Seattle based artist Casey Weldon’s newest series of work is a bit unsettling. He’s painted a series of cats, each with four eyes. While the premise sounds simple enough, the product is more jarring than one might expect. Upon first viewing the paintings the animals don’t appear as mutated creatures or monstrous as you might expect. Rather, the paintings seem to be making it difficult to focus. As humans we have a sensitive awareness of faces, eyes being a primary reference point. Perhaps because of this the two sets of eyes don’t seem as much like a defect in the cat as a defect in our ability to focus on the painting. Also, Weldon’s choice of exclusively depicting cats clearly references the internet. The animal’s unexpected rise to the top of internet meme-dom, nearly makes cat’s a symbol of internet culture itself. The gallery statement for his current exhibit at Spoke Art further expounds on this by saying:
“Ranging from internal commentary on the state of contemporary culture to a satirical analysis of the internet in general, Weldon has deftly created a body of new acrylic paintings that humor and appall. Through his thematic commonality of quadruple eyed animals, Weldon intentionally disorients the viewing experience by juxtaposing a subject that is impulsively attractive yet eerily disturbing. With this subtle manipulation the viewer finds themselves drawn towards these subjects, yet can’t quite focus on them, akin in many ways to the eye fatigue experienced by countless hours on the internet, often fueled by the mindless addictive nature of social media. The choice of cats specifically as his subject matter continue on Weldon’s commentary of the internet/social media. The immense popularity of cat culture and viral cat memes is unavoidable in this day and age, a point made all too apparent by the pairing of Weldon’s exhibition with a Lil Bub art show just two doors down this month at Spoke Art.” (via supersonic electronic)
Carne Griffith’s fluid and layered drawings are made by combining a layered mixture of calligraphy ink, graphite and liquids such as brandy, vodka, and whiskey. Using the alcohol as an agent to move the ink around the page Carne creates imagery that explores both figurative and floral motifs which move from representation to abstraction in the same stroke of the pen.
Mark Khaisman, born in Kiev, Russia and now living in Philly, has much more love for packaging tape than I can attest to. Using it as a “wide paint stroke,” Khaisman uses the packaging tape on light boxes, essentially creating a look that embodies pixels on a screen, but much more hands on.
For a while now, Gerry Judah has produced extremely large-scale outdoor installations. And he’s become pretty good at it. Especially notable are his automobile-themed works, which suspend scale-sized model cars high in the air as part of whirling, vertigo-inducing sculpture work. Kinda like Steve Tobin’s work, except with horsepower. (via)
Ian Strange’s site-specific artwork injects violent excitement into suburban areas, or drops the suburbs down smack in the middle of the city. With either strategy, his work comments on the drawl and deep isolation of the suburban life through paint and installation. In his most recent project, ‘Landed’ (made for the 2014 Biennial of Australian Art), Strange created a life size installation of approximately half a suburban home, painted entirely black, and made it to look as if it had either been dropped from the sky or was emerging from the ground in the Art Gallery of South Australia’s front courtyard. Details of gravel surrounding the home and a lit porch light add credibility to the realism of the scene.
In his ‘Suburban’ series, Strange uses severe colours like red and the same matte black as he later would for ‘Landed’ to demonstrate the oddity of suburban living, and the isolation he believes is quite present in such neighbourhoods. The dripping skull is jarring, as is the massive red X, but even just the large black circle has a haunting feeling. It is as if the house is there save the one gaping piece, and the viewer is left to wonder what unsettling things might inhabit it. (Via inthralld.)
Beautiful/Decay is honoring its DIY zine roots by teaming up with 5 artists from around the country to bring you their limited edition zines. Mailed exclusively to Beautiful/Decay subscribers, each copy of Beautiful/Decay Book:8 will come complete with
it’s very own zine. Each B/D subscriber will receive a different zine blind packed into their issue. These zines are not available in stores, only B/D subscribers will receive them. Subscribe today to make sure you get your hands on one of these exclusive zines. Read about the talented zine makers after the jump and click on the subscribe link to reserve your copy of Beautiful/Decay Book:8 with the limited edition zine today!
The Innocents series by Taryn Simon documents the stories of individuals who served time in prison for violent crimes they did not commit. At issue is the question of photography’s function as a credible eyewitness and arbiter of justice.
Hollie Chastain is a collage artist from Chattanooga, Tennessee. Her eye for puzzling together found paper scraps with cut images, shapes, or silhouettes, matched with a rainbow pop of arresting color, gives her collection a vintage yet contemporary appeal. So, it’s no surprise to see her work grace the covers of not only the literary Oxford American but also musical albums from The Figgs and Lightyear.
Most recently, Chastain had brunch with The Jealous Curator to discuss her love of antiquing for found imagery and her pretty heavenly book cover series (above), noting her process: “I never plan them ahead of time. When I find one I like, I sit down with my scraps and move things around until something feels perfect. Most of the time, I will first decide what I can’t bear to cover up on the original cover and that is the beginning of the shape of the composition.”