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Elizabeth Zvonar’s Collages And Sculptures Contemplate The Body’s Sexualized Relationship With Advertising

Elizabeth Zvonar - Collage

“Legs”. Digital LightJet print of a hand-cut collage (2007).

Elizabeth Zvonar - Sculpture

“This A Way”. Porcelain, custom glaze. 4 finger casts, 14″ (2013).

Elizabeth Zvonar - Collage

“Tulip”. Digital LightJet print of a hand-cut collage (2010).

Elizabeth Zvonar - Sculpture

“Cummy Loubous” (detail). Porcelain, custom glaze. 8.5″ pair of Mary Jane-style stiletto shoes (2013).

Elizabeth Zvonar is a Canadian artist whose collages and sculptures encounter us as objects of curiosity and contemplation. Her choice of mediums is vast, including brass, stone, porcelain, and hand-cut collage, but no matter what she creates, Zvonar’s work is tied together by a consistent style that is tactfully sexual, critically engaged, and subtly humorous. Her motifs include multiplicities of disembodied hands and fingers, magazine cutouts juxtaposing seductive imagery with the silly or strange, and high-fashion objects (such as porcelain high heels) splattered with a suggestive, white glaze. These works grab our attention and activate our minds, and this is precisely their intention. As Zvonar expresses in a fascinating interview with Here and Elsewhere,

“I like to make things strange and interesting to look at in order to engage. My method is tied to how advertising operates. I tend to use sex blatantly or metaphorically, mimicking advertising strategies [and] pushing the image/concept/work into unfamiliar territory.”

In this process of defamiliarization, Zvonar’s works become perceptual exercises in the effects of familiar and manipulative advertising imagery — the types of images that, as Zvonar acutely points out, inundate our waking lives “should one have their eyes open when walking down a street or in line at a grocery store” (Source). By removing idealized bodies and coveted material objects from their usual, seductive contexts and reconfiguring them in a socially aware manner, Zvonar’s creations cleverly critique the way fashion media and advertising operate on us by fragmenting and sexualizing the body.

Check out Zvonar’s website for a larger collection of her works, including a list of past exhibitions. If you’d like to learn more about her artistic themes and creative processes, I highly recommend reading the interview conducted by Here and Everywhere.

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Romain Lenancker

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Lenancker, out of France, uses colorful, crisp paper to create wonderful works of art. Usually interacting the paper creations with the human form, Lenancker adds dimension and playfulness to his aesthetic.

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Caleb Charland’s Photographs Of Electricity Made Out Of Fruit

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Caleb Charland (previously featured here and here) newest photography project features mesmerizing light displays using mostly fruit, a nail, copper wire, and the long exposure technique. These organic batteries produce enough of a current for Charland to capture the light’s illumination in these long exposure photographs.

“My current body of work, Back to Light, expands upon a classic grade school science project, the potato battery. By inserting a galvanized nail into one side of a potato and a copper wire in the other side a small electrical current is generated. The utter simplicity of this electrical phenomenon is endlessly fascinating for me. Many people have had the experience of drawing power from fruit in the classroom, and it never ceases to bring a smile to the face or a thought to the mind. This work speaks to a common curiosity we all have for how the world works as well as a global concern for the future of earth’s energy sources…my hope is that these photographs function as micro utopias by suggesting and illustrating the endless possibilities of alternative and sustainable energy production. The cycle that begins with the light of our closest star implanting organic materials with nutrients and energy, is re-routed in these images, Back to Light, illuminating earth once again.” (via this isn’t happiness)

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Malark’s work on the streets

The graphics-heavy street work of Malark, found primarily in and around London and Barcelona, dominates space with color block characters of quirk. But it’s not Malark’s attractive, sharp-toothed chroma buddies that make this stuff so special. What is so attractive about this artist is that he gets up relentlessly, and on all surfaces- walls, cars, trucks, storefronts; and, benevolently, our brains.

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The Sad Three-Eyed Boy Sculptures Of Seungchun Lim

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Korean artist Seungchun Lim creates life-size sculptures.  His work is steeped in narrative, each piece a character.  Seungchun’s sculptures are, in fact, part of a complex story.  The three eyed boy above is born with a hump in his back that turns out to be wings.  Eventually his wings are stolen from him.  Independent of their grand tale, Seungchun’s sculptures still exude an air lonliness and sadness.  His characters wordlessly communicate through their powerful but quiet imagery.

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Donna Pinckley’s Photos Of Interracial Couples And The Negative Things That People Say To Them

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A black and white photograph of a couple expressing nothing but tenderness and love. Donna Pinckley captures interracial couple posing naturally in front of their homes. Nothing should be perceived as wrong in these pictures, yet some people are not only condemning these individuals’ relationships but they are throwing hateful words at them. These can be read below the photographs, “as a reminder of how part of society sees them”.

After taking photographs of young children growing up through life, becoming adults and posing with their spouses, Donna Pinckley encountered a recurrent situation where women got to reveal the loathing comments they were facing because of their partner’s race. Her reaction to these women’s confidence has been artistic. She began to photograph interracial couples and depict their resilience and refusal to let others define them.

The couple are of all ages, and they represent any individuals in any country at any given time. This cold harsh reality is however counterbalanced by the message of hope these couples are giving us, via the mean of photography and the presence of Donna Pinckley behind it. A singular and effective way to spread a notion of tolerance and acceptance.  Despite the words, the looks and the attitude towards those relationships, the love and trust created by these couples is bursting and undeniable.

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CANSON WET PAINT GRANT RECIPIENT: Raul Gonzalez

If Raul Gonzalez had a soundtrack to accompany his drawings, it would be a mash up of old Disney movie themes, Death Metal and Mariachi music. It’s a bizarre mix of badass and cute, (cute like a two-year old giving you the finger) all on color splotched and stained pages that make you feel like you’re getting a secret look into Gonzalez’s personal sketch book. You can imagine the free-association process that went into each image, each element building, as if at some point Gonzalez thinks to himself, ‘it would be rad if the chicken was coughing up a human tooth,’ or ‘this guy should have a beat up severed head in one hand and a flaming cigarette in the other.’ And what may look like stains or scribbles reveal themselves to be crucial compositional devices that contribute to the overall success of each illustration. Best of all is the playful freedom: while the characters are often beheaded, impaled, beaten, or in some state of peril, there is always an aspect of humor and joy. Even if it’s the kind of joy some of us got from frying an ant hill with a magnifying glass as kids. Gonzalez brings to mind some of most underappreciated cartoons to hit the glowing screens in American homes, shows like Ren & Stimpy, Beevis and Butthead, and even Itchy & Scratchy on The Simpsons. Shows that are so awesomely gross and hilariously violent they pull at the heart strings of those of us who liked to poke dead things with a stick.

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We’re Moving So Watch Some Pellet Vids!

Hey everyone,
We just moved to our new amazing office and unfortunately our internet isn’t set up so excuse the lag in blog posts.We’ll try to post as much as we can during breaks from unpacking millions of boxes but in the meantime enjoy some fun animations by Pellet! We’ll be back up and posting in a day or two!

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