Hula balances his paddle board on the water the same way he balances the hyper-realistic paintings of women he depicts above the surface of that same water. The artist chooses abandoned sites and approaches the walls of his future murals by paddling on his surf board and carefully bringing his paint and brushes along with him.
Sean Yoro, a.k.a. Hula, represents women gracefully enjoying the contact of the water. The colors used are natural, dissolving with the stone color tones of the murals and the grey/green tones of the water. Geometric pastel signs are drawn onto the naked parts of their bodies such as the neck, shoulders and arms. The rest of their bodies is covered with water as Hula depicts only the top parts of the women’s bodies. The reflection of the pictures onto the surface of the water creates a double image, accentuating the peaceful and intimate moments caught by the artist.
Hula captures the smiles of pleasure and well being the women are experiencing in hidden places. Leaving the viewer wondering who these women are and if they even exist. Away from the city of New York, with nothing but his paint and his women, the moments spent scouting locations and painting in solitude in the middle of nowhere confers a meditative break to the artist.
On the heels of his current solo show at Joshua Liner Gallery, Steve “ESPO” Powers came through the Tribeca Grand Hotel with Joey Garfield for a screening of A Love Letter for You, their documentary/narrative film about the much-celebrated Love Letter mural project that went down in Philly about two years ago. The film brings ESPO and the Love Letter squad into a semi-fictional narrative surrounding a young writer’s quest to reach a special someone, and is a huge treat for any graffiti/mural/underdog fan. Put together with some archive ESPO footage, an original script co-written by Powers, and a killer shoegazey soundtrack, LL4U will hit you right in the heartstrings. No use even trying to fight it.
Until the film finds a much-deserved wider release, you can catch the trailer after the jump.
Los Angeles has always held a special place in the hearts and minds of Americans, but for most it exists in an almost fictional capacity. Hollywood isn’t a real place – it’s a postcard, a huge sign on the side of a mountain bracketed with strategically placed palm tree silhouettes. Certainly not a place to call home, but for artist Justin John Greene that’s exactly what it is. Hollywood is a part of his heritage, and the work reflects that. Born and raised in the Los Angeles area, Greene’s work is strongly imbued with the history of the most romanticized industry in American culture. In his most recent solo show at Actual Size (an exhibition space he co-runs in the Chinatown gallery district of east L.A.) the influence of the film industry is in full focus. You Oughta Be In Pictures is a comprehensive installation that utilizes painting, sculpture, and video to create a truly immersive experience for the viewer. Installation may seem like a bit of a leap from Greene’s primarily two dimensional practice, but a closer look into the artist’s process bridges the gap seamlessly. His work is a distinctly enjoyable blend of sly historical references, direct compositional tactics, and cleverly applied humor. If you have the opportunity to see the work in person I strongly encourage you to do so.
The world of German Illustrator and Designer Mathis Rekowski is flooded with color and shape. Rekowski’s designs somehow seem chaotic but well controlled. He intricately pieces together familiar shapes, patterns, and pop culture references, to create his highly detailed work. Through his work Rekowski has been able to acquire such high profile clients as Volkswagen, Delta, and Mercedes. Further, he’s been able to reach this level of talent and career success as a self-taught artist.
Amy Mahnick takes garbage, things like empty plastic containers and packing tape, and makes paintings. The paintings are very realistic, which isn’t something that I normally get excited about, but this case is special, because the realistic technique serves the purpose of making us say “Hey, that garbage is beautiful.” It makes us think about living better. Maybe our stuff could be put to good use, maybe we could be more graceful, maybe our garbage could serve a higher purpose like Amy’s.
I like to use the shorthand of “night paintings” to describe Austrian-born, Swedish painter Glen Sorenson’s solemn, melancholic works. He consistently utilizes black backgrounds against a washed out, expertly mixed color palette that consists of pink, lavender, yellow, periwinkle and turquoise hues. A large majority of his work is made up of simplistic still lives of slumped over, crispy, dead flowers; his remaining works depict unconventionally cropped objects and wistful, stagnant scenes .
In applying vibrant colors to discarded containers, Tony Feher’s objects become transformed into beautiful and arresting pieces of sculpture. Evoking lanterns or hummingbird feeders, these majestic works have a meditative mood, and, although constructed from manmade materials, present a relationship with nature. A personal favorite is the tower of green fruit baskets. Appearing fragile and ephemeral in its airiness, the piece hints at architecture and minimalism. With a strong interest in transparency and suspension as an aesthetic tool, Feher provides a