Dutch photographer Teun Hock’s photographs are clever, eye-catching, and surreal. Consistently using himself to convey a peculiar character, he depicts a middle-aged man who is perpetually trapped in self-depreciating and humorous situations. He is stuck in the middle of an ice floe while his bag, hat, and umbrella are carried away on separate pieces; he hangs from a swinging chandelier; he is blindfolded and wearing a birthday hat while walking on the moon, and using a ladder to measure the night sky.
His process is very labor intensive and his work extends far beyond the traditional boundaries of photography. As explained by the artist:
“…There’s a big backdrop that I paint or build, or whatever’s needed, and I stand in the middle of that. Then I take a picture of myself in black and white and enlarge it. I do it myself in the darkroom with a little bit of help. Then I tone the picture sepia. And later I add oil paint. I color everything, but it’s transparent, so that you can see the picture underneath.”
In addition to his work in photography, he was commissioned to design and paint stained glass windows for the Grote Kerk of Dorecht, a medieval church located in the Netherlands.
Lily Morris is an emerging artist based out of Brooklyn, NY. Detailed and yet distorted, her paintings depict foggy but seemingly familiar scenes that require squinting eyes and conjure a feeling akin to driving somewhere remote in the pouring rain. Her style fluctuates between washy layers of oil and solid photographic realism. Subjects and objects are caught exploding, describing the very instant an action occurs- the horrifying moment before perception intervenes and untangles what just happened. Morris’s paintings recount these inexplicable, fleeting moments of confusion and lay them out in raw and compelling fashion.
Jason John paints extraordinarily detailed scenes of dramatic narratives. These stories touch on the ephemeral side of a serendipitous coincidence – that cold forbidden zone of the wandering brain. More after the jump!
I’m really digging the often surreal, always vibrantly colorful and playfully geometric paintings of Paul Wackers.
From his artist’s statement: “My work is first a response to the world and then a reaction to what it has to offer. Images surround me as abstract concepts, presented by the curious interaction of forms, feelings, and situations. They offer a glimpse into the way the world is constantly being reloaded with opportunities and options for reinterpretations and impressions. It might start with a beam of light passing through a window in the afternoon and that within that beam there is the potential of a full spectrum to appear. In my paintings I try to create the feeling of getting lost in the thoughts that are easily ignored or put aside.”
I’m digging these psychedelic, surreal collages by Emir Šehanović. Check out his face-melting constructions after the jump. Unfortunately, there isn’t much information out there about the artist, but perhaps we can entice him to drop by Beautiful/Decay to share a bit of his story?
Marion Peck‘s paintings are all just a little bit twisted — and that is one of my favorite things about them. Peck has been a prolific painter these past few years, and now the art world is starting to show her some love. Her works juxtapose fluffy creatures and noble ladies with an assortment of creepy crawlers and obscene gestures. With such a mixture, there is bound to be a little something for everyone.
Born in Vietnam but raised in the USA, illustrator Tran Nguyen earned her BFA from Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) in 2009. Fascinated with the human psyche and interested in the psychologically therapeutic potential of art, Nguyen’s creations are often surreal, dream-like scenes. Sometimes tree stumps have eyes, twigs grow through ear canals, and miniature figures live in the folds of a gown. Besides being visually arresting, often the titles of her works are quite intriguing as well — for instance, “I Came Across a Wilting Cognition” (seen above), “We Vomit Carcasses of Unattended Thoughts,” and “Living Parallel To an Infectious Pigment,” to select a few.
Nancy Fouts seeks out varied objects that she marries poetically, to transform each one into a surprise version of itself. Make sure to see Nancy’s upcoming show at Pertwee Anderson & Gold in New York City in August.