I’m not very knowledgeable in the field of commercial photography, but there’s something subtly funny about many of Bryce Duffy’s photographs. In fact, it seems a bit stupid to even call it “commercial” photography vs. just plain old photography. I guess the difference is that you can hire Duffy to create his artwork for you to particular ends. However, in most of his work there’s a sort of looming 70’s kitsch hilarity lurking just under the surface. Burt Reynolds photographed under a giant painting of himself? Genius!
German artist Felix Schramm likes to make sculptures that confuse you. He uses pieces of drywood, paint, steel frames and paint to recreate parts of architecture matching the space that they inhabit, but are very different than what you would expect. His highly formalized sculptures are a bit like architecture that has stopped pretending to hold itself up. They can be huge chunks of material that have been dumped in the room from a construction site by accident, or shoved through the wall like an art install that has gone bad. Resembling crumpled paper, or layers of torn posters on a lamp post, Schramm makes subtle comments about space, form, structure and the nature of materials with his work.
These group of photos are from a series called ‘Intersection’, and act exactly as that – they intersect, interrupt and divide the space like we wouldn’t expect. The sculptural fragments are reminders of the temporal spaces we inhabit – that architecture is only a fabrication and is easily destructible. These splinters of construction serve to disorientate the viewer. Schramm is able to warp our understanding of these mundane spaces purely by placing chunks of industrial material where they shouldn’t be.
The destroyed fragments of drywall wrapping themselves around existing columns and leaning butted up against pristine gallery walls are beautifully disturbing. Schramm’s work also features formalized ceramics, pieces made from plaster and paint, and smaller versions of ruined architecture. His installations act as a visual reminder of the grey area between chaos and order. These large scale replicas are both gently delicate and immensely strong. To see more contradictions and opposites at play against each other in Schramm’s work, go here.
Stockholm, Sweden based artist Joakim Ojanen works in mediums as diverse as sculpture and zines. His paintings, however, particularly standout. Familiar snippets of cartoon characters, body parts, and shapes congeal as a hallucinatory mass. Normally lighthearted characters appear to be in a paranoid panic or a manic giddiness. Eyeballs peek from oddly placed holes or simply roll on the ground. Ojanen’s portraits don’t seem to depict monsters as much as characters mutated by abstraction.
Austin Watts’ work reminds us of all the finer things the 80’s had to offer, like VCRs and Huey Lewis. It’s that fabulous, American Psycho lifestyle that Bateman personified so well, minus, of course, that nasty business about human mutilation. His unique aesthetic has attracted some big names, including MTV, and we’re excited to see where Watts will go next–as long as it’s not to his remote storage unit where he hides the bodies.
Mark Warren Jacques just released this doozy of a geometric-nostalgic silkscreen. Mark’s directions for use? “Order; get excited for mail; tell the mail man thanks; open & hang on wall (near plants and sunshine if possible); stare at often until you become tired and ready for sleep; fall asleep.” Available for a mere $35 (along with some other nice prints) here.
In the city of Tarragona, Spain, castellers gather every two years to see who can build the highest, most intricate human castles. It requires astonishing strength, finesse, and balance.
Karin Waskiewicz‘s paintings directly address the physical properties of painting utilizing both conventional and unconventional methods. Waskiewicz’s process beings with acrylic paint applied in thick layers creating a collection of colors to later be unveiled. After the layers are applied, one mark is made. Every mark is a reaction to the shape, placement, and color of the previous marks made. The painting emerges from dry paint as she carves away, excavating the thick surface, intuitively revealing and investigating the depth of the paint, creating a world in paint alone. These paintings reflect formations found in the natural world and the shapes created are both organic and formulated. The repetition of marks connects visually and gives the paintings a vibrational quality and mimic movement. See Karins work in a group show opening April 26th in NYC at Schroeder Romero & Shredder.
Roxanne Jackson creates some fantastically creepy ceramic work.