Artist Ron English is best known for his bright and playful pop culture aesthetic, and a blending of high and low art cultures, something he refers to as “popaganda.” A multitude of characters and references populate his works, and it’s this accessibility that lends his work its effectiveness. One particular painting – Picasso’s Guernica – represents a modern template for English that he has interpreted over 50 times, and English approaches each interpretation aware and reverent of the original’s cultural significance.
English writes, “[Guernica] is a visual shorthand for the overwhelming and gratuitous horror of modern war. But I argue that the cultural takeaway of Guernica is actually the opposite. It transforms incomprehensible tragedy into a cartoon narrative, something we can more easily absorb. This is part of the human process, to distance ourselves from the immediacy of undiluted, overwhelming emotions by overlaying a narrative that simplifies, and in effect, takes us down from three to two dimensions. And this is the underlying concept that I grapple with in all my many versions of Guernica.”
English’s approach to the Guernica template resonates throughout much of his work; the artist often interprets our visually-saturated cultures, recontextualixing familiar imagery in order to critique or present ideas that can be more easily absorbed. In order to capture particular lighting and angles, English constructs 3D models of some his concepts before painting them. While each interpretation is unique in its imagery, English admits he’s “…always riffing on the same basic message — that cultural bias is embedded in our narrative. [His] Guernicas call attention to the product placement of global corporate culture, using war as entertainment and entertainment as war.” (via huffington post)
I recently found Los Angeles based designer/illustrator Ashkahn’s portfolio. I fell in love with quite a few of these bizarre and quirkly little ideas–they’re deceptively simple, goofy and fun. Somehow “Good Vibes” made out of green shag grass just sums it up.
That’s right folks! Today is the very last day to submit your work to our Future Perfect Book sponsored by the good folks at Prius Projects. We’ve already received hundreds of submissions but we still have room for your work so stop what you’re doing fire up your camera, paint brush, pencils, or computers and help us create a better tomorrow filled with positive creative energy! Get all the details, submission forms, guidelines, and a nice sampling of submissions on the Future Perfect website!
Qui est Paul? We may never truly know who he is but apparently he’s got very good taste in outdoor furniture. The French firm’s designs boasts bubbly, slick and upbeat pieces that fit just as well in a home as a five star resort. I especially love the Sardana seating that wraps around a tree and can be lit from the inside.
Cam Floyd has a talent for producing dream-like images. He covers the canvas with detail, color, and washed out textures. Southern born and raised, Floyd attended the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. He now relocated to LA where he works as a studio assistant to prestigious illustrator James Jean.
‘Wow’ is usually the first thing I say when I look at Matthew Porter’s photographs. Big, bold, and wildly imaginative, Porter fabricates iconic images straight out of a teenage boy’s day-dream. All critiques aside, it’s pretty cool to see a muscle car flying through the air, no? His latest show “High Lonesome” runs through January 23rd at M+B in LA, so hurry up and check it out!