“Deep Water” (2006). Acrylic on canvas, 56” x 50”.
“Dare Devil” (2004). Acrylic on canvas, 29” x 42”.
“Brother’s Keeper” (2012). Acrylic on canvas, 60” x 60”.
“Incredule (redux)” (2010). Watercolour on paper, 26” x 36”.
Daniel Barkley is a Canadian artist who explores the physicality of the human figure and its relationship to mythology and the history of art. Recurring among his paintings are nude, predominately male bodies depicted in scenes of both visceral power and stunning vulnerability. Whether drawing in the dirt, lying prone on the ice, or anointing themselves with mud or paint, the characters appear to be engaged in profound rituals of unknown meaning. Barkley’s work captures the emotion of the event, as well as the role of flesh and muscle in the enactment of human spirituality.
By presenting his characters nude, Barkley explores narratives that are powerful and mythological in their appearance, but open to analysis and extrapolation. “Clothes denote social class, profession, period, gender, age, etc.,” Barkley states in his website’s Artist’s Statement. “By eliminating them, paring down the mise-en-scene, the interpretation of the narrative is broadened to hopefully include the viewer’s own speculations.” Caught between states of intimacy and theatricality, Barkley’s nude figures operate as metaphorical expressions of the pain and passion that has shaped Western mythology.
More of Barkley’s incredible work — spanning over a decade — can be found here. (Via Juxtapoz)
Welcome to Okinawa, Asia’s hidden treasure that many don’t know about but should. The name Okinawa means “Rope in the open sea” which is an apt description for this series of 160 islands (49 inhabited and 111 uninhabited) that is quickly becoming known as the ultimate vacation spot for those who don’t want to visit the same old tourist traps that most people frequent.
With Okinawa being such an exotic local it’s no wonder that seven thrill-seeking travelers from seven countries banded together to make a lifetime voyage to the islands.This series of eight videos followers these travelers as they experience the many sites, sounds and tastes of the islands unique cultural offerings. In the above video Russian model and dancer Maria Bessonova gets introduced to the beauty of the traditional Ryukyu dance. Ryukyu dance first developed in the time of the Ryukyuan kingdom. Known as a graceful and dynamic expression of the Okinawa soul, the elegant dance not only explores classical tales but also everyday life. As Maria learns about the dance she visits a Bingata Kimono workshop and ultimately gets to perform one of Okinawa’s most famous cultural offerings
Take a break from the studio today and join the cast of Okinawa as they explore the unique, the unknown, and the exotic offerings of Asia’s best kept secret. Now that’s tropical bliss!
The first life size skull hand made from a rare crystallized meteorite ‘Gibeon’. This unique piece has been realized by Lee Downey; an American jeweler artist, whose purpose is the celebrate the mystery of the human skull and its numerous symbols and interpretations. The astonishing piece will be auctioned by Bonhams on November 24th 2015 and has already been estimated at around $400,000.
The process started out by cutting and carving down a block of meteorite (617 lbs) into a 46 lbs skull. The precious artifact is called ‘Gibeon’. A meteorite of 4 million years old, dating from the prehistorical era and founded in the Namibia region. The coveted material is renowned for his crystal structure and its singular ‘Widmanstätten’ pattern. A motif unveilinga repetition of matte and glossy stripes imitating metal. The intricate work of polishing and washing the carved skull revealed an unexpected insertion on its forehead classified as ‘Tridymite’, a rare component.
Lee Downey, now residing in Bali, through his work, has brought out never seen before features on the texture of this particular meteorite. The reflection of the light onto the multi-faceted inclusions creates a shimmery luxurious aspect. The fact that the surface, including the gold insertion, is pure; confers to the skull an exceptional uncommon value. “Of any material I could think of to fashion an accurate human skull out of, this Gibeon meteorite best embodies the “mystery” most acutely. I call him The Traveler… a true time traveler”. The artist’s intention in presenting the symbol of death with an ageless, immortal material is to focus on spiritual consciousness and the definition of eternity.
“First tree” represents the awareness of our existence, one that sits upon us like the world on our shoulders.
