Thanks to all the artists who submitted work to our Future Perfect call for submissions. We had well over 250 submissions for every single state in the US varying in medium from kinetic installations to drawings. It’s going to be extremely difficult to select only 70 artists from all the amazing submissions. In the next week we will be contacting artists who have made it into the book as well as announcing the grand winner who will get their very own exclusive interview in Beautiful/Decay Book: 6. Thanks to our sponsorToyota Prius Projectsfor working with us to make the Future Perfect book happen and to promote and support new and emerging artists!
Jason Dussault is a Vancouver- and New York-based artist who uses the ancient medium of mosaics to recreate iconic images, many of which you will probably recall from your childhood. Among the shattered and beautifully arranged pieces — largely composed of ceramic, paint, grout, and resin — are the familiar visages of Batman, Thor, and the Hulk. Also depicted are important religious figures, including the Buddha and Jesus, as well as images of personal significance to Dussault; the hellhound “Fido,” for example, is a visualization of his inner, artistic strength. His masterful blending of colours and shapes create dimensional, intricate images that inspire both excitement and nostalgia.
In all of these works, Dussault has used the fractured and geometric power of the mosaic to manifest an “internal struggle,” a resistance against a world wherein magic has been stripped away by the realities of adulthood. By recreating memory-infused imagery from broken shards, Dussault’s craft serves as an active reclamation of “the magic, excitement, and hopefulness that stimulated his youth” (Source). Memory — and everything else that composes our emotional and physical lives — is fragile, but as Dussault shows us, it is never too late to recompose that which we think is broken or lost.
Dussault’s work is currently being featured in an exhibition entitled Deconstructive / Constructive at the Hoerle-Guggenheim Gallery in New York, which is running until April 2, 2015. Visit his website for more examples of his work.
Joe Black is an artist who uses Pop Art against itself. Collecting iconic imagery (often choosing those which have already been famously exploited by other artists), Black creates large-scale hued portraits using copious amounts of consumer items. One of many artists using collected masses of materials into larger mosiac-style works, Black claims that he is open to using any material as long as it is small and plentiful (past pieces have used Lego pieces, toy soldiers, pins, ball bearings, badges) and relates to the source image. These images, which are best seen from a distance of fifty feet, offer a contextual surprise for viewers upon closer inspection.
Though trained as an artist and painter, Black claims to be uncomfortable labeling himself a professional artist, preferring to consider his work more based on image-making and craftsmanship. One such aspect is the time-consuming application of several thousand smaller pieces which make up his whole images, which Black hand-alters by using aerosol to add tones that give gentle gradients which become the lines and shading of the portrait. (via u1u11)
Here are a few images from a 2009 fashion shoot by Eric Nehr modeled directly after the works of Egon Schiele. For some reason, these snaps expose Schiele’s notorious vanity even further. But of course no one does self portraits like he did, with his writhing, angular paintings full of turn-of-the-century angst. A nice tribute. (via)
Most people think of graffiti as a plague similar to weeds popping up all over your pristine yard. NYC artist Gina Dawson ran with this concept creating sculptures of dandelions and other assortments of weeds out of colored paper and installing them all over the city.Dawson’s take on graffiti is an interesting one with her works embracing the idea of graffiti as a plague and creating an unexpected and beautiful approach to one of our favorite urban blights.
We’ve covered Kris Kuksi’s Churchtanks series in the past, which invoked religion alongside symbols of modern warfare to create a curious blend of spirituality and the profane. “Ascension of Eos” is a more recent work, taking the exploration of larger than life mythos intersecting with the mortal coil.
Eos, the goddess of dawn in Greek mythology, or perhaps a statue of Eos rises up from a sea of humans. She’s being worshipped or built — or perhaps the two are one in the same. The humans around her are in a frenzy — some are tangled together in frantic sex, others are being crushed by wheels and impaled by arrows. Her congregation’s agony can just as easily be interpreted as divine ecstasy, and painted with a dark patine, the entire tableau seems truly gothic.
“I get inspired by the industrial world, all the rigidity of machinery, the network of pipes, wires, refineries, etc.,” says Kuksi. “Then I join that with an opposite of flowing graceful, harmonious, and pleasing design of the baroque and rococo.”
Beautiful, dark, and mysterious, Kuksi’s work contains tons of detail. It’s created through mixed media assemblage, which adds texture and physicality to the piece. At more than four and a half feet tall and three and a half feet wide, it looks almost like an altar or a memorial. (h/t Dark Silence in Suburbia)
Carolina Fontoura Alzaga is a multidisciplinary artist out of Los Angeles with a penchant for re-purposing castoff materials and exploring sociopolitical themes. She’s currently selling some chandeliers made from used bicycle chains at her Etsy page. You don’t even have to be into cycling to like these. The heavy chains almost give off a medieval vibe and they look like they give off some really nice, warm light. Looks like they’re being offered at some pretty affordable prices as well. (via)
Slinkachu has continued to carry out his poetic, mini street installations since we last checked in with him. The British artist continues to up the ante with each new, ephemeral piece. Employing miniature figurines and various objects, the artist stages tiny dramas (often humorous, and socially aware) in site-specific public locations. Click through to see some newer images of his “Little People Project” (previously) and some selections from the slightly older “Inner City Snail” series.