Casey Jex Smith makes work which draws images sacred to high-geekdom, art, and religion together until they are inseparable. I have been into his work since seeing it in person at the Drawing Center a couple of years ago. Some of Smith’s influences are: Dungeons & Dragons manuals, Agnes Martin paintings, Mormon architecture, and Sunday School flannel-board cut-outs. Casey and his wife – who is also an artist, Amanda Michelle Smith, both teach high school art in CA.
Painter, sculpture, and all around amazing artist Brendan Monroe recently moved his operation from the bay area all the way to Stockholm, but he’s still making paintings that will stop you dead in your tracks. Blobs, trash, organic structures, and cosmic explosions are just a few of the subjects you will encounter in his hauntingly beautiful work. Monroe has been one of my favorites for a long long time, and not just because we share the name.
Is that a plane? A bird? Or perhaps, a Cursor Kit? Nerd alert! Very little is known about this kite. It seems to be bringing the desktop of your computer outdoors (pfff, finally). Quad-line control, asymmetrical framing, nearly invisible hand-formed stainless fittings, and opposed-bow tensioning for the sail make this incredible kite look digitally pasted right into the sky. Read more to watch a video of it in motion.
Photographer, film director, and international dilettante Ivan Cazzola takes photos of “models, artists, rock bands, cinema stars, gipsys and gangastars, posh ladyes, whores and transexuals”. His voyeuristic portraits are beautifully candid, subtly intimate, and just plain fresh. Almost reminds me of Diane Arbus, but more sexy and less creepy.
Now when I think of bread and art, I definitely did not imagine art on bread. Tibi Neuspiel’s work is extremely amusing and at the same time delicious? Using bread toast as inspiration and a variety of portraits, this artist definitely takes portraiture seriously, and toast too. The amazing sculptures are esthetically engaging while also intriguing. Tibi Neuspiel serves you a sandwich made with yummy toppings of toast, Hitler, cheese, Van Gogh’s ear and greek mythology.
When looking at Josh Podoll’s paintings they won’t give you anything to think about, and that is sort of the point. My eye gets caught in the air-brushed, optical illusion like, geometric patterns in a sort of empty, humming, awake way. Josh grew up in Fairfield Iowa – which is the former home of the Maharishi (of Beatles White Album fame) and one of the main centers for Transcendental Meditation in the US. He is in a show at Christopher Grimes Gallery in LA that opens January 16.
Gianna Commito makes paintings that feel almost sign-like – like a road sign warning you that the road has erupted and time is about to stop. The watercolor and gouache, or w.color and casein paintings don’t let you through the rabbit’s hole too quickly, but when given consideration they transform into tumultuous, imploding space scapes with virtuoso shifts in direction and scale. Using architectural source imagery allows the abstract paintings to have oddly real looking color and light shifts. In an interview Gianna compared the space in her paintings to origami or the inside of a tent. More paintings and a studio shot after the jump…