The Blue Tree questions who and what we are.
The Tree of Man, we are all connected.
The erotic art of Sydney Australia based Garth Knight entails a series of six suspended ‘trees’ ( in order: first, blue,heart, man, lost, and red) all which are made out of rocks and ropes. Each individual “tree” is created over one or two naked bodies, often posing in very sensual positions. If the ‘trees’ are observed in order, they create a linear narrative- one that tells, through stunning and innovative imagery, the story of human existence. The artists accompanies his images with text; the words further narrate the story he is trying to tell.
Knights multi-disciplinary practice covers various areas including installation, sculpture, and photo media. As you can acknowledge from the photos shown here, his works often (almost always) include the use of rope bondage, amongst other erotic elements that mesh with ideas of strength, pleasure, and sexuality. You can check out more of his works on here.(via Beautiful.Bizzare Magazine)
Julia Fox, artist and head designer of Franziska Fox, recently released a graphic, autobiographical art book titled Heartburn/Nausea. The book acts as a character sketch, exposing flashes of intimate details that add up to mold a vision of a troubled girl. There is no hesitation between honesty and story telling, as this book is a collection of literal documents from the artist’s life. The book is extremely raw and almost devastatingly personal. She invites us into her own past, for just a moment, allowing us to truly have an experience through her memories.
RH: The book is autobiographical, extremely graphic and exposes probably the most intimate moments of your life. What made you want to share these moments?
JF: I believe that when you share something with someone it is no longer yours. I was tired of carrying it so I gave it away.
RH: Do you feel like the book falls under confession, warning, or exposé? Or perhaps, none of those. Maybe its something entirely different.
JF: I don’t know… It’s just a picture book of artifacts and stuff I have collected over the years. I’m not sure what the message behind it is. I guess since my life is so different now and I’m somewhat successful and happy, the message is that it’s ok to be fucked up. It’s ok to have a past.
And more importantly it’s ok to show your vulnerability and your weaknesses. And if you are fucked up and able to use it to your advantage, you are probably more interesting and insightful than most. So just like don’t be ashamed of yourself.
RH: Does the work aim to address mental illness at all?
JF: I think indirectly it does. I am bipolar. I think being untreated as an adolescent had a huge impact on my life. I’m very impulsive. I do what I want, when I want and when I want something, I want it now. I live in the moment and never take into consideration the consequences. I’m more or less still the same, the only difference is that the things I want have changed.
RH: It seems the book touches upon the borders between love, intimacy and obsession. Can you talk, just briefly, about these relationships at all. Do you believe healthy love, or love in of itself, exists?
JF: I do believe in healthy love. I just think it’s boring. To be completely honest, I have such a good time on my own that for me to want to be with someone else it better be one hell of a ride. I better feel everything and I better feel pain and in turn learn something new. Otherwise I’m ok being with just me. I’m a good time, in my opinion.
Illustrator and comics artist Jesse Lonergan is drawing a “Dancer a Day”. Every day, he draws an icon from movies, music, cartoons, pop culture, etc. in a “dancing pose”. He posts the quick sketches to his “Dancer a Day” blog. Just a really fun, loose project. Who doesn’t dig the image of a groovy Hannibal Lecter or a b-boy Gonzo? What about a super fab “The Dude”, or Godzilla and the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man cutting a rug on top of a metropolis? Some more selections after the jump and head over to the page itself, where Lonergan’s already amassed a pretty large collection of dancers. (via)
Steve Turner Contemporary will be exhibiting Mark Dutcher’s works February 14th- March 21st in a show entitled, “Havilah.” Havilah is taken from the mountain community in Northern Kern County that has a rich mining history- once a city of abundance and big dreams, Halivah is now a sleepy ghost town off the beaten path. I like this concept. The works themselves don’t necessarily reflect the title directly, but I like them for their vibrant colors and controlled messyness- plus they use feathers!
Seattle based artist Vincent Pacheco also known as “Mudchicken” creates beautiful mixed media collages and paintings. These cigarette paintings are hilarious. I feel the cancer coming on just by looking at them.