The self-assigned categories of his work are funny, “recent quite recent not so recent old very old”. These are very human terms.
Pennsylvania based artist Peter Olson has merged the ancient tradition of pottery as narrative and panoramic photography. As a professional photographer who has traveled “the world many times over,” Peter Olson has documented and experienced an extensive array of cultures and environments. Through out his journeys, from “corporate culture to religious iconography, he finds meaning in the repetition of human expression.” Each image is taken from a moment in his life, from his point of view. His pottery series, titled Photo Ceramica, refers to each piece as an “urn.” Defining the pieces as such almost allows every individualized work to act as a ceremonial ending to a specific point in time. The urns are, perhaps, a way for the artist to collect and put to rest certain times in his life. His work is created by transferring images onto the ceramic by encasing them in ink left over from his photographic prints. When the urns are then fired, the ink burns away, leaving an image from the iron oxide in which the ink is created from. The aesthetic is formed through a sort of collage, depicting personalized narratives and motifs. For example, his work “New York City Urn No. 8” is a panoramic view of the city, starting with the the iconic city street lamps, followed by a amalgamation of classic New York City imagery such as the city sky line from various points of reference along with more personalized moments including a portrait of women standing in front of graffiti. Peter Olson has created a delicate, shrine like body of work that allows him to document his own life by intimate and clever means. (via Hi Frustose)
Judy Miller’s Imaginary Dioramas series is the kind of work that makes you think, “Wait, what?” The famous faces in the photos are recognizable, but off in some subtle way. The backgrounds are ambiguous, and the combinations of celebrities and scenes, “Outakes” as they’re titled, create curious narratives.
It’s almost a relief to find out that these artists and celebrities, whose faces we’re so familiar with, are actually wax figures photographed at Madame Tussaud’s and Photoshopped into scenes. The strangeness abates, but only briefly. It’s not only the waxy visages that are uncanny, but the situations as well. Most of the celebrities are not named or tagged, which presumes a certain amount of pop-culture familiarity in the viewer. Some photos only include a part of a face or body, making the identification even more difficult.
Robert E. Knight, Executive Director of the Tucson Museum of Art, writes, “Judy Miller does not create her work in the isolation of a studio. She researches, travels, photo¬graphs, and then brings her images back in-house for final editing. Culled from the photo files of celebrity wax figures the artist has compiled over the years, Miller cleverly inserts her figures into fantasy settings with the finished composites ranging from humorous to odd, and compelling to camp. … Resembling excerpted film stills, the discordant emotional separation of Miller’s figures are in¬triguing in their awkward uncertainty. They truly have become actors in her play, and they’re just waiting for their cue. Even titling her images as “outtakes” references the artist’s interest in, and respect for, the influence films have had on our society.
What, for example, are Einstein and Picasso doing dressed alike, deliberately avoiding eye contact in a round room with many windows in “Newton’s Nightmare”?? Seemingly less bizarre is “Outtake #22, Exit Left”, which shows Jacqueline Kennedy facing front in the foreground and Marilyn Monroe’s red sequined back in the background. It’s easier to find context for this work but no less thought provoking. What if the two women really did meet? Each image poses unanswerable questions, which is Miller’s intention.
My goal is to create a dynamic juxtaposition of elements that spark individual interpretation.
The internet is currently swarming with stories, tributes, and memorials to the late, great Robin Williams who passed 3 days ago. Some people may not know that in addition to being an actor, comedian, activist, and improv performer, Williams was also an unabashed lover of video games, comic books, and graphic novels, and that this loss resonates throughout these communities as well. Yesterday, Nick Gazin over at Vice posted crowd-sourced illustrations that pay tribute to the performer, his characters, and his life. (via vice)
Mathy art. Photographer Kelly Castro (pictures) and artist Santiago Ortiz (collage) bring you “Love is Patient,” this interactive collage of photographs that’s based on a principle called the Voronoi algorithm, which involves polygons and points equidistant to other points, (I won’t even try to explain, try wiki if you feel inclined.) Ultimately, you get this cool ever-changing mash-up of black and white portraits where you’ll never see the same face twice.
Garrett Pruter constructs architecutral wonders with collage and drawing techniques. He combines graphite and acrylic on top of collage to create mini villages on the page. I wouldn’t be surprised if there were mini civilizations occupying his turn-of-the-century cityscapes. He is currently studying Illustration at Parsons School of Design.
Ukranian illustrator Dehfolt Sister has a nice portfolio of digital collages.
Alex Da Corte is a Philadelphia-based installation artist who recently created a “dollhouse” of fragmented memories and rainbow-colored horrors out of Luxembourg & Dayan‘s three-story townhouse in New York. Entitled “Die Hexe” (German for “The Witch”), Da Corte’s work guided the visitor on a hallucinogenic journey through a mash-up of absurdist cultural and historical imagery: a wooden rocking chair with overlapping backs; a section of Nicolas Poussin’s Midas and Bacchus beside a coffee shaped like a bondage-clad stripper; and a dove sitting atop a pair of goaltender masks reminiscent of Friday the 13th’s Jason.
The experience went something like this: a drain by Robert Gober was viewed through a peephole in the foyer. From there on, the visitor passed through a series of rooms and hallways filled with seemingly disconnected artifacts — from the mundane, to the absurd, to works of art by Haim Steinbach (who created the “framing devices”, or shelves) and Bjarne Melgaard (the stripper coffee table) (Source). The final room featured green tiles nauseatingly reminiscent of the place where Kurt Cobain shot himself. By overwhelming the visitor with strange imagery that haunts the imagination on an almost subconscious level, “Die Hexe” evoked a variety of emotions and sensations: fear, repulsion, delight, and desire.
Da Corte’s rooms drew on more personal memories, as well. As Luxembourg & Dayan’s press release reveals, “Die Hexe” included “a pantry smelling of spices and filled with anonymous products,” recalling the artist’s grandfathers, who both “worked along the food supply chain” (Source). Elsewhere, Da Corte has transferred childhood emotions into objects remindful of his grandmother’s house, including “craft-based décor such as woven rugs, quilt patterns, and wreathes.” Such intimate artifacts, when coupled with dislocated bits of cultural imagery, express identity as a patchwork, one that repeatedly falls apart and is sewn together again by memories and emotion.
While “Die Hexe” ended April 11th, you are not out of luck; Da Corte will be opening his first museum solo exhibition at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in March 2016. For more pictures and thoughts on “Die Hexe,” check out Hi-Fructose’s fascinating summary, as well as this insightful article on artnet News. (Via Hi-Fructose).