In the digital age and generation of the selfie, a spiraling and often disorienting importance placed on consumerism and commodities permeates even the most remote of regions. Through the billboard jungles and beehive of mass media, images relentlessly promoting youth and sexuality haphazardly depict ideals of femininity. Creating a wormhole of inadequacies, the female form has found itself in a constant tug-of-war in either defending its natural state or scrambling to correct propagated notions of aesthetic shortcomings. As Barbara Kruger famously stated on one of her notorious gelatin silver prints from the 1980’s, “You Are Not Yourself”.
Right off the bat, Venezuelan Nelson Garrido states the following: “To know limits is to begin to know that one does not have limits.” His work, brash and unapologetic, throws together Catholicism and American consumer culture, yielding incredibly fascinating results. Actually, to call his photographs “fascinating” would be an understatement. We’ll go with “riotous” after seeing Jesus depicted with three jumbo penises!
And for those with a strong stomach, check out one of his blog posts entitled “La Gruta de la Virgen.” You have been warned! This project in particular goes along with his passion for showcasing concepts deemed unacceptable by society.
Fionn McCabe’s tongue-in-cheek comic illustrations poke fun at the way art is received today. In “The Whole Thing” he seems to be criticizing the over-analyzing – and sometimes pretentious – art patrons, that can get in the way of artists’ real messages. (Though, ironically, this can only be gleaned by examining his work.) Though his more recent projects are more graphic in nature, his older works prove that he is also deft with more traditional mediums.
Light has always been an essential element in artist Hillary Wiedemann‘s work; her earlier projects exploring the relationship between light and glass, often bending, refracting and shaping light, with regular investigations into the seen, the unseen, the visible, and the nearly visible. Her installations have quickly matured into multi-sensory experiences that seem to evoke a sense of longing for the ability to make light a tangible thing.
Mary Jordan’s Water Tank Project brings to the New York skyline a beautiful and pertinent reminder that water is, in most respects, sacred. The project has brought glorious eye candy into the periphery, yet its first and foremost mission is to spread awareness regarding the dire water situation the majority of this world experiences.
The backstory to the effort reads like a movie: filmmaker Mary Jordan was working on a documentary in Ethiopia back in 2007. Three months in she became deathly ill from accidentally ingesting contaminated water. Nursed back to health by the women of the village she was living in, Jordan survived and was urged by these women to thank them through working to increase awareness on the water crisis within their country and the world.
One day, while back in New York, Jordan gazed up at a water tower and had an epiphany: “They’re like these little temples that hold water,” she thought, and realized the inherent symbolism of the structure itself, and the potential power to communicate that it held. Thus, the Water Tank Project was born. Jordan founded Word Above The Street, with the intent of utilizing the city’s water-related infrastructure to showcase water-related art and increase awareness.
The project gained an impressive level of momentum as artists Jeff Koons, Maya Lin, Andy Goldsworthy, Jeppe Hein, John Baldessari, and many, many others have signed up to produce graphic wraps for the over 100 water towers included in the project. With the tag line: Art Above NYC, Water Above All, Jordan is doing a remarkable job at fulfilling her promise, and getting you to think about your relationship with water and what effects the conservation of water can mean to those in countries less fortunate than ours.
Daniel St. George is a fine artist living in Brooklyn, NY who has steadily amassed a body of work that is equal parts entertaining, eclectic, and engrossing. St. George blends elements of collage, printmaking, painting, and drawing to create clever inverted representations of classic cartoon and pop icons; often placed into dynamic interaction with a found paperback leaf or music score in a personal, methodical context that is all his own.
These photographs are images of a unique museum collection. The Museum of Broken Relationships originally began as a project in Croatia by Zagreb based artists Olinka Vištica and Dražen Grubišić now tours internationally. While many may destroy the painful mementos of a failed relationship, the museum seeks to transform the impulse into a creative one. The museum points out other rituals such as funerals, marriages, and even graduation farewells while break-up do not have a formal ceremony. In a way the museum offers one to assist with the emotional impact of an ended reltionship. For this reason, the museum encourages people to donate personal belongings to be exhibited as “their love legacy as a sort of a ritual, a solemn ceremony.”