Brooklyn-based photographer Ji Yeo creates Somewhere on the Path, I See You, a project in which the photographer captures two different types of women: one with extreme self-regulation and distorted notions of beauty that suffer from eating disorders, and the other women are aspiring actresses and models living in Hollywood, California, who are interested in the process of being represented because they carry dreams of fame.
By carefully selecting various body and personality types ,Yeo creates a sample of photos (and people) that further examine larger societal issues regarding ideas of beauty, self-definition, and self-respect.
By forcing viewers to confront images of women who by definition had been judged continuously by themselves, it brought focus to the viewers natural impulse to judge. In doing so it implicates them in the complex relationship we have with making aesthetic judgments.
The Arms Project is the undertaking of Lisa Manfre (Flickr user frootloops). Not much information is known about her except from the Flickr testimonials she has received: she loves cereal of all sorts and is “probably the most harmonious and nice person on flickr.” That’s saying alot! The pictures sure are sweet though (in multiple senses of the word).
Matt Irie has been working on this group of highly satisfying paintings which I’d like to share with you. See more after the jump, plus an array of other projects including “Stupid Sculptures” and collaborative works with Dominic Talvacchio.
Thierry Dreyfus doesn’t hang his art on the gallery wall, but instead splits it. His Rupture installations use the white box gallery space as a starting point. The pristine walls seem to have cracked and slightly seperate as if it were a tectonic fault line. Inside is the craggy masses of wall bathed by a warm golden glow or a cold silver light. The fissure encourages the imagination to speculate on what lies beyond the walls. It is interesting to notice how the color of the light colors the imagination in connection with the ruptures. While the golden crack nearly conveys a fairy-tale like curiosity, the silver rupture has a menacing sort of undertone.
Russian native, Vania Zouravliov‘s whimsical and highly detailed illustrations are exquisitely gothic and layered with symbolism. Given the high quality of both craftsmanship and detail, as well as the rigorous layers surrounding the morbid characters in the illustration, I think the more often the viewer looks at the work, we’re able to discover a different aspect in the piece. In itself the process of uncovering the many hidden symbolic details brings out an even richer experience while looking at the work.
Michael Gaughan represents a new breed of hyper-creative talents whose work spans an absurd amount of media. Known for a variety of projects (including city-wide scavenger hunts, his chat-roulette in a mock-dorm room rapping identity Ice Rod, and for renting out his apartment for couples needing a romantic getaway on Valentine’s Day), Gaughan creates with an almost child-like glee. Despite the playfulness in the work, however, there is a sophistication and consistency that separates it from most. This is particularly evident in his highly-technical watercolor paintings, where art-world in-jokes exist seamlessly with pop-culture rimshots. In an exclusive talk with Beautiful/Decay, Gaughan summarizes his motivations, “Humor is not my main medium, but definitely a consistent theme in my life and my artwork. I think that putting yourself out there in a vulnerable way is really uncomfortable and nerve-racking. It is a lot easier to do things as a joke rather than take yourself seriously, and simultaneously I am equally motivated by the possibility of brightening up someone else’s day. I ultimately want to bring joy to other people.”
Gaughan’s work references “(art) history…obscenity, pop culture, absurdity, personal experiences, fears, feelings, misunderstandings, language, human experience, and creativity as well. Skate culture is great too!” When asked about the obvious amount of time spent on each work compared to the relatively short amount of time to elicit a humorous response (and if that adds to the joke), Gaughan responds, “Ha ha I hope so. It is also important to remember that punchlines can stay with you… Just because the audience can “get it” in seconds, doesn’t mean that they won’t revisit again it in their mind. I think art-work that takes longer to understand doesn’t necessarily mean that people will remember any longer than something that took only a second to get...”