Many painters working from photographic source material employ a wide variety of techniques to arrive at a final image. This will involve anything from loose sketching beforehand to complex grids, where a photograph is translated into paint box by box. Such is not the case with British painter Nathan Walsh who instead relies on elaborate drawings reminiscent of architectural blueprints before every committing paint to canvas. This deep reverence for the underpinning geometry and perspective gives each work a sense of life that might otherwise not be present in something created with the mechanical aid of a camera or software.
Walsh tells me his primary source materials are not photographs but pencil sketches drawn on-site, for example the Chicago pieces above began from over 100 drawings he then references in his studio. In this way he can easily alter the position and size of any particular element, a process he likens to “building a world from scratch”. Personally I think the process is more akin to building the entire world in his mind so he can better represent it later in his paintings, each of which takes up to 3-4 months to complete. Via his website:
I deal exclusively with the urban landscape and aim to present a painted world which in some ways resembles the world we live in. I am fascinated by the city, it’s visual complexity and constant state of flux. The act of painting is an attempt fix this information and give vision to our experience of living within it. [...] The work aims to create credible and convincing space which whilst making reference to our world displays it’s own distinct logic. This space is created through drawing, which I see as fundamental in establishing a world the viewer can engage with. Drawing allows me to make human pictorial decisions instead of relying on the mechanical eye of a camera or software package. This process is open ended and changes from one painting to the next. Whilst I employ a variety of perspectival strategies, these methods are not fixed or rigid in their application. Working with a box of pencils and an eraser I will start by establishing an horizon line on which I will place vanishing points to construct simple linear shapes which become subdivided into more complex arrangements.
You can see numerous final works at a much higher resolution, as well as initial drawings over on his website. Walsh will have work at the Changing Perspectives technology conference in Paris later this month, and is working on a solo show at Bernarducci Meisel Gallery in November.
It would appear no object is too small for artist Hasan Kale to utilize as a canvas for his miniature paintings. The Turkish artist makes use of everything from fruit seeds to the wings of taxidermied insects as a backdrop for depictions of his native Istanbul. See much more here, and watch the videos above to see him work… love how he uses his finger as a palette. (via bhakta)
Italian graffiti writer, painter and sculptor Manuel Di Rita (aka Peeta) lives and works in Venice where since 2000 he has risen to international fame for his unique 3D graffiti style. Using a variety of shading, gradients and shadows his work often appears to be hovering just off the surface on which it is painted. Peeta not only creates work in public spaces but also creates similar figures with paint on cavas as well as sculptures. Above is a mixture of artworks both old and new, and you can see much more over on Flickr and at Ayden Gallery.
Artist Federico Uribe (previously here and here) just released a lovely new collection of work made from electrical and a/v cables called, appropriately, Contectado. Uribe works almost exclusively with multitudes of repurposed objects to create vibrantly colored sculptures and 2D artworks like this. Via Now:
Uribe creates sculptures which are not sculpted but constructed and weaved, in all kinds of different ways, curious and unpredictable, repetitive and almost compulsive. They follow the classics canons of figurative and abstract art, but the result is absolutely unusual, whimsical, of enormous efficacy and communicability. When observed from close, his works reveal various kinds of interpretations; they invite us to touch them, to discover the detail and connection between one element and another. When viewed form further away, they offer volumes, forms, textures and color. Distance, proximity and perception are key factors in the interaction between Uribe’s work and its viewers.
You can see many more artworks from this series on his website.
Los Carpinteros is a Havana-based artist collective currently comprised of Marco Castillo and Dagoberto Rodríguez (a third member, Alexandre Arrechea, left in 2003) who produce a wide range of works including sculpture, installation, and film. My favorite of their works are these lovely abstract paintings of Legos and other structural or architectural pieces. Via Sean Kelly Gallery:
Interested in the intersection between art and society, the group merges architecture, design, and sculpture in unexpected and often humorous ways. They create installations and drawings which negotiate the space between the functional and the nonfunctional. The group’s elegant and mordantly humorous sculptures, drawings, and installations draw their inspiration from the physical world—particularly that of furniture. Their carefully crafted works use humor to exploit a visual syntax that sets up contradictions among object and function as well as practicality and uselessness. For Los Carpinteros, drawing has played an integral role as a mock technical draft or form of a blue print that suggests not only a process of artistic elaboration but also a form of architectural or carpentry plans.
You can explore over 100 of their paintings in high resolution on their website, and don’t miss this interactive 360 degree walkthrough of an exploded room at Hayward Gallery in 2008. (via faith is torment)
Every single day in 2013 San Francisco-based artist Klari Reis is creating an abstract painting inside the confines of the humble petri dish, a cylindrical container used by biologists to culture the growth of cells and algae, something the paintings seem to directly resemble. Called ‘Daily Dish 2013‘ the project is a continuation of a series Reis completed back in 2009, but at a cursory glance I’m already enjoying the 2013 series much more. Despite the limitation of medium and space, it’s amazing to see the variation of color and depth each painting has, for some reason it reminded me of Jason Fried’s 2007 SvN post about the variation of watch faces. (via coudal)
I’m really enjoying the perspective and mood in these oil paintings by Valerio D’Ospina. Born in southern Italy but now living and working in Pennsylvania the artist paints gritty scenes from industry including ship yards, trains, and factories as well as broad “urbanscapes” that are captured from a dramatic, almost blurred perspective. His most recent solo show was at Hall Spassov Gallery back in October. (via cosas cool)
San Francisco-based artist Jeremy Mann lives and works in San Francisco where he executes these sublime, moody cityscapes using oil paints. To create each work he relies on a wide range of techniques including surface staining, the use of solvents to wipe away paint, and the application of broad, gritty marks with an ink brayer. The resulting paintings are dark and atmospheric, urban streets seemingly drenched in rain and mystery. Mann’s work is in no way limited to cityscapes, he also paints the human figure, still lifes, and landscapes. He currently has work at John Pence Gallery and you can see many more of his cityscapes here. (via my darkened eyes)