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David Kassan’s Uncanny Likeness

David Kassan paints with the uncanny mimetic virtuosity of Old Masters, verging on the photographic- though his subjects, rather than regal dukes, bejeweled empresses or wealthy patrons, are far less posed, pompous and assuming. Kassan often situates his sitters within the detritus of layered, urban walls, creating a striking reference to past masters while bringing their ideals into the vision of a decidedly contemporary eye.

Kassan will be exhibiting his works March 12- April 4th at Henoch Gallery.

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Kaspian Shore’s Gentle Faces

Kaspian Shore’s acrylic paintings of pale faced boys and girls remind me of old washed out photographs that you find at antique shops that have years of wear and tear.

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Legendary Sci-FI Master, H.R. Giger Dies At 74

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Legendary Swiss surrealist H.R. Giger, has died this past Monday, May 12th,2014 after sustaining injuries from a fall. He was 74. Born on February 5, 1940 in the rural town of Chur, Switzerland, the artist showed an interest in dark art forms from an early age but trained to be an industrial designer at the School of Applied Arts in Zurich.

Geiger was best known for designing the iconic “xenomorph” creature in the Alien movie franchise, and for his work in Alejandro Jodorowsky’s ambitious film, “Dune”.

Giger’s nightmarish imagery-a blend of mechanical and biological androids-was in fact fueled by his own bad dreams and by an early interest in artists like Salvador Dali and Ernst Fuchs. The artist kept a journal by his bed so he could record the imagery. Wired reported that Giger had “an idyllic childhood in one of the most beautiful places on Earth. But it harbored forbidding structures and estranged elements that left an impression on a child subjected to night terrors and panic attacks.”

An early series of controversial art, most likely influenced by his perturbed childhood nightmares and anxieties, landed Giger a gig to create the album cover of the 1973 Emerson, Lake & Palmer album, “Brain Salad Surgery.” After his success with the English progressive rock trio, Giger became highly solicited in the movie business.

After winning an Academy Award for visual effects on “Alien,” the artist continued to experiment in show business by designing sets for “Poltergeist II” (1986) and “Alien III” (1992).

Giger, however, found himself disliking Hollywood. Later after the last Alien movie, he retreated back to Zurich in hopes that he could get back to being a visual artist for his own sake.

In 1998, the artist founded the H.R. Giger Museum in Gruyeres, Switzerland. Since then, Giger was inducted into the Science Fiction and Fantasy Hall of Fame and worked on several other projects- including a guitar line with Ibanez. (via NPR and Daily News)

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Typography Made From Empty Space And Everday Objects

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The words ‘serif’ and ‘sans serif’ can get a designers heart beating a bit faster – new and interesting fonts can be a inspirational jumping off point.  These photograph based letters from New York based photographer Bela Borsodi definitely have a wide appeal.  Borsodi uses household objects and empty space so as to nearly make it appear he happened on the letters by chance.  He clearly has a knack for making the meticulously planned appear casual.  Borsodi’s skill has won him clients such as the Esquire, Details, and the Wall Street Journal.  Also, see his work previously here. [via]

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Todd Chilton

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Really really nice geometric abstractions from Chicago dude – Todd Chilton. Thoughtful, painty, very awesome.

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Alex Gibbs’ Comic Bleakness

Alex Gibbs is an English artist whose paintings and drawings are equal parts despairing and funny. I love his mix of patterns, graphic contours, and all-over narratives–sex on a couch in a party room with a man huddled and crying; dancing by yourself in a room filled with big floral prints; a (presumably) dead couple holding hands in airplane seats surrounded by puzzle-like pieces of their airplane. His work doesn’t make light of human tragedy per-se, it just gives it a little perspective by flattening us into the shapes and patterns of the world we live in, relishing in the absurdity of our perceptions. ( via )

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Artist Herbert Baglione Paints Eerie Shadows On The Walls Of An Abandoned Psychiatric Hospital

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Since 1999, Brazilian artist Herbert Baglione has been populating the cracked walls and floors of forgotten places with shadowy, painted specters, which are characterized by their elongated limbs and emaciated, sinuous bodies. As the years have passed, his ghostly installations have emerged in dark corners all over the world, including Brazil, Germany, and France. In July 2013, Baglione found what might be his most eerie location to date: an abandoned psychiatric hospital in Parma, Italy. Down the building’s moldering, littered corridors, the artist’s ghosts aimlessly trail their wispy bodies up the walls and through open doors. At this time, the ongoing project was officially named 1000 Shadows. Describing his creative approach to forgotten places and their inhabiting spirits, Baglione has explained that “The ‘reading’ of these places allows [him] to take the shadow to a unique path, which usually feeds and broadens the discussion because it brings light to the abandoned environment […]. It is as if the soul is leaving an invisible trail on these places” (Source).

What makes Baglione’s work so simultaneously fascinating and unsettling for the psyche is that it plays with the dichotomy of presence and absence — two states of being that we often assume are fundamentally separate. By creating these shadows, not only has Baglione left his physical “mark” (his presence) for passersby to ponder (who was here? And what does it mean?), but he reminds us that other people were there long before us, and perhaps their energy still remains, making absence a form of presence. We feel drawn to these sad specters, and perhaps a bit frightened; they are traces of a persisting darkness that inspire us, emotionally and imaginatively, to close the gap in time. The wheelchair deserted in the hallway with its accompanying ghost is a particularly visceral referent for this troubling of past and present life.

Visit Baglione’s blog, Facebook page, and Instagram and follow him as he continues to occupy our imaginations and the world’s forgotten places with his signature shadows. (Via Bored Panda)

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Souther Salazar’s Textured, Playful Paintings

Souther Salazar‘s works are full of life and narrative. He uses a variety of techniques really well, putting everything in it’s right place. His personal style allows you to jump right in and, even with so much going on, you feel like you get what’s going on. Salazar recently closed a show at NARWHAL Contemporary Art Gallery in Toronto. See more paintings after the jump.

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