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Painter Jenny Morgan Looks At Life Through Rose-Colored Glasses

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Jenny Morgan’s paintings are cool portraits of women (mostly self) and other odd figures that seem to recall kool-aid acid test colors and the feelings that go along with them. They speak to a lighthearted whimsey which looks at the fairer sex through rose colored glasses. The one thing the viewer notices is the positive energy which flows from them. Even though based in true realism Morgan messes the canvas up a bit with her odd use of color in places that might symbolize different feelings and aspects of someone’s personality.
Her titles give hints to some of the narratives. “Venus in Furs” is especially telling. For those who do not know the title is taken from a story about a man so obsessed with a woman that he offers himself up to her as slave. In Morgan’s rendition she incorporates a cat which is a funny metaphor to how most cat owners become willing slaves to their fur ball. In another called “Everything will be Okay” a woman is painted with a skull on top of her head and a tear in her eye. It might explain in a lighthearted way what it means to be able to overcome heartache. The key in Morgan’s case is to use the mind to find clarity over the body or aka emotion.
Morgan was born in Salt Lake City, Utah. She currently holds an mfa from The School of Visual Arts. She has exhibited her work worldwide including group shows at the Smithsonian Portrait Gallery, Museum of Contemporary Art Jacksonville and Postmasters Gallery in New York.

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FUCO UEDA

I’m absolutely loving these sleepy narrative illustrations by Japanese artists Fuco Ueda. It’s as if each painting was painted with the tears of fairies from a far away distant land where animals and cute teenagers lived as equals.

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Daniel Firman

I’m really shocked by how life-like (and well-dressed!) these plaster figures are– what a great art and fashion combo. He also balanced a taxidermied elephant on her trunk, proving something that seems outside the realm of possibility by what we think we know about gravity.

(Photo courtesy Neotorama)

Alright, that’s it for taxidermy! I’ve maxxxed out!

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Kara Joslyn’s Quietly Emotional Paintings

CCA grad Kara Joslyn is based in Oakland. Joslyn works mostly in black and white and mixed media to create stark, quietly emotional paintings. There’s a lot of hardened dignity in the artist’s work. The black and white depictions here of crumbling stone, ancient pottery, and dried parcels of wood can’t help but lend a resolute seriousness to each painting. This (and their stunning visual qualities) allows them to be taken in with purpose, as though something very special is captured and any time spent with the work is not wasted. By rendering material which was once strong and hard in a state of brokenness and neglect,  Joslyn brings us to considerations of the inevitable effects of neglect and time, and the realization that hardly anything remains prominent forever.

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Ben Grasso

proposal_6Ben Grasso is wired for telekinesis.  Before painting he warms up, surrounded by mystic runes and burning incense, by bending spoons with his mind.  Just kidding, but that is what I want to believe.  His paintings are filled with magical forces; it’s to do with buildings and de/construction, but there are other characters – namely beer cans, explosions, and scarecrows.  It’s entertaining to be presented with something walking the fine line between real and totally illusory, Grasso is making work in that sweet spot.

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Max Wittert

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Four score and seven years ago, shortly after college, I worked a certain retail job at a company that shall not be named (American Apparel) and had the pleasure of working with Max Wittert. Max was famous store-wide for his amazing and humorous doodles lampooning everyone who came into the store…and all of us employees. Max…I would kill to find those illustrations again, do you still have them? Anyway, we ran into each other again after many a long year at the Renegade Craft Fair last weekend, and much to my delight I discovered he’s now following his heart working as an illustrator. Wonderful work!

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Quayola Digitally Deconstructs Baroque Masterpieces

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Strata #4 – Site-Specific Installation from Quayola on Vimeo.

Strata #4 is a two channel video by the artist known simply as Quayola.  For the video, Quayola used images of two grand altarpieces by Rubens and Van Dyck.  He worked with an HDR photographer to obtain huge 20,000 by 20,000 pixel images of the work.  Then using unbelievable computing power and algorithms Quayloa investigates each masterpiece’s underlying structure, composition, and color.  Strata #4 at turn resembles 20th century abstract renditions of the baroque work.  Yet his video squarely part of a New Aesthetic, part of a 21st century sensibility.

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Norman Mooney’s Explosive Burst Sculptures

NYC based artist Norman Mooney makes works that are at once physical and metaphysical. His works explore the elemental and cyclical synergies of nature. Materiality, pattern, scale and experience are key concerns within his practice. Although he works in a wide array of materials his massive burst sculptures are completely jaw dropping. Radiating from every angle these incredible explosions shimmer and shine like a star far off in the galaxy. (via)

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