portraits

Posts tagged
with portraits



Art Craft

A Studio Interview with Embroidery Portrait Artist Cayce Zavaglia

February 12, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Embroidery artist Cayce Zavaglia (previously) creates mesmerizing portraits of everyday people using cotton thread and wool. In this thoughtful video profile, Jesse Brass (previously) takes a closer look at Zavaglia’s process and speaks with the artist about her work. In their conversation, Zavaglia emphasizes the importance of seeing the beauty in ordinary life, and explains the symbolic significance of each portrait’s verso. She has a show of new works coming up in May 2018 at Lyons Wier Gallery in New York. Brass shares many more artist profiles on Vimeo.

 

 

 

 



Art

Official Portraits of Barack and Michelle Obama by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald

February 12, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Barack Obama by Kehinde Wiley, oil on canvas, 2018. Courtesy National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.

The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery in Washington, D.C., which was created in 1962 by an Act of Congress, is the only location outside of the White House with a collection of portraits of former United States Presidents. Today, Barack and Michelle Obama unveiled their likenesses, created by Kehinde Wiley and Amy Sherald, respectively. The Obamas selected the artists—Wiley and Sherald are the first African American artists to be commissioned for presidential portraits.

Wiley’s depiction of President Obama features the artist’s signature style of richly-hued background patterns setting a vibrant symbolic environment for the portrait’s subject. President Obama is surrounded by a carefully selected variety of foliage: jasmine, which represents Hawaii; African blue lilies for his father’s Kenyan heritage; and Chicago’s official flower, the chrysanthemum.  For Mrs. Obama’s portrait, Sherald engaged her distinctive combination of depicting skin tone in grayscale, offset by the sharply rendered full-color fabric of Mrs. Obama’s floor-length dress.

The Smithsonian shares with Colossal that the portraits will be on view to the public beginning Tuesday, February 13th. Wiley’s painting of President Obama will be permanently installed in the Portrait Gallery’s “America’s Presidents” exhibition, and Sherald’s portrait of Mrs. Obama will be displayed in the museum’s “Recent Acquisitions” corridor through November 2018. Sherald also has a solo show at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis, which opens May 11, 2018.

Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama by Amy Sherald, oil on linen, 2018. Courtesy National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.

 

 



Art Photography

Colorful Portraits of Adoptable Dogs Photographed by Paul Octavious

January 3, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Photographer Paul Octavious (previously) casts new light on Chicago’s adoptable dogs through a collaboration with PAWS, the city’s largest no-kill animal shelter. Octavious, an editorial and commercial photographer, explained to Colossal that he was on a shoot for NBC when he thought to pair the vibrant HUE lighting setup with rescue pups that were set to be photographed with characters from a NBC TV show. Octavious ended up spotlighting the animals themselves with the HUE lighting, resulting in these colorful portraits, and he has continued to volunteer his time helping to get Chicago’s homeless pets adopted with his ResHue Dog series. You can follow Paul on Instagram and learn more about available pets at PAWS.

 

 



Art Photography

Puzzling Portraits of Identical Twins by Photographer Alma Haser

November 29, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

In her latest series, German photographer Alma Haser combines the portraits of several pairs of twins by literally puzzling their images together. Haser first photographs each twin separately, then prints their corresponding photograph onto a 500 or 1000-piece puzzle. Finally, Haser painstakingly switches every other piece to create two works that are an equal combination of each sibling.

In earlier works in the series Haser only switched the twins’ faces, rather than melding their entire portraits. In the side-by-side images of the the twin brothers below it is difficult to tell if anything is swapped, unless you narrow your focus to the subjects’ eyes.

Haser recently contributed a few portraits from this series to the group exhibition The Body Issue: Human Stories at NOW Gallery in London. You can see more of her portraiture involving twins on her website and Instagram, and shop select prints on her online store. (via Hi-Fructose)

 

 

 



Art Design Photography

The Secret Life of the Pencil: An Abstract Portrait Series of Today’s Creatives as Seen Through Their Pencils

November 8, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Celia Birtwell

Photographer Mike Tinney and industrial designer Alex Hammond were discussing the current state of technology and creativity when they had an observation: with enormous advances in technology, client demands for speed and quick turnaround often venture into the unreasonable leaving precious little time for thinking, sketching, or ideation. Despite advancements in software, the duo found that pencils remained central to their own process of formulating ideas and began to wonder if this held through across creative industries.

“The pencil and its ability to bridge the gap between hand and paper so effectively makes it exceptionally powerful, and as we’ve found, still much loved amongst the creative heroes of our generation,” shares Hammond. As they reached out to other established artists, designers, and photographers they began to request writing utensils to photograph using a special setup. “For each pencil we art directed the shoot to have a very subtle ‘nod’ to them or their work. When that wasn’t suitable, we let the pencil they had chosen to represent them talk for itself, documenting them in their purest form.”

Tinney and Hammond gathered the pencil portraits together in the new book The Secret Life of the Pencil available worldwide through Laurence King.

William Boyd

Dave Eggers

Tracey Emin

Thomas Heatherwick

Henry Holland

Anish Kapoor

Nick Park

Gerald Scarfe

David Shrigley

 

 



Art Craft Photography

Colorfully Embroidered Vintage Photos of Artists and Cultural Icons by Victoria Villasana

October 27, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Working with appropriated vintage photographs of artists, musicians, and politicians, Mexican textile artist Victoria Villasana applies a colorfully whimsical layer of embroidery atop each image. Criss-crosses of color and bright highlights around the eyes seem to lend a sense of empowerment to the works which often depict feminist icons from singer Nina Simone to artist Frida Kahlo. Villasana also takes her works into the streets and creates hybrid yarn bomb paste-ups from small stickers to entire murals. You can see more of her recent work on Instagram.

 

 



Art

Three-Dimensional Portraits of Suspended Paint Strokes by Chris Dorosz

October 24, 2017

Laura Staugaitis

Rather than considering paint as a liquid medium, San Francisco-based artist Chris Dorosz uses the traditional material as a unit of measure to form anonymous sculptural portraits. At first glance, the three-dimensional paintings read as abstract compilations of shapes, and only once the viewer looks head-on at the portrait does a human figure begin to emerge.

As he writes in his artist statement, Dorosz considers the paint drop to be “a form that takes shape not from a brush or any human-made implement or gesture, but purely from its own viscosity and the air it falls through, as analogous to the building blocks that make up the human body (DNA) or even its mimetic representation (the pixel).”

Dorosz is represented by Scott Richards Contemporary Art. The suite of four busts, entitled Rosh, is on view November 18, 2017 at the Muriel Guépin Gallery in New York.