We haven’t posted any abstract paintings in a while so I thought post some work by Rockford Illinois painter Jennifer Krantz. These paintings have everything in them from fire crackers to spray paint to sequins. Although some of the work reminds of Fiona Rae I think Jennifer gets a pass for creating such fun chaos.
Tony Cragg is truly a master of materials. Moving effortlessly between plastic, wood, bronze, glass, and found materials Cragg as been creating groundbreaking formal sculptures since the early 70’s. Perhaps one of the most skilled sculptors of the last Century Cragg is an artist whose work keeps pushing the boundaries even at the age of 63.
Junk artist Rubbish Fairy (Sophie Soni) is constantly hoarding, collecting, cutting, gluing and arranging, yeap you guessed it, rubbish. She manages to take discarded plastic bits and pieces and turns them into wearable, kitschy, technicolor rainbow explosions. Soni fashions together chunky head pieces, masks, breastplates, dresses for different performers, musicians, artists, and fashion shoots. Basically anything that can adorn the body, she has it covered. Her pieces include stunningly ornate chandelier head dresses, or Victorian-style flouncy dresses littered with cheap and cheerful gems, or balaclava masks covered with red silicon lips, pig noses and multiple strings of beads. She has even chopped up soft toys in the past and used their various limbs and heads as different bits of jewelry.
Ms Fairy piles everything on all at once and manages to bask in the chaos she creates. As a comment on consumer culture, vanity, the fashion industry, and the economy of desire, her work is reminiscent of installation artist Mike Kelley. Both manage to exist simultaneously within and outside of pop culture. They heavily reference, and use the resources from the world around them, yet manage to place themselves in an order separate from it.
Rubbish Fairy’s world is a surreal, captivating, all encompassing one – where, if you’ve been in it for long enough, you will start to see the trash around you quite differently. See more of her out-of-this-world creations after the jump.
If her voluptuous women with their cartoon eyes weren’t enough, Lisa Yushavage captured my soul by saying:
“As an artist you’re supposed to spend your life doing something that’d be an utter waste of time for anyone else. And even so, there’s no proof you’re not wasting your life making some total crap.” (Source)
Using her exceptional skill in oil paints to create hyper-hued landscapes with ripe, almost blowsy, nudes is clearly not making crap. With a career that started in the mid 1990s, her work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at prominent institutions, including the Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City; Royal Academy of Arts, London; and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.
“I don’t want my pictures to be up to any good. I like the idea that they’re troublemakers. So if I’m told they’re bad for the world, it pleases me. I don’t want to make something that’s an antidote. I want to pose questions. That’s what I do. I suppose I strive to bother people and be loved for it. That’s the dream.” (Source)
These are erotic pictures of women, painted by a woman. Rather than the patriarchal view of sexual woman as object, these women are sexual for themselves. Sometimes kinky, often controversial, these paintings have been compared to soft-core porn. It’s intended as an insult, but it’s actually a reclaiming of power and the ability to depict women in all their forms. “It’s not about being well behaved,” Yaskavage says. “It’s not about behaving for others.”
The essence of female power is not that women must be desexed, it’s that women can decide how they want to be seen—sexy, silly, powerful, maternal, erotic, masculine, intelligent, profound—any combination of these, and much more. Yaskavage’s women are the creatures of her mind, brought to life through her skill with a paintbrush, and behaving in exactly the way they’re meant to in the worlds she’s created.
From collage to film, Aaron Maurer is one talented guy. Aaron hails from the frozen tundra of the Midwest. After growing up in Minneapolis, MN, he headed East to attend Rhode Island School of Design, where he majored in film and animation. He now lives and works in New York… in a cave.
Sculptor, Thom Puckey has been in the game for some time now. His beautiful marble sculptures are breathtaking and his style is that of the iconic saying “sex, drugs, and classical greek sculptures?” YEAH. Pretty fun stuff.
Beautiful/Decay teamed up with By Osmosis TV to create a unique video artist profile on Robbie Conal. Conal’s searing political caricatures fuse iconography and symbols from pop culture, current media and his own imagination. We are frequent collaborators with Robbie- most recently he contributed a beautiful skeleton-dance glitter painting to our current retrospective show, “Beautiful/Decay: A to Z.” You can see Robbie working on the piece in his studio in the video– as well as discussing his artwork and philosophy! We’re thrilled to be working with By Osmosis on a number of upcoming projects, including another artist profile, as well as a piece on the history of Beautiful/Decay magazine. If you’re unfamiliar with By Osmosis, they are a boutique production company, specializing in profiling innovative creatives.