I love Taylor Davis’ weird little boxes and bizarre constructions. A lot of them remind me of the magic trick paraphernalia I used to play with endlessly as a little girl- like they have secret compartments or something.
Giuseppe Penone is an Italian artist and a member of the Arte Povera group who is interested in forming a connection between man and nature. In fact, his work mostly relies on the fact that ultimately, the two are inseparable. Formally, his work relies on the play between gestures and the imprint, the play of light and shadow, and textures and surfaces.
Ever interested in incorporating unusual materials into his works, which are also usually created untraditionally, Penone largely focuses on the boundaries between art and nature and the interdependence among all organic life forms. For an installation at the Tate he carved out wood to reveal its past, allowing the tree to return to a form it had in an earlier stage of growth. In other instances, Penone will cast tree forms in bronze, choosing the medium because its chroma and characteristics liken themselves to those of the bark of a tree. For another project Penone discovered an ancient vase with its maker’s fingerprints still intact. He transferred images from one surface to another to create a series of bronze vessels that mingled his own fingerprints with those from the past.
Most recently Penone’s work can been seen at Versailles. The installation demonstrates Penone’s dedication to wood, stone, marble, bronze and other materials the artist feels have an essence. “What interests me,” says Penone, “is when the work of man starts to become nature.”
Artist Hoang Tran creates your favorite pop-culture characters, from The Simpson’s to the Ninja Turtles, all out of wax…but not just any wax. Tran carves each character from a jumbo-sized crayon! That’s right, each intricately and meticulously detailed character is carved from your everyday Crayola crayon…the same crayons that you used to make your own “masterpiece” with at age three. Each pop-culture icon is carved from the color in which it dominantly possesses, but also has hints of other colors that make up the finishing touches of the character. To do this, Tran melts different colored waxes, or crayons, and then applies the melted pigment onto the finest details of his creations. The amazing detail speaks wonders about the talent and patience the artist must have in order to master such a painstaking craft.
What is so wonderful about this artist’s crayon creatures is that only half of the wax is carved. The other side of the crayon is left intact, Crayola wrapper and all! Tran creates all sorts of characters such as Batman, Gizmo, Spongebob and Cookie Monster. He even carves out real life people such as Conan O’Brian. This series, appropriately titled Wax Nostalgic, is chalk full of infamous characters. It is a nostalgic dream. If you are a Star Wars fan, Tran has transformed a crayon into every character from this classic film from Hans Solo to Princess Leia. This impressive little treasures can be found on Hoang Tran’s website, or his Etsy site, where you can have get crayon characters for yourself. (via Inkult Magazine)
NJ-native Matthew Charles Crabe pulls his imagery out from the deepest parts of his mind-gutter. There’s all sorts of fleshy things teleporting out of, or going into, strange orifices, then there’s the spillage of lactated milk, 40oz malt liquor, doo-doo, female and male juices, complete with the ageless beauty of symmetry. This wonderful mixture makes me think of one of his horrific, yet funny, images being diagrammed for there beautifully symmetrical properties in the way a celebrity’s face might be. Be warned, all images after the jump are certainly incredibly gnarly.
Lisa Alonzo’s sugary technique obscures a dark symbolic core. The images are beautiful and the technique is divine. In fact, the technique is a refinement of one of the high points of Modern painting, Pointillism, and Alonzo adds another, almost hysterical layer to Seurat’s Le Grande Jatte, by combining the beauty of Pointillism’s ballet of color with the designer frosting florets of a confectioner. According to the press release from Claire Oliver Gallery, that excess of beauty, when compared with the otherwise violent or mundane subjects, a hand grenade, a gun, a beer can, is a critique aimed at consumer desire. As a painter who has often struggled with acrylic painting, I was really impressed by the freshness of these paintings. You can see Lisa Alonzo’s new work at Claire Oliver until April 26th. Photos courtesy of Claire Oliver Gallery.
Michael Eudy has some juicy oil paintings on site. My favorites have to be his figurative and still life works (pictured above and below).
The Australian-based photographer Steve Axford captures some mind-boggling fungi, including tropical mushrooms that had likely not been caught on film prior to these images. Compelled to adventure into obscure places left unexplored by most men, the artist documents strange organisms, many of which are found in his native area, the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales. A number of species exhibited in his body of work exist in more temperate zones, like Tasmania and the state of Victoria.
Axford, a retired computer system designer and manager, hopes to marry science and art. His photographs, in addition to being beautiful, are useful in the identification and cataloging of species previously undocumented. Prior to Axford’s efforts, the hairy mycena, a snowy white mushroom with a fuzzy cap and a translucent stem had not been spotted or archived in Australia. The same holds true for the blue leratiomyces, a plant native to New Caledonia and Lord Howe Island.
Seen here in striking detail are the most uncanny of fungi species, each enchanting in its own magical way. Some are bioluminescent, glowing an electric green in the night air; others are impossibly delicate, sprouting elegantly from moistened tree trucks. Unexpected colors spill into nature’s canvas with the growth of purple, blue, pink, and bright red mushrooms. The artist explains that photography has gifted him with the opportunity to slow down and absorb the earthly wonders that surround him; in shooting these strange, spindly lifeforms, he gives us the opportunity to do the same. Take a look. (via Colossal)