The graphically sexual and violent nature of Suehiro Maruo’s illustrations has over the years catapulted him to stardom in the underbelly of Japanese art. There’s quite a few prominent blogs (Baby Art run by Trevor Brown, for example) that revolve around the genre which he is so big in: nightmarish manga (the Japanese term for comic books, meaning literally “whimsical pictures”) fall into the Japanese category of “erotic grotesque”. The stories often take place in the early years of Showa Era Japan. Maruo also has a fascination with human oddities, deformities, birth defects, and “circus freaks.”
Some of the images I’m posting here were from his collaborations with Japanese punk and hardcore records- many having to do with Fascist imagery that we at B/D in no way endorse! Nonetheless the artwork is beautiful. I especially love the line work and color juxtaposition in this cover he did for Funeral Party.
A man of many talents, Craig Redman is a New York based illustrator, typographer, pattern artist, installation artist, sculptor, animator, designer, and art director. A list worthy of comparison would be his equally long list of well-known clients, such as, MTV, Louis Vuitton, Nike, Apple, Vogue, Converse, and The New York Times. And this may be overkill, but Craig not only has exhibited in various parts of the world, but he also exhibited at the Louvre, Paris (every artist’s dream!)
While we have many reasons to envy Craig Redman, we can also take solace in the fact that all of his accomplishments are well deserved. Craig’s diverse talents are immediately visible in his vibrant, smart, and secretly optimistic work.
Back in March B/D teamed up with Toyota Prius to bring you the Future Perfect Project. Due to certain circumstances beyond our control we couldn’t consider submissions from international artists. However that didn’t stop hundreds of loyal international B/D readers to send in work. We figured that the only honorable way to approach the situation would be to feature all of these artists day by day in a short series. For day numero uno we bring to you Tom Dorkin, a 21 year old illustrator from London who is quite creative when it comes to showing off the natural detail in decay. Maybe the only way our future will be perfect is if we realize our commonality in being decaying mammals and that we must seize the day rather than waste away.
It’s difficult to overstate how large Jorge Rodriguez-Gerda‘s portraits are. While much of his work consists of enormous charcoal portraits inhabiting the sides of entire apartment buildings, Rodriguez-Gerada’s Terrestrial Series are best viewed through an airplane window. The artist typically uses natural materials such as sand and dirt to draw out faces from the earth. Speaking about the reasons for his portraits’ huge scale he says:
“I am critical of the marketing that has crept into so many facets of our lives. I decided to do work that would counter it by using the same codes used by advertisers such as scale, visibility and eye catching images. I wanted these new iconic images to be huge and placed in strategic places.”
Yang Maoyuan is a Beijing, China-based multidisciplinary artist noted for his shaping and misshaping of the human form. Born in Dalian, China in 1966, the artist has been witness to one of the most massive cultural shifts ever to occur in human history, so it is not surprising that historical relics and remnants, loaded with archaeological connotations, become source material for Yang.
In a series of work created in 2009, replicas of classical sculptural busts are created in bronze, and systematically sanded, smoothed and rounded out, giving the once easily recognizable faces a new and updated quality. The mirrored effect of these bronzes contemporarizes the pieces, but also forces viewers to see their own reflection in history. Some of the series became Look Inside, while other replicas took their titles from their original source inspirations.
When photographed in their installation environments, the resulting images look similar to 2-Dimensional collages, with smooth cut lines and rounded edges. It is this new verbal language that not only consumes classical sculptural, but also affects the way contemporary audiences will continue to consume culture. (via notshakingthegrass)
American artist Phillip K. Smith III found inspiration from the most basic of places in his recent project, Lucid Stead. Taking a small cabin which had been slowly eroded by the harsh environments of the Joshua Tree Desert for seventy years, Smith III modified the existing structure, adding mirrors between aged wood slats and changing LED panels to the door and window frames. By day, the desert scenery is reflected upon the modified mirrored slats, while the piece illuminates the desert landscape by night. The artist explains Lucid Stead, “This project is about tapping into the desert, into the pace of change, and is about responding to the quiet of the place. And ultimately, in that quite, the project begins to unfold.”
While the piece has a decidedly aesthetic-first quality, Smith explains that there are four ideas at play in Lucid Stead – “Light and Shadow” (the interaction with the sun, and changes in the reflections of its light), “Reflected Light” (within the mirrors, using the desert as a medium placed on the shack), “Projected Light” (the LED lights within the shack, pure color illuminating the cracks and openings of the structure), and “Change” (the shifting colors of the lights, which change so slowly as to be almost unnoticed). Smith III continues, “The project really is about slowing down…stopping and being quite so you can truly see and listen.” (via from89 and designboom, additional images via Kevin Smith, archinect)