A bold claim made by Dutch artists Sander Plug and Lernert Engelberts, but fairly well deserved. Since their first collaboration, they have been working on commercials, leaders, art movies, documentaries and installations. Their aim is to make simple and communicative works, that takes little note of the existing border between contemporary art and commercial projects. Their highly esthetic, humorous and dedicated works are often challenging the media and its viewer, in a simple but very effective way. Check out some of their shorts after the jump! They all sort of share the same color palette and are nice in that way.
Fluid, pliable, and sleek—Guido Argentini’s models are not only painted silver, they look to be made of the molten metal. In his series “Argentum,” Argentini has gathered over 100 of his images of women covered in shiny silver makeup, which he began shooting in 1995. The collection is printed in his book, also called Argentum, published by teNeues.
Evoking the luminous polished planes of the work of Brancusi and the verve of Degas’ ballet sketches, these photographs endow the human body with both the solidity of sculpture and the vivid energy of dance.
Using geometrical props Guido Argentini created a contrast between the human body and the archetypal forms of geometry: triangles, circles and squares.
The metallic full-body paint is reminiscent of Pussy Galore’s iconic murder scene in the 1964 James Bond movie Goldfinger, as well as more recent images such as Kim Kardashian’s photo spreads in W. In Argentini’s feminine images the silver paint is used as an effect toward an artistic goal, not as the point of the photo, which is why they’re successful and memorable. “The skin, covered with silver paint, becomes an even, shiny surface and the human figure becomes more abstract,” Argentini writes. Without the distraction of skin tone and pores and body hair, the eye is captured by the models’ elegance and athleticism, their strong, contorted bodies juxtaposed against simple forms. The metallic sheen also heightens the contrast between highlights and darkness; we’re captivated by their agility and the sensuality of light and shadow moving across their bodies. (Via Scene 360’s Illusion)
Recognize the above image? Maybe the name Jesse Auersalo rings a bell? Give up? We featured Jesse in Issue Y, back when B/D was still a magazine… before we upgraded to our fancy limited edition book format. Well Jesse is giving a talk at AIGA/NY on Wednesday March 3rd, 6:30-8pm. This is Jesse’s first ever U.S. presentation! Be sure to check it out if you’re in the area. Also, you can go to our online shop and pick up a copy of Issue Y or grab the t-shirt Jesse designed. Just for fun, you can see more of Jesse’s illustrations after the jump.
The work of Los Angeles based artist Nike Schroeder is full of a complex hybrid of mediums, as she integrates textiles, painting, and installation into her art. Her installations are creates from fiber where the colors of the threads have a very intentional meaning, as they draw their palette from the hues of the horizon at dawn. In one installation, the thread cascades to the floor, dripping off the canvas. Schroeder includes this same aesthetic in many of her other works, including her embroidery. The artist creates portraits out of needle and thread, with certain colors of thread hanging loose so to draw your eye to certain areas. Often, these bright colors and hanging thread come from the subject’s eyes or lips. Other times, this thread is not hanging loose, but cutting across to the other side of the canvas, dissecting the composition with multi-colored fibers. The harsh line Schroeder imposes onto her portraits guides your eye to specific elements.
As if Schroeder’s fiber-based installations and intricate embroideries were not impressive enough, many of her textile pieces are extremely large. Her nude portraits of women, which examine the beauty ideals of the female body, are actually life-size! These, again, contain long, hanging thread pouring down from certain elements, jolting our eyes to an “unlikely” part of the women; their pubic hair. This series among others in Schroeder’s expansive body of work include not only thread but paint as well. The artist often applies paint like she does fiber, with flowing drips. Schroeder’s work can be seen on view at Walter Maciel Gallery in Los Angeles from May 30th through July 11th.
Casey Jex Smith makes work which draws images sacred to high-geekdom, art, and religion together until they are inseparable. I have been into his work since seeing it in person at the Drawing Center a couple of years ago. Some of Smith’s influences are: Dungeons & Dragons manuals, Agnes Martin paintings, Mormon architecture, and Sunday School flannel-board cut-outs. Casey and his wife – who is also an artist, Amanda Michelle Smith, both teach high school art in CA.
Bill Culbert’s work thoughtfully explores the perceptual interactions between light and the human eye. As a disciple of the mid-sixties British Experimentation movement, he utilizes discarded plastic goods and ready-made materials to construct the objects of his illumination. His photographs and sculptures have been exhibited over five decades, gaining wide recognition in New Zealand and Australia. He has been commissioned to do numerous public art works that emphasize light as a medium. Most recently. Culbert was included in a group show at Pace Wildenstein gallery along side some of the most well known light artists known today. Born in 1935 in Port Chalmers, New Zealand, he now lives between the South of France and London, England.
Anastasia Cazabon’s photos contain such compelling settings and backdrops that it feels very calm and serene. With a soft color palette, natural and living environments, she manifest dramatic, playful and melancholic imagery.