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Cara Phillips’ Breathtaking Portraits Using UV Light Reveals Every Blemish And Invisible Beauty

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Cara Phillips got the idea for her Ultraviolet Beauty series from the beauty industry. Medical spas and dermatologists use the same ultraviolet light that she did, with a very different effect. The ultraviolet shows every imperfection of your skin not visible to the naked eye, and dermatologists use it to show you a glimpse into the ‘future’ of your skin. In reality, there is no way to know how many of the blemishes will surface, but it’s an effective scare tactic, and apparently ensures the sale of cosmetic products to ‘prevent’ the catastrophe that is imperfect skin.

Phillips’ focus was to use the same ultraviolet technology, but with a different outcome. She took portraits of people on the street in New York, offering them for free to anyone willing to sit (it’s unclear if they had to pay to have a print, so free might be a liberal term here). She encouraged them to close their eyes to soften their expression. The images are beautiful, and you can’t imagine that someone could look at themselves portrayed in this style and feel alarmed by the look of their skin. Phillips’ photographs are taken in black and white large format, presumably not the technology a medical spa would employ, but the original images taken by the skin professionals are in black and white, so Phillips’ photos are not far from the truth. (Via MTL Blog)

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Gerald Collings’ Meat Faces Of Death

Gerald Collings‘ paintings are  a perfect mix between Francis Bacon and your local butcher shop. These layered paintings look like they have been to hell and back. With images of skinned faces, torn apart rib cages, and bodies in various states of decay, they have become the ultimate test for how grotesque an image can be while still remaining a rich and seductive work of art.

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Brooke Shaden

Brooke Shaden places herself within worlds she wishes we could live in, where secrets float out in the open, where the impossible becomes possible. Brooke’s photography questions the definition of what it means to be alive.

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Dominic Paul Moore

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Check out these lovely graphite works by Chicago artist Dominic Paul Moore. With a pretty diverse selection of work in his portfolio and not many years under his belt, this is a guy you’ll want to keep an eye out for.

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Adela Andea’s Otherworldly Light Installations

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Adela Andea’s light installations and sculptures seem otherworldly.  They almost feel organic, reminiscent of vivid underwater scenes, but the lights, wires and other tech that make them seem more like alien landscapes.  The Romanian-born, Texas-based artist seeks to explore the line between actuality and virtual reality.  Weaving LED and CCL lights with pulsing electrical components Andea creates installations that transport a viewer to a place where art becomes experience, and that experience is all encompassing.

Andea likes to think of her work as incorporating many layers of truth.  She embraces the possibility that there isn’t one reality, and her work strives to capture that notion visually. With the fast and overwhelming advancement of technology, Andea’s installations represent the dialogue between people and new technologies.  The desire for a viewer to have a personal experience with her work, but to also think about the way that information can be manipulated to form one’s notion of reality is the driving force behind her complex installations.

In her artist statement Andea writes: “The numerous transitions in my life made me think about the enormous capability of people to adapt to situations and even more, search for the new possibilities of personal development through inquisitive experiences.”  A witness to the Romanian Revolution in 1989, and eventually forced to immigrate to the United States in 1999, Andea is certainly qualified to make work that comments on the experience of experiences.

Her work is currently on view at the Texas Biennale, now through November 9th at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum in San Antonio, Texas.

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Francois Chartier’s Photorealistic Crumpled Paper Still-Lifes

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Montreal-based artist Francois Chartier creates still-life paintings with a photorealistic quality. He often pairs the still-life object with an image of crumpled tissue paper that is dramatically shaped around each object, creating an overall presentation of the still-life object. The juxtaposition of these textures – matte and crumpled with the bright and shiny – demonstrates Chartier’s level of skill as a realistic painter. Surprisingly, Chartier hasn’t always been a painter. After 30 years in advertising as a commercial artist, he entered the fine art world full-time at the age of 50.

Chartier applies the acrylic paint with an airbrush onto a smooth gesso base. He explains, “Although my paintings are realistic, my goal is to create through the layering of mediums and the play of the brush, the illusion of depth and sense of presence beyond what is found in photographs. . . I am drawn to painting large scale works where my subjects, always painted bigger then life size, are given room to seize the viewer and where life’s smaller details are revealed in their beauty and simplicity.” (via juxtapoz)

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Michael West’s Bicycle Made Out Of Wood, Willow And Stinging Nettle

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A bicycle made out willow, ash and stinging nettle found in it’s organic and primal form in nature, near the artist’s home in Somerset, England. Michael West has built an intricate sculpture as a self portrait. Imitating each and every components of a real bike from the handlebars to the tires. His process of creation excludes all boundaries, he lets the imagination interpret the symbols he left out on the bike to understand the meaning of his art.

He was influenced by Van Gogh’s chair, where the empty chair is used as the personification of its owner. “I chose the bike as society often uses anthropomorphism to reflect themselves within everyday objects, for example a car may be male or female and often given a personality and sometimes even a name”.

Michael West believes in playing with the subconscious to create. Blending an adult and a child’s vision, he gathers many layers, clue information such as symbols, signs and colors to clarify his intentions and his claims towards society and politics.This process creates a dynamic relationship between the artist and his object. The details characterized by a slow construction, attention to detail and means chosen carefully mirror the artist’s personality. This assembled bike, at first and abstract piece; becomes the reality of Michael West and soon an extension of himself.(Via Junkculture)

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Plywerk Your Work

B/D Contest: Plywerk Your Work
Beautiful/Decay is calling all artist and designers! We are teaming up with Plywerk to offer one talented person the opportunity to get their own artwork printed and mounted on a 12″ X 12″ environmentally friendly bamboo Plywerk panel worth $63.

Submit your artwork to our B/D Flickr Pic Pool (become a member first) and after all the artwork as been submitted, we will choose the most interesting piece as the winner. Artwork may be submitted in any medium, so long as it is scanned or in some digital format.

Deadline: August 25th, 2009 @ 6:00pm PST

Guidelines:

  • Join the B/D Flickr group if you haven’t already and submit to our Flickr group pool
  • Title your work with “Plywerk Contest Art” after uploading it so we will know to count it for the contest
  • Any genre of artwork is acceptable but it must be in some digital format (scanned or photographed)

Good luck to all! We look forward to seeing your submissions!

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