We featured the illustrations of Australian artist Tom Littleson (aka, Dilly) in 2011, and he is also one of the artists featured in Beautiful/Decay’s Book 9, which examines the seven deadly sins through the lens of contemporary art. Dilly’s illustrations fall into the “Wrath” category, but there are many more incredible artists to explore in Book 9, including Jeremy Kost’s sexually-charged and explorative Polaroids (Lust), and Libby Black’s colorful paper sculptures of coveted, material possessions (Envy). For centuries, the seven sins have influenced the Western imagination in discerning “good” behavior from “bad” impulses, and Book 9 gives you the exclusive opportunity to see how groundbreaking artists are navigating these distinctions in the present-day world.
Dilly’s illustrations are a drastic combination of immaculate detail and excessive rage. In a series titled The Mind’s Apocalypse, Dilly has drawn the hyper-realistic portraits of various men, capturing everything from their individual hairs to wrinkles and beard scruff. The contemplative beauty of these pieces, however, is shattered by the grotesque, self-mutilating acts the men are engaged in; with expressions of passion and madness, they tear open their own skin, self-cannibalize, and anoint themselves in blood. Some of them are screaming in what could be pain or rage. The greyscale faces with bright red gore are brutally beautiful, and despite their stomach-turning intensity, it is hard to look away.
Limited copies of Book 9 are still available on the B/D shop. Click here to grab yours before they are gone for good.
Raphael Garnier is a digital cosmonaut, equally entranced by the flickering mystery emanating from Kirchner’s 18th century “magic lamps,” primordial symbology, and the dazzle-spaz of gif animations. Garnier finds just as much potential to explore new realms within the internet “as in the seabed.” In his travels, he has constructed a wondrous cabinet of curiosities from the binary and the bombastic, fixated firmly on both the future and the worship of magic from a near distant past.
We are a society mesmerized by extremes. In our fascination with art this generally translates into obsession with magnitude, scale and sheer quantity, while our consumption tendencies of technological objects tends to swing the opposite, manifesting in compact phones-computers-everything else in one hand held device. The works featured here are as mind blowing as the compactness of current computer software programs, packing so much detail into such tiny confines. All of the works here are created on standard matchbooks, with the painted or drawn imagery measuring in at no more than four inches of length on any given piece. Joseph Martinez, Mike Bell, Jason D’Aquino and Krista Charles all demonstrate immense technical skill in their matchbook art.
Chris Labrooy (previously featured here) is United Kingdom based artist and graphic designer who thrives in small projects which take a small idea and run with it. His most recent project, Auto Aerobics began as an exercise in place and context. Inspired by a winter trip to Brooklyn, La Brooy began to manipulate a Pontiac car which originally only served as a background object, but became the focus of the entire series.
By taking the familiar shapes and forms of the American Auto’s chassis, La Brooy digitally manipulates them by bending, stretching and combining, and seemlessly building them into the landscapes which they were inspired by. The bizarre, impossible, and totally impracticle images result in strikingly memorable floating sculptures that feel both alien and familiar. (via ignant)
Longtime B/D friend Justin Blyth just released the Them-Thangs magazine, a massive folded poster featuring a gang of insane images, photography, and design. If you’re a fan of the popular blog then make sure to pick this up. Congrats Justin!
As a bit of a followup to the previous post on shadow art, here is a video on Kumi Yamashita. Her work is incredibly innovative. After looking at the images and wondering how she made them, watching this video is quite insightful.
New York artist Drew Conrad sources materials to build these eerie and beautifully disturbing structures that carry their mood with them. Using salvaged materials to complete these haunting renditions of exteriors and interiors long since passed, he constructs a narrative of loss and despair, or even of just the forgotten. These planks of wood articulate their own meaning of history and the viewer can’t help but get lost in the mood that surrounds one of Conrad’s shows.
“Conrad’s architectural sculptures and hanging assemblages in Backwater Blues seem to be the somber ruins of a once vital place. Constructed out of raw material – distressed by hand with rust, debris, stain, and sediment – Conrad creates dwellings and remnants of domestic spaces that appear corroded by time. The fractured interiors and exteriors become sites for identity making, serving as metaphors for psychological reflection. Reoccurring themes of legends underpinned by myth and assumed cultural pairings suggest a questioning of collective memory in contemporary times.”(Excerpt from Source)
Mark Khaisman, born in Kiev, Russia and now living in Philly, has much more love for packaging tape than I can attest to. Using it as a “wide paint stroke,” Khaisman uses the packaging tape on light boxes, essentially creating a look that embodies pixels on a screen, but much more hands on.