Michael Anthony Simon: Redefining Boundaries

In the fall of 2009 artist Michael Anthony Simon left Chicago behind, and moved to the countryside of Korea.  He wanted to experience a new place and culture that would hopefully inform a fresh body of work that could exist beyond the constraints of the western art world.  In the spring of 2011, contemporary artist, Ai Weiwei was arrested on falsified charges of tax evasion by a notoriously conservative Chinese government.  The claims were suspect to say the least, and many silent protests were organized throughout the world by major museums and institutions calling for his release.  These silent protests became a louder gesture than anything anyone could have audibly said.  This act of defiant solidarity became a source of motivation for Simon in the year to come.  Realizing that by attempting to silence something you make it’s presence that much more apparent he commenced on a series entitled “The Silence Paintings”.  Analyzing the design and significance of the word ‘silence’ in different languages lead him to the creation of an intuitive process that would allow for compositions to develop naturally, but with purpose and intention.

Michelle Morin’s Natural World

Michelle Morin’s works are beautifully detailed natural scenes depicting flora and fauna. Each of her pieces is full of painted texture, and puts an earthy calm spin on classical animal paintings. As a once professional gardener, she has a unique insight into her subject matter. I think it makes all the difference, don’t you?

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Emma Löfström

Emma Löfström is a Swedish illustrator and artist whose work is eerie, narrative and has an otherworldly depth. Each of her pieces has this air of mystery behind it with subjects ranging from nature to magic to surrealistic creatures. Some of her works seem like a storybook which I for one would be enamored to get my hands on. 

Steven Kenny

 

Steven Kenny’s portraiture and figure paintings form a vibrant commentary on the nature of balance, sexuality, and that fickle concept: transcendence. Controlling a unique penchant for lighting and surrealism, Kenny has filled a rich portfolio with figures and dynamic echoes that pervade every sense with which we associate being alive.

Carly Waito is Crystal Clear

Carly Waito’s paintings are so crystal clear you have to look twice to make sure they’re not photos. They’re all oil paintings on panel and I’ve gotta say, this is one girl who has surely mastered her craft. She’s picked such interesting gems as subjects, and represents them flawlessly. I’m just as enamored with every new one I see as I was with the one before. She exhibits with Narwhal Art Projects in Toronto, Canada, if you’re lucky enough to be in the area, I’m sure they’re breathtaking in person. 

Fumi Mini Nakamura

Originally from Japan, illustrator and graphic design artist Fumi Mini Nakamura now works out of the NYC area. Her works in graphite and colored pencil feature a unique cast of characters: human figures rendered in striking photo-negative-like detail; flocks of feathered and toothed creatures; the occasional skull. The mixture of natural and imaginary elements always seems just right, rather than chaotic and disorganized. Examine some more of her works for yourself after the jump.

Ellie Cryer’s Chasing Storms

If Ellie Cryer weren’t focusing on drawing she’d be chasing storms or spotting planes, both of which occupations are probably in high demand seeing as the recent events in Alabama and Pakistan (yes, us killing Osama means we should be on an even higher terror alert). Luckily, despite the allure, her focus seems to be on the drawing board where she brings together an exotic mix of color with human emotion attached to nature and other surreal elements. Enjoy more of he work below.

Kate MacDowell

Sculptures by Kate MacDowell. Her work explores the impact of humans on nature, using porcelain clay and exquisite technical skill.