Blair Whiteford lives and works in New York. His fragmented paintings blur the line between figuration and abstract expressionism like the Bay Area Figurative Movement in the 1950’s. In his own words, “I am interested in the way that a body interacts with its surroundings. The images that I create depict bodies and spaces that are constantly being altered by a hypothetical understanding of the space that the figures are experiencing. While creating my recent body of work I have been particularly interested in the space that exists in between non-objective abstraction and representation, allowing the two to transform into one another throughout the paintings.”
So these guys at Resn kill it, and say it best themselves…. “Resn believes in creating pretty things from absolutely nothing… is that possible? To drive hard without brakes and crash in a fiery ball of flaming metal as brakes are for losers. Holding your head close to the speakers stack at Concert of Life all you hear is the bass, which makes you go deaf. So don’t be silly, stand at the back with us where all the hot chicks dance. Away from all the sweaty people.” They have a point. Make sure to check out more of these crazy New Zealand Kiwis.
It doesn’t get better than being loved by a fluffy, soft animal. It is said that the love between a guardian and their pet is unconditional; an-almost familial bond that grows bigger and tighter as time goes on.
Thirteen years ago, Japanese photographer Miyoko Ihara began snapping pictures of her now 88-year-old grandmother, Misao, and her odd-eyed kitten, Fukumaru. Misao, a farmer and merchant of fresh vegetables, found the cat abandoned in a shed, and the pair has been inseparable since then. She named the cat ‘Fukumaru” in hope that “God of fuku (good fortune) would follow her. Lucky for the 88-year old MIsao, Fukumaru stayed by her side through hard work and disability. They simply make their life better just by being together. The photographs are just a gilmpse at how wonderful, and important their friendship is to each other.
The photographer Sarah Anne Johnson snaps shots of the most intimate kind, asking friends and acquaintances to sit for her while engaging in sexual activity: intercourse, foreplay, kissing, masturbation. Later, the artist enters into a new kind of dialogue with the erotic photos, covering her portraits in glitter and gold plate or scratching away their emulsion in strategic places.
The form of Johnson’s series, titled Wanderlust, brilliantly echoes its content. In penetrating the materiality of the photographic medium by altering its surface, Johnson makes as much of a statement about artistic or creative lust than she does about human sexuality. The gently cracked, ashy layer of a burnt chromogenic print mirrors a lover’s tender caress; similarly, a halo of scratches parallels a couple’s orgiastic pleasure.
Despite Johnson’s unconventional process—perhaps even because of it—Wanderlust seems a powerfully honest rendering of sexual intimacy. At times, human closeness becomes cosmically infinite, a moment of love solidified in gold plate or starry glitter. But many of the photographs complicate the notion of what it means to be truly vulnerable; often, her collage work obscures and flattens one lover, leaving his or her partner alone, isolated in the frame and utterly naked.
Johnson’s work relies on this tension between connection and isolation, a theme which serves to imbue the series with a palpable sense of sexual tension; for instance, two bodies are deconstructed in Puzzle Pieces, formatted to appear unified under one complex and paradoxically disjointed aesthetic. Simultaneously penetrating the viewer and and leaving us to gasp for air, the body of work is a must-see. It is currently on view at Toronto’s Stephen Bulger Gallery. (via Art in America and Feature Shoot)
Chris Maynard‘s tools of trade include a scalpel, forceps, and a love for the literal art of flight. With a deft hand, he etches delicate shapes and patterns into shed feathers, transforming them into more than just a part of a whole. In doing so, he coaxes out the secret lives of birds.
“My work with feathers gives me a satisfying perch from which to view the world,” Maynard says in his artist’s bio.
Maynard’s art is nothing short of celebratory at times: Six feathers arranged with miniature songbirds in mid-flight. Others are a peek into the everyday life, such as a bisected feather yielding the tiny form of a robin working industriously on catching the early worm.
With the kind of precision needed for such minute knifework, each piece could have easily been sterile and dispassionate. Instead, they are each joyful in their own way, from the flurry of movement of a flock of birds circling a roost to the burst of sapphire blue on a peacock’s plume.
Though the feathers were discarded, shed, or forgotten by their previous owners, Maynard has given them new flight. (via This Is Colossal)
Brazilian artist Angelica Dass has an ambitious project, titled Humanæ, that attempts to collect all possible human skin tones using one of the main systems of color classification, Pantone®. The background of the portraits are all dyed with the Pantone® color that matches the same color as an extracted sample of the subject’s photographed skin tone. Dass’ ultimate goal is to provoke the viewer and use the internet as a discussion platform on ethnic identity by creating images that connect us independent from factors such as nationality, origin, economic status, age, or aesthetic standards. Dass lives and works in Madrid.
Ashley Bickerton’s current show Nocturnes freatures paintings and c-prints that reveal the sordid gutters of paradise; a fractured world illuminated by neon and laden with lost boys, bloated sex tourists, escapist degenerates and opportunists. Nocturnes is up at Lehmann Maupin Gallery in NYC through June 25th.