One of our best and zaniest magazine covers (which is saying something!) was designed by French illustrator Skwak, exclusively for B/D Issue J. We profiled Skwak for that issue, and we interviewed him again when he collaborated with the Mr. Chiizu crew. He described the genesis of the crazed creatures he features:
“My maniacs are born to pollution. They have since evolved and created a world with its own rules and codes, all based on the absurd and the idea of “excess”. Every day, new maniacs enter this world and make it evolve. This world is becoming more dense, more rich everyday.”
You can get this totally radical Skwak B/D cover print now in our newly relaunched shop. Hungry for more of Skwak’s style, just like we are? Well whet your art appetite with his Feed Me print, a beautifully tangled composition of hungry creatures, weaving in and out of one another as they eat everything in sight. Take some critters home with you today!
On the lookout for cool art gifts for friends and family? We’ve got a big holiday sale on all of our posters, books and magazines. Now you can find the work of Skwak and other talented artists at 15% off full price! re3Use the promo code “beautifulposters” during check out and instantly save 15% on everything on our shop!
Come check out the opening of Mastadon Maze show (curated by our friends Mya Stark & Graham Kolbeins) at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood tonight 5-7pm! Just look at the enticing list of things that may or may not (but probably will) happen during the show! The Art Los Angeles Contemporary fair will also be happening at the same time so be there or be square!
Romanian illustrator Aitch creates colorful images that are ripe with magentas, turquoises, electric yellows, and more. But, don’t let those bright pigments confuse you. While cheerful, there are some macabre moments that add an intriguing element to her detailed paintings.
Aitch is inspired by her travels, naturalistic illustrations, naive art, and folklore from around the world. You definitely get the sense of this through her series like The Garden of Good and Evil and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. Both, as you might guess, are the retelling of stories – original sin and the C.S. Lewis tale, respectively – but through her own imagery and voice. Here, full-sized women with an array of unusual tattoos interact with the psychedelic landscape and a cast of fantastical creatures.
The same women appear throughout Aitch’s work in other series like Coffins. Here, it’s much like it sounds – we see decorative coffins, people buried underground, and a meditation on what happens after we’re gone. Her style lends itself to a more lighthearted, beautiful depiction of death and a return to nature where we’re wrapped up in gorgeous vines and flowers.
At first glance, the oil paintings of Jan Esmann could easily be confused with photographs; seen in heightened resolution and depth of field, the portraits capture the remarkable tangibility of the human face. Also unlike your typical photographic subject, all of the painter’s characters are sleeping, caught wide-mouthed in their own personal dreamscapes, allowing viewers an uncomfortable and enchanting intimacy with the private imaginings of the unconscious mind.
Seen from above and as if lit by candlelight, Esmann’s strange and transfixing portraits evoke narratives like that of the mythological Psyche, who, against her lover Cupid’s warnings and prohibitions, snuck a candle into their bedchamber so that she might glimpse his face. The painted faces seem to stand at the precipice of wakefulness, their folded, glistening eyelids precariously shut. The viewer is allowed to witness the most vulnerable of states, yet (s)he does not escape the unnerving sense that s(he) might be caught, found out.
The consistent open mouths betray sleepy yearnings, unabashed moments of ecstasy in slumber. As if possessed by spiritual or erotic climax, Esmann’s subjects are sensuous and blissful; saliva glitters on canines, and sweat sets the face aglow. Unconfined to a more truthful representation of human perception (either photographic or otherwise), the artist’s hyper-realist style enables her to picture every inch of flesh with the same breathtaking clarity. Viewers may examine every feature, while the objects of our attentions remain frozen in time and space. In this beautifully bizarre series, we are permitted our voyeuristic impulses. (via Lost at E Minor)
Jocelyne Grivaud reinvents Barbie as famous works of art and cultural icons throughout the ages.
“This design needed time to take root, as often. The whole story began one day, in November 1967, with a present, all tenderness.
It was pink, vaporous and extremely delicate. With the patience of an angel, my mother had secretly knitted a dressing gown and tiny bootees for my Barbie. It seems to me there were more clothes, but these bootees, with their little pink knots on top totally fascinated me. Then I grew up. The doll vanished, but I kept in mind the elegance and grace of my Barbie as well as a little bootee deep down my secret box. One day, the idea of extending the happy part of my childhood through pictures I love took shape. Barbie is often criticized for being too blonde, too superficial, too skinny, too “ideal marketing”, too “this” and too “that”…. My aim was to adjust this so famous profile to different emblematic representations.
Here’s my personal contribution as a birthday present to my mascot, Barbie, superimposed on the vision of artists whose work I greatly appreciate. Let me thank them all for creating such intense pictures. Many thanks to Ruth Handler for creating this dolly model that enraptured me throughout my childhood.”
Guatemalen artist Dario Escobar creates powerful installations and sculptures out of all sorts of sports related materials but his series of deconstructed skateboards pulls at my rebellious teen heartstrings. Whether it’s the oldschool board with the classic Mercedes logo or the engraved polished silver deck these works make me want to pull out my board out of the closet and shred through the nearest art gallery. (via collabcubed)
NYC based artist Norman Mooney makes works that are at once physical and metaphysical. His works explore the elemental and cyclical synergies of nature. Materiality, pattern, scale and experience are key concerns within his practice. Although he works in a wide array of materials his massive burst sculptures are completely jaw dropping. Radiating from every angle these incredible explosions shimmer and shine like a star far off in the galaxy. (via)
Jeremy Geddes is an incredibly cinematic painter. His realistically painted images offer an overwhelming amount of drama through the use of not just aesthetic composition and image, but through concept as well. His recent series feature an astronaut exploring Earth. It’s creatures, buildings, landscapes, etc. Hinting towards the idea of the human alienation within our own environment.