Paris-based Lebanese Illustrator and artist Lamia Ziadé has a “Pop Art” style identified by bright patterns and childishly feminine materials. She is a fan of playing with the historically and socially inappropriate- depicting women flaunting their sexuality, engaging the viewer’s curiosity in the subject’s (often deadpan) gaze. Her work seems to also be concerned with war: she participated in an exhibition titled “Hotel’s War”, addressing the 1970s when different militias involved in the war took over several luxurious hotels in Beirut and forcefully transformed them into their own territory.
The other day I ran around to get some food and look at some art. But before I got the art viewing festivities started, I decided to go down to the nonofficial “Bicycle District” to get some food and more importantly some delicious dessert. If you live in LA, you know how quickly this neighborhood has transformed in just a couple of years. Everyone loves this area as evident by the above graffiti.
Artist Lauren Tickle uses an unconventional material for her accessories: US currency. Titled Increasing Value, the objects are made out of bills, silver, latex, and more, formed into intricate pieces that you can actually wear. Tickle has her Master’s degree in jewelry, and the exquisite works don’t immediately strike the viewer as being composed of currency. Instead, the designs take advantage of the bold flourishes we see on money and the green lines appear as a pattern rather than a past president’s face.
Tickle writes about the conceptual meaning behind her work, which is titled based on how much currency was used in its creation.
My work is an experiment in the concepts of value and adornment. The Values Exploration process takes currency of defined value, distills it to graphic elements, then resynthesizes an object of much greater value. How and why are these notes distanced from their face value? Idea, concept, process, and labor create value. Is this new, finished form a microcosm of industrial production? or a parody?
I force wearers and observers to reflect on the concept of adornment in our society. One of the most conscious actions humans undertake is the decision of what to wear or not. My work takes underlying materialism and makes it explicit, imploring evaluation from all sides in each social context. (via Escape Kit)
Korean artist Do Ho Suh has often explored thoughts on collective strength (and perhaps weakness) in his work before. However, his new sculpture Karma addresses a more personal collectivity. This enormous sculpture seems to stretch on perpetually. At the sculpture’s base a man stands with his eyes covered by another man crouching on his back. That man’s eyes are also covered by another man crouching on his back and this pattern appears to repeat ad infinitum. Perhaps a literal visual interpretation of the concept of karma or even the saying ‘history is doomed to repeat itself’.
Darryl Cox is an artist living in Bend, Oregon, who grafts tree limbs onto vintage frames. Each “Fusion Frame,” as he calls them, involves a combination of woodworking, painting, and sculpting to ensure the branch “sprouts” seamlessly from the man-made object. After locating a unique frame, Cox then searches the forest for the complementary limb. Each art piece is unique and expressive, giving the static object a sense of organic vitality. The branch warps the frame and twists the molding in its own dramatic way, seeming to overtake the rigid boundaries and thus demonstrating the power and patience of nature.
Cox seeks to create art that is humble, distinctive, and intricate. Originality is key, which means bypassing ingrained artistic customs and modes of thought. He discusses this further in his artist’s statement:
“As much as I embrace convention in art, and I certainly do, my Fusion Frame art fulfills the part of me that says ‘no’ to convention. That it is not only okay to be avant-garde, it is right. I like to embrace alternatives to an accepted order in art. To even, at times, completely ignore conventions when fashioning a piece and enjoy the unbounded ability to create by refusing to be limited by precept, artistically speaking.” (Source)
Some of the Fusion Frames are tailored with sentimental objects, lending them even more unique emotional value. You can learn more about Cox’s work on his website and Facebook, and he has works available for purchase on his Etsy. (Via Colossal)
Aldis Ozolins is a maker of zines, posters, and experimental illustrations that represent memories from the place he was born: Riga, Latvia. While Aldis’ current professional direction and focus is on graphic design and interactive experiences (both of which he is damn good at), we chose to feature his illustrative work and side-projects due to the strong emotional qualities embedded so clearly within each of the pieces. It’s easy to get lost in the figures and environments his images bring to life… enjoy a selection after the jump.
Hyper-realism reaches a point of surreal alienation in New Zealand-born Peter Stichbury’s paintings. These alienated and alienating faces, doll-like and expressionless, detail what could be a new race of clones, mannequins, or digitally rendered animations. Well-dressed, exceedingly manicured, completely devoid of facial emotion, their middle gaze lost on an unknown point, they carry an unsettling quality about them. Too clean and too polished, there is an unwelcoming aspect permeating from their presence. They emit either ennui or psychopathy, but it’s hard to tell which, and the need to sort that distinction is a major part of the allure with his work; trying to articulate the intention of the face staring out becomes the major connecting point. But don’t stare too long…
His work, as summarized on Artspace:
“Peter Stichbury’s portraits of wide-eyed, flawlessly polished, and sharply dressed figures are both captivating and uncanny. Stichbury employs a cool color palette—icy grey for the eyes, mannequin-cream for the skin—expelling all traces of human warmth or internal, emotional activity. Despite their manicured appearances, the figures avert their eyes as if nervous or insecure. Like the generic representations of celebrities and other public figures from which the artist culls some of his subjects, the images he produces incite stifling feelings of isolation and alienation. Painted with stunning precision, Stichbury’s painting technique invites comparison to airbrushing and the compulsive obsession with cultivating the perfect public image. ” (Excerpt from Source)