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Image Projection from Danish Street Artist Armsrock

Let’s check in with Danish artist Asbjørn Skou (aka Armsrock), who’s been doing, for a minute now, large scale drawings of downtrodden figures and pasting them on the street. Lately, in addition to continuing his drawing pursuits, he’s been working a lot with image projection. He first used the technique to effectively “paste” his figures onto buildings with light. These days he’s evolved into a slightly more abstract methodology, inserting doors and entryways where blank walls used to be, and conjuring stalactite-filled caves. Armsrock’s always had a knack for depicting the struggles of the working class and the neglected. Nice to see him expanding his reach with this new work without abandoning the drawings.

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Meredith Dittmar Sculpts The Scale Of The Universe In Clay

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Portland based Meredith Dittmar draws on the world around her as inspiration for her delicately formed compositions. Made entirely from polymer clay, she twists, squeezes, slices and weaves different shades together to form her distinctive artworks. Reminiscent of fantasy computer games, scientific drawings and algorithms, and including organic forms of vines, leaves and trees, Dittmar’s work is a beautiful combination of science and art; man and nature; patterns and rhythms.

She cites her influences as:

“the mushrooms found in our forest, Eames power of 10, and the visualizations of complex math, science, and especially theoretical physics.”

The idea of a “Cosmic Zoom” that Dittmar displays in her work is very evident. She simultaneously depicts the Universe at a large scale, including cities, forests and planets; while also focusing in on it at a minute scale – including quarks, atoms and molecule structures.
She often includes some sort of figures in her work to add a human scale.
These can be anything from human hands holding a form, or body parts being split open by triangles. Known also for designing different characters in polymer, Dittmar sculpts these into her landscapes. Alien-like creatures with big eyes bring a strange sense of humanity to her work. They make you feel like you are viewing your own world, and something quite different. Dittmar and her creations definitely bring a new sense of wonder to the simple things around us. She points out, that maybe things aren’t that simple, after all.

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Magnetic North At Ratio 3

Ratio 3 in San Francisco recently opened a group show entitled Magnetic North featuring the work of Birgir AndréssonBuck EllisonSigurdur GudmundssonRoni HornRyan McGinleyTakeshi MurataGeof OppenheimerMitzi Pederson, and Christopher Williams. Through photography and sculpture each artist grapples with themes involving the natural world and the effects mankind has on planet earth. Multiple approaches are taken. Mitzi Pederson’s concrete and glitter fragment sculptures glisten as they speak of a broken environment while Sigurdur Gudmundsson’s Project for the Wind remains playful. The show is on view through May 11, 2013.

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Documentary Features Retired Chemistry Teacher’s Incredible Geometric Ceramics

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PORCELAINIA from Dave Altizer on Vimeo.

Filmmaker Dave Altizer’s short mini-documentary Porcelainia features Bobby Jaber, an educator, scientist, and artist. After Jaber retired from teaching chemistry, he was able to focus his energies on porcelain work, specifically geometric designs based on molecular shapes. Jaber’s approach to his work is inspired by his scientist/artist predecessors, most notably Buckminster Fuller, inventor of the geodesic dome. Though he’s had a little financial success with some of his work, Jaber is clearly motivated by love and dedication to his craft. Be sure to stick around after the credits to catch Jaber’s priceless reaction to current technology.

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Artist Interview: Mark Licari

Mark Licari
A couple of weeks ago, we featured Mark Licari on the B/D blog, and the response was so positive that we decided to catch up with the man himself and ask him some questions about his work, squids, and life in LA. Licari’s world is full of sea creatures, crawling bugs, exploding volcanoes, and the degenerative force that turns a clean room into a big fat mess. In addition to his vibrant works on paper, elaborate lithographs, and hilarious sculptures, he also creates dramatic wall drawings that will make you ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ like a little kid. His show at the Monterey Museum of Art is on view through February 14th, so go check it out!

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Nosego’s Colorful Illustrations of Pastiche Characters

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Yis “Nosego” Goodwin creates whimsical illustrations composed of various styles and references. His work is almost collagist, combining elements not only of realism and cartoonish abstraction, but also contrasting technical skills. Some of the figures he portrays are drawn with fine detail, while others appearing in the same illustration are more fluid conceptions. He creates fascinating characters out of a pastiche of pop culture, folklore, and mythology.  Aside from illustrating, he also creates public murals.  Nosego is currently collaborating with Converse, the Cartoon Network series Adventure Time, as well as Nickelodeon. He will also be featured in Streetosphere, an upcoming documentary about street art. Nosego lives in Philadelphia.

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Fortunato Castro Dresses As His Mother In Stunning Exploration Of Female Eroticism

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The 27-year-old Fortunato Castro grow up listening to his mother recall vivid memories of her youth in El Salvador. Now a photographer, Castro returns to images of his mother at his age. The art theorist Roland Barthes once wrote about his search for his late mother within photographs of her; in the series Some Girl, Some Where, Castro takes it a step further, animating the vintage photographs by dressing and posing as his mother.

In the poignant series, Castro doesn’t intend to impersonate his mother in a literal sense; rather, the images read as a son seeking to understand his mother and her youth by physically placing himself in her shoes. Each image is shot with earnest reverence; every gesture he sees his mother make is carefully mimicked, from the concentrated application of mascara to the self-conscious covering of the chest.

Photographically, Castro sees differences in the images of young women today and of his mother’s generation. The modern snapshots that permeate our culture, he suggests, are more casual and candid; a girl takes a shot of her friends as they get ready for a night out, or a woman sends an intimate selfie to her lover. The photographs of his mother’s youth are more serious and polished, and he conveys that elegantly, acknowledging the viewer in each image and positioning himself with careful deliberation.

The obvious sexuality of the photographs remain touchingly innocent; Castro’s curiosity about his mother’s body reads more like a confessional than an exploitation. He returns to the sensual exploration of childhood, using his own body to navigate his feelings about his mother’s. Take a look. (via NYMag)

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Alex Da Corte’s Installations Construct A Creepy, Life-Sized Dollhouse Haunted By Memories And Emotions

Alex Da Corte - Installation

Photo: John Bernardo, courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

Alex Da Corte - Installation

Photo: John Bernardo, courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

Alex Da Corte - Installation

Photo: John Bernardo, courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

Alex Da Corte - Installation

Photo: John Bernardo, courtesy of Luxembourg & Dayan, New York.

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).

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