The subjects of Ridley Howard’s paintings dwell within a dreamy, still world that seems frozen in time. His figures are executed in simple but believable form; rounded at the edges and in soft focus, they are flawless characters suggestive of stylized CGI on the precipice of the uncanny valley. The scale of his paintings range dramatically, but regardless of size, his work feels intimate and yet enveloping. Abstract nooks of color takes form in between background corners – a crevice painted powder blue behind a man’s neck, a patch of yellow between two lover’s embracing. These details might initially go unnoticed, but the mood they provoke resounds.
It seems talent is coming at a younger age these days. At only 22 years old South Afcrian Paul Ward is a photographer to watch and follow with more work in his portfolio than most seasoned vets. His series of people simply looking at the camera and screaming is simple yet breathtaking group of images. Scream with Paul Ward and friends after the jump.
Photographer Joanne Leah works in “seduction, ritual, and tension”. Her pieces capture relationships, between two people or art and its viewer, as it alternately relaxes and strains. In the series featured in this post the angle of the light is severe recalling the chiaroscuro of baroque painting. The light, though, is cold, almost lonely, emphasizing the solitary figure in each photograph. Whether, the subject holds teeth in her palm or wields a knife a drama is clearly unfolding.
Franklin Evans examines the processes of making art—the generation of ideas and materials, their transformation from one to the other, and the many varied states in between. For this exhibition, he will present paintings, sculptures, photographs, and a sound piece in an all-encompassing environment. The wall paintings and collage environments of past installations, such as timecompressionmachine from Greater New York 2010 at MoMA PS1, have been collapsed by the artist and transferred to the surface of large-scale canvases. Mundane materials such as artist’s tape that previously played a key role as a barrier, frame, and drawing tool, are carefully recreated as trompe l’oeil representations, as the use of actual tape in the final compositions diminishes.
In the past, Evans has used gallery press releases to create a framing system presented as temporal floor sculpture. This practice has morphed into the usage of visual highlights from the artist’s gallery visits, captured online images, text highlights from books read over the past year, and scanned photographs from family albums. The viewer will discover various aspects of Evans, as an artist and a person: his childhood in Nevada, his mixed Mexican heritage, and his gay male identity. By focusing on the myriad visuals referencing the various aspects of Evans’ personae, some of these “peripheral” images remain on the periphery, while others become a focal point, as they do for indexicalmeasfocalscreen2012. The archive of hundreds of photographs is threaded to create an “image curtain” that divides the main gallery in two and which occupies an artistic space that builds on the Atlases of Aby Warburg and Gerhard Richter.
Entering this tandem exploration of periphery and focus, the viewer walks into the gallery over Evans’ sculptural “library”, an elevated floor and installation object in flux. It starts as a representation of the literal, moves to a residue of process, evolves as the ideas are extracted from the represented books, and settles into the sound piece 1967 in the main gallery room. 1967 consists of 350 fragments from his readings in the past year, ranging from Justin Spring’s biography of Samuel Steward, Secret Historian, to October Files’ Robert Rauschenberg. The text extractions are voiced by five performers and are played on random shuffle. Operating in the slippery non-linearity of memory, 1967 takes us back to Evans’ birth year. Eyesontheedge is on view at Sue Scott Gallery in NYC until April 15th, 2012
Munich, Germany based Cory Stevens shoots architectural photography in a peculiar way. He abstracts the architecture by photographing a segment of a building and reflecting it in various ways. In some photos the reflection is duplicated, and in others its repeated many times as if in a kaleidoscope. All of the reflections merge seamlessly, though, as if it were one floating structure. The strange symmetry gives the buildings an almost organic quality as if it were about to divide and multiply on its own. In a way, they resemble viruses made of steel, cement, and glass.
Photographer Edo Bertoglio was a pioneer of his time. He became involved in the scene in downtown New York in the 80s during a time of energy, creativity and luxury, and captured intimate moments of celebrities, art stars and night owls involved in that scene. His new book New York Polaroids 1976-1989 is a collection of those times and showcases a candid side to many people not rarely seen, and used the Polaroid camera in a way not commonly used. Bertoglio frequented clubs like CBGB and Studio 54, and snapped images of Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Grace Jones, Debbie Harry and Madonna. In fact, one image that Bertoglio had taken of Madonna was meant to be the cover for her Like A Virgin record, until the producers had a change of heart at the last moment.
He used the Polaroid SX70 because it was a portable, durable, instant camera, and meant that Bertoglio could easily travel at his will – from vacations to Greece or Porto Rico, to spontaneous motorcycle trips to Staten Island – and take photos easily. The native Swiss photographer has exploited the characteristics of the polaroid camera and used them as stylistic nuances. Blurs, light flares, and unexpected color spots become a feature of his work.
He infuses many of his polaroids with a distinctive pop quality, hyper-real, pre-digital, playing with an unmistakable intertwining of silhouettes and intense, lively, counterposed tones, faded mono- chrome atmospheres, clear-cut juxtapositions of subjects, forms and colors, close-ups and backgrounds. He has synthesized the narcissistic and decadent hue of his time.
His book is available to purchase here at Yard Press.
Waiting For Hockney is the story of what hard work, a bit of misguidedness, and a giant dash of dillusion can do for an aspiring artist. If you’re an artist you need to watch this film. Rent it on Netflix or oder it on the documentaries website. Read the the official synopsis below and watch the film trailer after the jump.
Waiting For Hockney is a comic and poignant tale of a man and the people who believe in him as they collude and collide for an entire decade in the service of a grand idea. The film explores the sometimes precarious line between dreams and delusion as it looks at the risks, payoffs and consequences when one man single-mindedly pursues his vision. Billy Pappas is a true American original. An art school graduate from a working class background living in rural Maryland, Billy has decided that his mission in life is to reinvent realism. He spends eight years on a single drawing of Marilyn Monroe working to show a microscopic level of detail he hopes will reveal something deeper than photography. Literally, he hopes to create a new art form. Aided, one might even say enabled, by an eccentric cast of characters including a clergyman, a professor and an architect calling himself “Dr. Lifestyle,” Billy finally completes the portrait and then begins a quest to show it to renowned contemporary artist David Hockney, the one person he thinks can validate everything for which Billy has been striving.