Hungarian artist Flora Borsi’s latest work was fueled by the emotions she felt after visiting Detroit. The artistic examination of architectural and infrastructural ruin has proven to be a topic of interest for many a creative person. From the ruins of once bustling institutions comes an idealization of the past that in turn triggers reflection on the future. She explains that she was “saddened by the state of abandoned buildings and factories”. She transferred this feeling into her latest project, simply entitled “Detroit”, which is a clever series of photos where she places old photographs of people in Detroit on top of photos she took during her time visiting the city.
Her photos include couples roaming the streets, children ice skating, and factory workers manufacturing tire parts. She merges what she sees as a very alive past and a very much less alive present. Through her splicing of past and present, she addresses the melancholy associated with the decay of an urban setting and the nostalgia of a metropolis in its heyday.
Her series reaches beyond a simple display of sadness and neglect, and the clashing of the city’s past and recent present provides strong grounds for reflection on the idea of rebirth. By doing this, she has somewhat created her own vision of urban decay in a way that is both bleak and hopeful.
Preview of the Book 2 front cover along with the flap that folds inside. Designed by master of bits, Julien Ducourthial.
The second edition of Beautiful/Decay has just been sent to press last week! The theme is “What A Mess!” and plays with the idea of “messyness” in all sorts of mediums and in my humble opinion, features some of my personal favorite artists to date (pssst, be sure to subscribe and reserve your copy because they’re sure to run out fast). We went back to the basics of art making (highly refined practice of hot glue-gunning pom-poms and popsicle sticks, you know, the stuff you learned in kindergarten) to create some essential elements in the layout design. Then from there we started exploring the faded and slightly warped visual language of scanned print outs to create the feeling of an artist’s studio or workspace. You’ll see a couple different examples as to what that means exactly in the spreads I’m giving you a sneak peak on. See the craziness after the jump!
French photographer Florian Beaudenon’s series Instant Life invites the viewer to relish their voyeurism as we spy on people caught from above. The intimate photographs features a variety of women living their everyday lives; they fix a bike, eat on the couch, and write in a notebook. Although we’re invited into their homes, we never see their face.
If you love people watching and interiors, then Beaudenon’s photographs probably pique your interest. The compositions are zoomed in enough so we can admire the fine details of their dwellings. Collections of books, sex toys, and shoes are all featured in the wood-floored homes. It doesn’t matter that we can’t fully see what these people look like – we learn enough about them through just the items they own and how they organize where they live. (Via Fast Co. Design)
Does an artist’s, like a pro-wrestler’s, value depend on his or her physical mass? Not necessarily; however, Faye Mullen’si am an artist and i weigh physically contextualizes the worth of the artist in a quantiﬁed way with the intention to resurface the question of self worth and the value of the artist’s creative output.
Brooklyn based artist, Erik Jones, paints vibrant portraits marrying the female nude with abstraction. His new series, In Colour, juxtaposes traditional figure painting with digital-grafitti-esque mark making. His work is simultaneously inviting and confrontational — we enter the picture plan via recognized moments of breasts, hair, and lips, yet, are then pushed away by bold 2-D elements floating through a seemingly 3-D space (or perhaps, is it the other way around?). His paintings are endless fun for the eye, constantly provoking the viewer to make sense of a nonsensical atmosphere. He states:
“The figures are used as an aesthetic anchor, holding the viewer’s attention to a recognizable form, while exploring colorful, nonrepresentational abstractions. In a way, the figures make the chaos palette-able. I wanted the graphic aesthetic to take on digital qualities and appear to be more naive and childlike in the approach. As if an inexperienced, non-artistic person were exploring a digital drawing program for the first time.”
The “digital drawing” effect mimics contemporary approaches to fashion prints and graphic design, giving off an editorial-like feel. While his work is very playful, it also feels precisely calculated and particular. Jones is able to create a hyper specific effect using a plethora of media, including; watercolor, colored pencil, acrylic, water-soluble wax pastel and water-soluble oil, making sure that each mark he makes is rendered the exact way he intends.
Irregular shaped stones layered in their natural environment, creating an organic sculptural landscape. Each stone, carefully chosen, is placed on top of another stone; no tricks or artifice used, only pure balance. Artist Miha Brinovec doesn’t make a difference between creating and meditating. He uses this time to come closer to nature and to create a “connection between water, rocks and me”. He calls this approach ‘Gravity Art’. A concept in which he only seems to be a sort of magical hand that puts up beautiful sculptures and gives all the credit to mother nature.
Miha Brinovec selects divers types of stones; all of irregular shapes and a special one for the top. He then needs to find three points in order to link each stone, one to another. This process is a time for reflection and introspection. An inner conversation with himself and with nature during which he becomes one with all the natural elements surrounding him. The meditation associated with the art of balancing stones offers the perspective of clearing the mind and finding peace. A methodical, creative difficult endeavor that becomes a vital, repairing balm.
I could spend months staring at Alexandra Mackenzie’s ultra detailed drawings. Featuring tribal shamans, flesh eating wolfs, and tiny unicorns running around in balls of hair, Alexandra’s drawings have something for everyone. The only thing missing is that there aren’t more drawing on Alexandra’s site. While the drawings are in short supply she does have a great series of collage work that relate to the drawings in a very interesting way.
The work of artist Michael Murphy emphasizes personal perspective. Murphy builds upon several layers to construct a larger image only seen from a precise angle. When stepping away from that angle the image descends back into abstraction. Murphy uses this to express the social and political ideas implied several of his pieces. A portrait of Barack Obama diffuses to reveal very many shades of skin tones which accumulate to form a whole portrait. The simple shape of a Christian Crucifix is dismantled into an iconology of the symbol – a visual conversation of contemporary issues associated with the religion.