The Dense Microcosmic Worlds of Painter Robert S. Connett

January 19, 2016

Johnny Strategy

Robert S Connet - MICROVERSE II


Since he was a child, Robert S. Connett was fascinated by nature. And not just any type of nature, but the tiny worlds that quietly exist without being discovered. They thrive under rocks and under microscopes and Connett was the kid who went out looking for them, bringing home everything from spiders and earwigs to snakes. This perhaps explains the self-taught painter’s equally fascinating worlds he conjures on a canvas, often in painstaking detail.

These “underworlds,” as Connett describes them, are often comprised of densely populated organisms. Some look like a droplet of seawater under a microscope. Others resemble a Where’s Waldo version of our amazing animal kingdom. Any could be a small square of Hieronymus Bosch’s “The Garden of Earthly Delights,” magnified hundreds of times.

The organisms are a combination of accurate depictions based on scientific observation, as well as plucked from the artist’s own mind. They are worlds that Connett himself would want to walk into and we can’t blame him! His most recent work—a total of 7 paintings—will be shown at the upcoming annual Los Angeles Art Show that runs from January 27 – 31, 2016. You’ll find Connett’s work at the Copro Gallery booth in a section aptly titled “Littletopia”. Many of his pieces are also available as prints. (via Hi-Fructose)

Robert S Connet - MICROVERSE II

detail of “MICROVERSE II” (2015)





Robert S Connet - StarFish

“STAR FISH” (2015)


Sea Flowers (2014)



Art Photography

New Portraits of Fashionably Dressed Wildlife and Floral Bouquets by Miguel Vallinas

January 18, 2016

Christopher Jobson


In his long-running portrait series Second Skins, artist Miguel Vallinas (previously) uses photographic portraits of wildlife as a starting point to construct fictional wardrobes that he imagines each animal might wear if it were dressed as a human. Vallinas has an uncanny ability to select the perfect colors and textures for each outfit he photographs, bestowing the animals with a clear sense of character and an unusual authenticity.

On the surface, Second Skins is a humorous series of portraits guaranteed for a smile, but dig a bit deeper and Vallinas suggests the images reveal a more about human nature than the animal kingdom. Specifically, how we perceive people based on appearance and how we create narratives in our mind based wholly on what we see. Vallinas says he is also examining elements of self-perception, specifically “what we believe we are, what others think we are, what we really are, and what we would like to be.”

For his latest body of work titled Roots, Vallinas again explores identity through similarly dressed boquets of flowers or plants matched with remarkably fitting attire. You can see much more on his website.












Art Music

Portraits of Chinese Rockstars Imagined as Monumental Temples

January 18, 2016

Christopher Jobson


Chinese artist DU Kun has long harbored a reverence for music and rockstars. A musician himself, the Beijing-based painter is awed by the creation of music, aspects of fame, and the intangible aura of being a revered rockstar, something he tries to capture is these temple-like portraits of famous Chinese recording artists titled “Revels of the Rock Gods”.

Each oil painting depicts the face of a musician as if it were a temple built in devotion to a god and borrows elements from Buddhist and Confucian architecture. Eyes are depicted as windows, tree branches or waterfalls as flowing hair, and the surface of skin as ornate wood facades gilded with gold.

Kun is currently exhibiting the “Revels of the Rock Gods” series as part of his first solo show in Japan at Mizuma Art Gallery in Tokyo through February 13, 2016. You can explore close-up details plus an archive of Kun’s work on his website. (via Hi-Fructose)













Hypnotic New Kinetic Sculptures by Anthony Howe

January 15, 2016

Christopher Jobson


Di-Octo. All stainless steel kinetic wind sculpture. Silent operation. 25’6″h x 10’w x 4’6″”d (7.8m h x 3m w x 1.4m d) 1,600lbs (725kg)

Artist Anthony Howe (previously) continues to amaze with his gargantuan kinetic sculptures powered by wind or motors that cycle continuously through hypnotic motions that resemble something between the tentacles of an octopus and an alien spacecraft. Weighing up to 1,600 lbs (725kg), each artwork is first built digitally to test how it will move and react to the force of wind once fabricated in the real world. Seen here are three new sculptures titled Di-Octo, In Cloud Light III, and Switchback. You can see more recent work in his portfolio.


In Cloud III. 7.6 meter tall all stainless kinetic wind powered sculpture. Engineered for extreme high winds yet spins in 2mph. (25′ h x 10’w x 5’d, 1,500lbs), shown here not on pedestal.


Switchback. Gear motor powered, variable speed, all stainless kinetic sculpture for interior or exterior installation. 112″h x 60″w x 34″d.



Animation Art Photography

Dreamy Animated Light Paintings by Lucea Spinelli

January 13, 2016

Christopher Jobson


NYC-based photographer Lucea Spinelli has a special appreciation for light and motion in her series of moving images titled Phōtosgraphé. She utilizes chairs, swing sets, and park benches as backdrops and props for luminous forms that seem to bounce effortlessly through the frame. In some pieces the light mimics the pathway of ghostly human figures while in others it sparkles like fireflies or expands like a rainbow. You can see more from the series here.


Bench 650w

Book on Fire  650

Isle 650w

The Conversation sm




Fantastical Paintings of Animals Within Post-Apocalyptic Environments by Martin Wittfooth

January 12, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski


Martin Wittfooth transposes the temperament we typically associate with large animals to those much smaller, painting foxes and birds as the heroic victors of this works while making larger animals much more passive and calm. Each of his paintings feature these creatures in environments that deviate from the peaceful surrounding we would expect—trash and decay littering the the ground while smog fills the sky.

“As a species we share a pretty significant degree of similar reactions to the natural world: there are forms in nature that we seem to have innate responses to,” said Wittfooth in an interview with beinArt. “Like a sense of awe or respect for large mammals, and revulsion for spiders and snakes. I’m interested in this kind of shared pattern recognition and instinctive responses. I’m pretty invested in trying to imbue my paintings with some sense of ‘presence’ and hence am working with subject matter that can impart an emotional reading of it, not just a rational (strictly observing) analysis.”

The Brooklyn-based painter’s work is included with 27 other artists fascinated with the wild form in the new book Juxtapoz Wild. You can see more of Wittfooth’s work on his Facebook page here. (via Juxtapoz)











Warped Human Forms Hand-Carved from Wood by Paul Kaptein

January 12, 2016

Christopher Jobson


Perth-based artist Paul Kaptein works with large blocks of laminated wood to reveal warped and distorted human figures, some pierced with a smattering of holes linked with drawn lines like star constellations. The hand-carved busts and figurative sculptures are additionally punctuated by gaps formed from the laminating process, creating the impression of digital glitches or images skewed by poor reception. Kaptein says he’s interested in examining the undefined area between expansion and contraction, or interconnection and incompleteness. Even as the viewer walks around each piece, it continues to surprise as the warped nature of each artwork continues to push and sink in seemingly every direction.

Kaptein currently has work on view as part of an exhbition titled “Future Perfect” at Krause Gallery in New York through January 26, 2016, and you can see more in his online gallery. (via Booooooom, Designboom)