Soft Core – Erik Ravelo’s Kama Sutra Inspired Figurative Installations

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Kama Sutra

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Cuban artist Erik Ravelo is known for his ability to confront the difficult and taboo directly by presenting fearless, visually provocative work (previously featured for his Los Intocables, or The Untouchables, series here). Lana Sutra (combining the Spanish word ‘Lana’ meaning ‘Wool’ and ‘Sutra’, which means the thread which connects us) takes the idea of these strings – love, humanity, sexuality – and displays them literally, binding human forms together in intense colored poses. “I’m a human being and I don’t believe in borders. I think the world belongs to everyone born on Earth. This is my planet, our planet. No man is an island. Yes, I was born on Cuba but, above all, I was born on Planet Earth. I like to think that Lana Sutra talks about universal love which cancels diversity.”

Created during his residency at Italian communication research and artistic grant center Fabrica (connected with clothing brand United Colors of Benneton), Ravelo began Lana Sutra by guiding models to pose together, and then casting these poses in plaster. The plaster mannequins were then covered in yarn (in the fall colors of the Benneton line), with separate colored threads from each mannequin being bound together in Kama Sutra positions. Bursting with color, the fifteen installations of present a completely unbiased version of humanity, no longer separated by race, religion, creed or sexuality, and merely bound by our shared humanity. (via collater.al)

Patty Carroll’s Ghostly Women Draped In Fabric

Patty Carroll - Photography

Patty Carroll - Photography

Patty Carroll - Photography

Patty Carroll - Photography

Patty Carroll photographs women who hide behind fabric. In her series, Anonymous Women: Draped, she features figures sitting and standing, all shrouded in luscious fabrics, rugs, and more. These women are invisible, meant to convey the idea that as we perfect the space of our home, it can fuse with our identity. Carroll’s choice in fabrics harkens another era, and look like they could be in the house of a grandparent. The Nuclear family of the 1950′s and 1960′s comes to mind in her work, when women’s roles were often domestically confined. Carroll writes about the series and the inspiration and implications behind it, stating:

I am addressing the double edge of domesticity; the home as a place of comfort, or conversely, a place where decoration camouflages one’s individuality to the point of claustrophobia. The draperies in these photographs act as both a visual cue as well as a literal interpretation of over-identification/obsession! While my direct sources for this series come from furnishing a home, as well as remembering the nuns in their habits while growing up, this series also references draped statues from the Renaissance, women wearing the burka, the Virgin Mary, ancient Greek and Roman dress, priests’ and judges’ robes, among others. I believe everyone has a hidden identity formed by personal traditions, memories, and ideas that are cloaked from the outer world. Cultivating these inner psychological, emotional and intellectual worlds is perhaps our greatest challenge as people, wherever we come from or wherever we live. (Via I need a guide)

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Spanish Artist Antonio Santin’s Deceptively Realistic Rug Paintings

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Upon first glance, these paintings by Spanish artist Antonio Santin appear to be photographs of beautiful rugs with bodies hidden underneath. Take a closer look and you can see the amazing detailed work that Santin has created in order for these rugs to appear real. Using a deeply-rooted tradition of Spanish Tenebrism and his training as a sculptor, Santin paints using the play of light and shadow to create depth and a haunting realism.

Interested in the way bodies shape fabrics, in an interview with Hi-Fructose, he says, “Painting is essentially a superficial activity, the artist’s psychology translates into a certain colored texture that will in turn eventually trigger or host the unique psychology of the beholder. Thus, according to this transitional synesthesia, any represented face is an enlivened mask. My background is sculpture, a discipline that could as well be defined as the development of structural strategies that end up supporting a surface. Not being its main raison d’être, the surface does conceal and contain the essence of the volume, whose physicality permeates its vessel while existing often only in the territory of the imagination. Therefore, whether it is a face, a dress or a rug, for me, it’s all about grasping what is hidden or concealed.  (via from89)

Large Scale Organic Installations Made From Bright Balls Of Fabric



Chilean artist Serena Garcia Dalla Venezia creates large, colorful fabric installations fashioned from small handmade balls of fabric filled with cotton and sewn together. Inspired by ideas of growth and accumulation, order and chaos, Dalla Venezia’s work is intricate and her process is organic. During this process, she is mindful of the color gradations and contrasts, creating a populated color palette that almost appears pixelated.

Vibrant Collages Mirror The Artist’s Oakland Surroundings

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Inspired by her Oakland surroundings and the mysterious life of collected objects (from homeless shopping carts to a public disposal & recycling area), Amy Wilson Faville collages her own drawings in with an assortment of vibrant materials such as old mattress fabric, file folders, vintage wallpaper, and other scraps. Comparable to quilt-making, Faville’s compositions incorporate consistent patterns with eclectic pops of color, conceptually mirroring her subject matter.

Speaking on her Carts series specifically, Faville states, “My goal was to use the power of beauty to transform images of squalor into splendor.”

Canan Cengel

It’s pretty fun discovering the fetus shapes in each of these sangria colored pieces of wrinkled fabric. I know, that probably sounds weird but Canan Cengel really deserves all praises for her eye on detail, creating the perfect positioning and shadowing for her aptly titled project: f. Check the rest below.

Todd Knopke Turns Fabric Into Paint

Todd Knopke

We posted Todd Knowpke’s work a while back but he has some new works on his site so it’s time to take a second look. When i first saw Todd’s work online I thought “wow these are funky shaped stretchers.” It took me a few minutes to realize that I was staring at massive, mind blowing, sewn pieces of fabric! What I love best is that Todd keeps all the various moves that most painters make  but makes them his own by introducing sewn fabric into the mix. The result is a collage like surface full of stitching, layered fabric, and awesome detail.