André Tempel‘s alien sculptures look like they belong in the lair of an evil mastermind bent on destroying the planet. His works look like colorful WWII underwater mines, or rotors fitted with revolving saw blades. I feel like Frankenstein’s creature is about to emerge from this orange capsule.
Maybe it’s because I live in Los Angeles where rain is seldom and driving culture is strong, but these oil paintings by Tom Birkner make me want to dig through my tape collection– yup, tapes– and pop a little Tom Waits in before heading out onto the highway. I would extrapolate on this connection, but I think the actual lyrics from “Diamonds On My Windshield” illustrate it best–
Blazing through this midnight jungle Remember someone that you met One more block; the engine talks And whispers ‘home at last’ It whispers, whispers, whispers ‘home at last’, home at last
Sean Pecknold aka Granchildren recently sent me this lovely video he did for the song “While You Wait for the Others” by Grizzly Bear, an interesting trip through a theater of the absurd, and as the title implies, seems to loosely be based around ideas of the passage of time.
In an increasingly global world, it seems that more is spreading than just information and culture: pollution, for one. Alejandro Duran creates site-specific art out of this manmade resource, staging hauntingly beautiful installations that draw awareness to what he calls “colonization by consumerism.”
“More than creating a surreal or fantastical landscape, these installations mirror the reality of our current environmental predicament,” Duran says in his artist’s statement. Called Washed Up, the project has seen debris from all over the world and, though the colors can be stunningly lovely, the message is unmistakably grim. Swirls of color and organic-seeming patterns and shapes are shaped out of plastic and artificially neon bottle caps.
Duran’s statement describes the way he has mapped the relationship between the world of man and the world of nature, as well as the toll it’s taken on us all:
“Over the course of this project, I have identified plastic waste from fifty nations on six continents that have washed ashore along the coast of Sian Ka’an. I have used this international debris to create color-based, site-specific sculptures. Conflating the hand of man and nature, at times I distribute the objects the way the waves would; at other times, the plastic takes on the shape of algae, roots, rivers, or fruit, reflecting the infiltration of plastics into the natural environment.”
When you take a look at Jazmin Berahka’s work you’re transported back to a time where craft was key. Her intricate embroidery drawings are flawlessly made, full of pattern, detail and distinct personality. You can clearly see how much thought and care she puts into each of her pieces. Her series range from shy girls with delicately patterned garments, to more abstract works showcasing her embroidery skills. Whichever you prefer, her work is definitely worth a good long look.
Salt Lake City based artist Stephanie Kelly creates beautifully detailed illustrations out of thread. The series featured here is entitled “Dwellings” and speaks to the theme of domesticity that informs Kelly’s use of embroidery and her attempt to reclaim craft as fine art. Painting with thread instead of oils gives her work depth and tactility, creating rich and voluminous textures and blends. Kelly embroiders thread and fabric wallpaper pieces onto stretched canvases, which gives her work this remarkably detailed multi-textured design. Kelly began as a painter and illustrator, and was eventually given the opportunity to work with whatever medium she desired and decided to combine her skills with her love of craft. Kelly says her grandmother taught her to embroider and that this has largely inspired the domestic theme that permeates her work. Kelly’s painter’s eye applied to embroidery reminds me of the last embroidery work I posted, featuring Ana Tereza Barboza. You can watch a video profile of Kelly after the jump. (via from89)
Beautiful/Decay is ringing in spring with our latest selection of art-based T-shirts. This season’s roster of artists include Ben Tegel, Jiro Bevis, YAIAGIFT, Steve Bonner & Ryan Riss. Playful re-works of iconic pop cultural references, sleek design, and humorous, hand-drawn graphics all collide within our latest collection.
The Spring 2010 Lookbook was shot on the Beautiful/Decay headquarters’ very own rooftop, and in the surrounding Downtown Los Angeles neighborhood.