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Hand-Stitched Portraits Reflect Our Complicated Relationship With The Digital Age

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Melbourne-based artist Catherine Tipping uses an analog way of working to depict digitally-minded portraits. Blurring the line between what’s on the screen and off, she uses wool to stitch human faces that are partially pixelated, glitchy, or generally just obscured through Photoshop. They are sewn onto a gridded canvas, which is not unlike the the pixels that we see on screen. These similarities make for a compelling series titled Filter that meditates on identity and the way technology has totally changed our culture.

Tipping explains the concept behind her work in an email to The Huffington Post, writing:

I was learning about Modernism and how technology changed society culturally back then. I saw how the Digital era has had a similar affect on our culture. Now that we are in the second decade of the new millennium, we rely on the efficiency of digital technology. Recently, in some aspects of society, it appears there is a yearning for the handmade. Maybe now is the time when digital and handmade mediums can be combined and embraced by society. I see this bridge in my processes by using a digital image with all its pixels and hand stitching it.

Depending on how you’re looking at them, they can resemble digital renderings or traditional fiber work. Tipping intersperses bits of both worlds within a single composition, creating one whole work that’s a combination of influences. “I am interested in cultural identity on many levels; societal, sub-cultural and personal,” she writes to The Huffington Post. “I like considering the distinctive visual traditions of different eras and outside factors that shape them. These portraits may appear distinctive of our current era or not, I sometimes wonder if we are becoming so anachronistic that we are indistinctive of a time.” (Via The Huffington Post)

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Lucas Soi

lucas soiLucas Soi is a Canadian artist living and working in Vancouver, B.C. His interdisciplinary
practice involves work on paper, installation and video.

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Ellen Lesperance’s Reconstructed Feminist Sweaters Realized As Drawings And Garments

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In her upcoming exhibit at Ambach & Rice, artist Ellen Lesperance intently and painstakingly reconstructs the sweaters of feminism’s heroines.  Hand drawn and hand knit, the installation serves to attach these women’s politcal ideals and activism to their personal identity.  Lesperance lovingly presents the objects nearly as if they were relics.  Indeed, throughout the exhibit Lesperance alludes to ancient heroines in connection with these modern ones.  In that light, the sweaters become a sort of “soft armor” in a struggle that extends from ancient female warriors to today’s feminist activists.  Appropriately, the title of Lesperance’s exhibit is It’s Never Over.

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Aya Kato Flowers Pillow

Here’s another brand new artist series Pillow for you to rest your head on. This time we’re featuring an Aya Kato graphic called Flowers taking inspiration from both Japanese Scroll painting and Art Nouveau.  Find out more  and see detail shots of  Flowers as well as our other pillows on the B/D shop.

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Lee Bul’s Infinite Installations Will Fracture Your Reflection Into A Thousand Pieces

Lee Bul - Installation

Lee Bul - Installation

Lee Bul - Installation

Lee Bul’s transformative installations pull you into a fractured space of infinite mirrors. The Korean artist, both well versed in illustration as well as installation and sculpture, forms complex, maze-like structures with interiors made of mirrors that reflect in all different directions, creating a disorienting effect. Bul takes seemingly small, secluded spaces and magnifies its size by making the space seem never-ending, keeping you exploring each layer of the multi-faceted structure. The highly industrial installations create such intricate depths and perspectives that allow you to fall into a place of vertigo. Each fractured mirror bounces back color and light in a way that transforms and bends the space around you into an intense kaleidoscope. Bul’s interactive artwork gives way to a fractured universe of distorted shapes and space.

The artist, being multi-talented, mixes elements of architecture in her work to design the sleek exteriors of her installations. Adding to the lustrous, reflective surfaces of the interior walls are the reflective floors of the exhibition, creating even more confusing space perception. This unique work creates a range of emotions from the anxiety caused by the ambiguity of depth, to the overwhelming awe from the beauty and sublime of the endless space around you. Each installation is a portal to another world, absorbing you in its abstracted images that include your own reflection. This unearthly theme is present in much of Bul’s work, as her illustrations often include unknown beings and aliens. Bul’s stunning mirrored labyrinths are now on view at the Museé d’Art Moderne in Saint –Eitienne in France. (via Design Boom)

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Kazuhiko Okushita’s Enchanting One-Line Animations

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Kazuhiko Okushita is better at Etch-a-Sketch than you: He creates whimsical animations and illustrations with just one single line. His art is refreshing in its simplicity, though there is also a quiet depth to his creations. His 2009 animation, “Red Thread” (link below), wordlessly captures the rhythms of life. The characters that emerge and vanish from the eponymous thread are amazingly expressive, like two-dimensional puppets come to life with emotions and mannerisms all their own. “Red Thread” also employs a classic symbol of Japanese and Chinese mythology: the red string of fate which is supposed to connect soulmates and should be impossible to be severed — though of course life doesn’t always work that way.

Other examples of Okushita’s work, such as his GIF animations of a pet jellyfish and goldfish, are more straightforward and make excellent use of the medium. There’s something soothing about watching jellyfish disappear and re-appear. Its outline is graceful and mesmerizing. To put it simply, Okushita’s work shows that less is definitely sometimes more. (via Spoon & Tamago)

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Samantha Bittman

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Samantha Bittman makes good-looking opstractions.  They are painted on handwoven textiles, which adds a nice ripply surface to go with the hand painted lines.  If you focus and un-focus your eyes they get even better.

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Cassandra Simon

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Stumbled onto some delightfully curious paintings by Cassandra Simon last night that have the smoothly detailed qualities of a perfectly executed relief print. Robust with color, these images seem to be a mix of mystery and folklore.

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