A beautiful of collection of mixed media illustrations by Jacob Escobedo including a bunch of artworks for The Shins as well as six illustrations for the June Science Fiction issue of The New Yorker that illustrated Ray Bradbury’s last published story. The New Yorker issue was released one day before Bradbury’s death.
In her work, Isabel Samaras takes us on a tour through Art History populated with characters from Modern Mythology (20th century television characters and narratives.) Referencing timeless themes, Renaissance Art, Dutch genre painting, Persian Miniatures and Victorian Ethnographic photography, Samaras compresses space and time to create alternative narratives for the familiar characters we grew up watching on TV. Painting beloved and known characters from “I Dream of Jeannie,” “Gilligan’s Island” and “Planet of the Apes,” Samaras at times constructs classical tableaus, referencing the Renaissance masters’ use of people, places and stories from Classical Antiquity. She at other times makes references to the intimacy of Dutch genre painting, giving them another chance at a life that could still yet be. Universes collide to create an alternate reality where our favorite characters from different programs co-exist in a world that is at once hilarious and bittersweet. Samaras opens an alternate dimension to address the what if.
I want to do the visual equivalent of whispering in your ear. – Isabel Samaras
See Samaras’ work on view at Varnish Fine Art In SF from November 3rd – December 22nd.
Artist Andres Serrano‘s series of photographs The Morgue investigates ideas of death and our relationship with it. Working with a forensic pathologist Serrano photographed the bodies with a near classical beauty rarely associated with the morgue. Serrano ensured the anonymity of each person through tight cropping or veiling the face. The way in which the light interacts with the bodies and their veils is reminiscent of Italian baroque painting. The chiaroscuro of each photograph seems to underscore some mystery behind death balancing the morgue’s comparatively cold analytic approach. Further, the careful attention to detail and composition dignifies each person. Each subject, some actually unknown persons, are considered individually as initial shock gives way to contemplation and reflection. However, these are not sentimental images. There still remains a certain emotional detachment, a terrible loneliness in death, and Serrano’s intention is ambiguous. Each photograph’s title is each subject’s respective cause of death, and have been inserted in each photographs’ caption. Also, please note: Some may consider these photographs to be graphic and/or disturbing. (via boum!bang!)
Dutch artist Rosa Verloop uses nylon stockings and pins to create fleshy forms that look like newborns and octogenarians at the same time. She makes little folds, tucks and pleats in beige colored nylon so they resemble some strange sort of primordial life form. Working organically, she groups the stockings in different lumps and bumps and holds them in place with tiny stitches and tacks. Verloop’s sculptural faces are ones filled with deep-set wrinkles telling of well earned wisdom. Her human forms are contorted and twisted like they are in a state of being born or dying.
People in general experience these shapes as a deformation of the human body. For myself however, these are shapes with so much power, vulnerability and silence together–and therefore such inspiring–that I leave them in the way they came into being. I don’t change anything to these shapes or only very little. (Source)
Verloop not only creates and displays her human forms, but Verloop also participates in puppet events and shows with them. She performs alongside her sculptures, moving their appendages ever so slightly and mesmerizingly slow – like the creatures are dying in real time in front of the audience. The responses to her pieces range from disgust to wonderment. Verloop explains:
It’s amazing to see how some people observe with horror my sculptures while others are so attracted to get to touch them. […] As an artist, my intent is to spread a story, offering a feeling who stumbles into my sculptures. (Source)
Be sure to see more of her unique organic sculptures after the jump and decide for yourself if it’s attraction or repulsion.
VIEW / SOURCE presents two conflicting projects that deal with the phenomenon of “source code” hidden within our everyday experiences. Friedland’s work explores the integration of cross-lateral human understandings, while Manos’ systems aim to speculate their irrelevance. Two B/D featured artists will be presenting work at Think Tank Gallery in downtown LA this thursday! Aurelia Friedland (B/D feature), and Matt Manos (Book 1, Future Perfect, and B/D feature).
Opening: 12/08/11, 7-11 PM
By Appointment through 12/17/11
Hiroshi Watanabe is a photographer interested in places and people. Capturing traditions and locales that hold a personal interest for him, Watanabe was drawn to various elements of Japanese culture. Particularly interested in forms of theatricality, Watanabe sought to capture individual performers within the traditions of Sarumawashi, Noh, Ena Bunraku and Kabuki. Stylized human actors, monkeys, masks and puppets become the subject matter of Watanabe’s striking and powerful photographs. Though the traditions come from different regions and periods of history, they are tied together by Watanabe’s eye. Of his work he says:
“I strive for both calculation and discovery in my work, keeping my mind open for surprises. At times, I envision images I’d like to capture, but when I actually look through the viewfinder, my mind goes blank and I photograph whatever catches my eye. Photographs I return with are usually different from my original concepts. My photographs reflect both genuine interest in my subject as well as a respect for the element of serendipity, while other times I seek pure beauty. The pure enjoyment of this process drives and inspires me. I believe there’s a thread that connects all of my work — my personal vision of the world as a whole. I make every effort to be a faithful visual recorder of the world around me, a world in flux that, at very least in my mind, deserves preservation.”