German painter Jens Hesse’s work is influenced by digital glitches and distortions. Cleverly using corduroy fabric as a base, Hesse creates fragmented images that are abstract and representational at once showing a glimpse of reality and creating unexpected abstract moments via imperfections in technology.
Last week, we shared the work of Lauren Everett and her Rocky Horror portraiture project. This week, we’re proud to feature Devotion, a series of photographs exploring the inner worlds of Los Angeles’ alternative religion communities—specifically, those surrounding Santa Muerte. With a keen eye for detail, Everett provides a unique glimpse into private ceremonies, such as cleansing rituals and spiritual masses such as Misa Blanca. Also shown are candle-lit altars, where Santa Meurte herself can be seen, represented as a hooded skeletal figure brandishing a scythe in one hand, the world in the other.
Translating as “Holy Death,” the origins of Santa Muerte are unknown, but (as Everett states) she is believed to be a “syncretism of The Virgin Mary and the Mesoamerican goddess Mictecacihuatl” (Source). To her believers, she represents healing, peaceful death, and a safe transition into eternity. Worship mainly occurs privately in homes, where people construct shrines and host ceremonies. As Everett’s photos reveal, devotees also gather at temples to receive group blessings and share stories of healing.
Everett expertly and compassionately explores a community that is not clearly represented (or perhaps even understood) by a more general audience. The imagery absorbs the imagination, but even more compelling are the portraits of the individual devotees engaging in private practices; take Sysiphus, for example, who stands with his wife in blue robes in their temple on Melrose Avenue. Also featured is Orisaneke, a woman who can be seen preparing carnation bouquets for Misa Blanca. These intimate shots invoke the immersive history and tradition of Santa Meurte, as well as the value and beautiful diversity of alternative spiritual practices.
Tristram Lansdowne’s watercolors are investigations of landscape and architecture in relation to ideas of permanence and function. Geological and botanical frames of reference add temporal concerns to Lansdowne’s exploration of the metaphorical power of ruins.
The watercolours present richly described scenes in which various tropes of landscape and architecture have been assembled to create conflicted systems, developed according to a logic dominated more by historical glitch than any autonomous idea of form and function. Both enchanting natural phenomenon and deluding vision, the mirage serves, here, as false refuge but also as an opportunity for divination, for time travel. Vestiges of architectural modernism appear, but only as specimens in a larger natural history that includes 17th century geological theories and Romantic totems. This is a world comprised of art historical flotsam, predicated on faulty idealism and mistaken identity, where everything is an invasive species.
I love Emil Holmer’s nutty bright colored graffiti jungles.If you happen to be in Berlin, on Friday, 12th of March 2010 from 6 to 9 p.m., Galerie Michael Janssen will be presenting a selection of his recent paintings.
DXV by American Standard is a landmark product line that represents the company’s storied history spanning 150 years. The collection spans four broad movements: Classic (1880 – 1920), Golden Era (1920 – 1950), Modern (1950 – 1990), and Contemporary (1990 – today). Each piece in the carefully curated collection harkens back to the era it was inspired by and combines it with modern sensibilities, technology and performance. Although each fixture is inspired by a distinct era, the entire collection has a dialogue and the ability to cross over and create a remix of eras in one space.
The Fitzgerald Collection by DXV perfectly encapsulates the beauty and lines of the 1920’s Jazz Age. The faucets, sinks and fixtures echo the rectilinear, geometric forms and shapes that ruled the Art Deco aesthetic. Artists, designers and aesthetes have always had a love affair with the opulent finishes, bold lines and flair of the Art Deco era, and the Fitzgerald Collection gives the modern home owner the finishes to create a sumptuous and inspired space.
Tianmiao Lin‘s artwork combines household objects and human figures with a technique called “thread winding”: wrapping thread — or hair or silk — around an object until it is completely covered. The result is oddly tactile and organic, looking like something spun by a spider caught in a fevered dream. The use of string, Lin reveals in an interview with The Culture Trip, is partly for that very reason. They are organic and natural, and contain an element of mysterious strength. “The materials take on a life of their own,” Lin says.
When Chinese artists are discussed, it’s hard to ignore politics; Lin is no exception. As an artist — particularly a female artist — from a country that went through a rather recent revolution, her creations are rife with subtext whether intended or not. It’s difficult if not impossible to draw on the themes and symbols of family and femininity without also summoning the specter of their cultural context.
In a collection called “Mothers!!!,” pearls and webs of string become tangled cancerous masses on the backs of women, weighing them down. The pearls are beautiful but also destructive. In another installation called “Chatting,” several figures stand in a circle, heads bowed, seeking connection perhaps but resigned to the impossibility of it.
To be fair, Lin has rejected feminist and political readings of her work. As an artist, she most likely wants to defy labels and have her work speak for itself. Still, it’s hard not to feel a little glimmer of dissent and rebellion in her art — arising organically, woven into the very DNA of it, strand by strand.
Marcos Montané is a Buenos Aires-based Art Director who says he is “experimenting in the fields of procedural design, generative graphics and visual music.” His work is expressed in typography, visual design and audio-reactive visuals for VJ sets. Perhaps his most striking work is what he differentiates as some of his ‘still’ works, wire sculptures that recall natural, repeating readouts from a Richter scale, echoes, orbital fields or cellular biology.
In works like his Flowfields I & Flowfields II (above, and below – grouped and singular), Montané explains his inspiration and process “I was always amazed by the visualizations of flowfields that return some 3d softwares. In this case I used a topology optimization software and export the resulting lines to turn them into wire structures. The final result is a compact mass of wires.” The mass of wires takes on the appearance of sound waves solidified, equal parts organized yet chaotic(-looking).
Montané’s One-Piece Structures (below, with white backgrounds) are generated structures from a single piece of wire. Although simpler in their construction, the One-Piece Structures (which are named and numbered as Variations) equally complicated geometries, such as computer landscapes, GPS-tracking fields or sonar readouts.
You can follow Marcos Montané’s work at his Tumblr and Flickr accounts.