’s a real dynamism because it’s constantly changing with the light and the elements. The majority of my work has more holes in it than substance – it’s about looking through things, not just at things. There’s always an element of surprise,” he says, noting the appearance of his sculptures changes day to day, and that the experience is unique to each viewer. “When art is frozen in a gallery, it loses those possibilities.” (via juxtapoz)

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Ben Bigelow

Video artist Ben Bigelow is curating an event “Jupiter And Beyond The Infinite” video screening/gallery opening tonight at 7pm (with screenings at 9 and 11pm) @ Synchronicity Gallery in LA: Deep-space excursions that reveal the dark matter of pop culture, absurdist mythologies that transcend into tear jerking dramas…all can be found in “Jupiter And Beyond The Infinite.” This forthcoming show at Synchronicity Space opens on July 31st with a video screening including 19 unique artists. 2-D and 3-D artifacts from the videos will accompany the screening and be on display throughout August. Those looking to travel through a black hole and keep your boots on: look no further. Check out more of his work after the jump.

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Studio Visit: Andrew Schoultz Draws on Historical Themes with Mixed Media Works

As part of our ongoing partnership with In The Make, Beautiful/Decay is sharing a studio visit with artist Andrew Schoultz. See the full studio visit and interview with Andrew and other West Coast artists at www.inthemake.com.

We were warned by Andrew’s wife and fellow artist Hilary Pecis, that his Mission District studio was in a state of disorder and it definitely lived up to the hype, but as Klea always says, “mess is photogenic.” An incidental side effect of making work, messes are often as telling and interesting as the end product itself. In many ways, there’s more story in the mess left behind; beginnings are laid bare, shifting and unfolding ideas can be tracked, and the push towards completion takes on a very real and tangible form. I think Andrew’s messes speak not only to the textured nature of his current work, which often features layer upon layer of varied materials, but also to the way in which he absorbs information, appropriates it, and then reconstructs and presents it. The course of political history and the themes that play out over and over again are of particular interest to Andrew. He keenly reads about, listens to, and observes a great deal about our historical and present-day developments, particularly around social, environmental, and economic issues, yet in his work he doesn’t depict or reference anything too closely to the facts. Instead he takes possession of information and personalizes it with his own visual language to get at the heart of a feeling, rather than clear-cut particulars or opinions. The imagery in Andrew’s work, the recurrent motifs and references, express a state where past and present continually converge, and where the future is not a new and distinct period up ahead, but rather just a reiteration of what came before.

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Michael Massaia’s Melting Ice Cream Portraits Capture Fleeting Childhood Moments

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Photographer Michael Massaia has been lauded for his haunting black and white photographs that catch the shadow life of cities at night. In his photo series, Transmorgify, he turns his eye not to a city caught in limbo, but rather a period of time. Massaia captures childhood treats melting into swirls and psychedelic puddles, creating traces of sugar and cream that look almost like wisps of smoke. 

From the classic Neapolitan ice cream bar to more modern fare such as My Little Pony popsicles with gumball eyes, the series shows a simpler time in a moment of transformation. Set against a stark black background, though, the photos aren’t quite portraits; they seem to take a deeper look, as though putting childhood memories on a microscope slide.
More than just sticky remnants between an 8-year-old’s fingers, Massaia’s work seems to allude to something more precious and ephemeral. Viewed from one perspective, the melting ice cream has the same pastel and neon colors as a sidewalk chalk drawing, smudged by fresh rain. From another perspective, the photos speak of decay and something that can’t be revisited, sweeter maybe in memoriam.
Transmorgify is currently on display at Gallery 270 in New Jersey until May 16th.

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