Craft

Kaleidoscopic Patterns Coil Around Miniature Snakes Exquisitely Cast in Glass

January 14, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Ryan Eicher

Intricate linework and trippy, geometric motifs flow through the minuscule glass-blown serpents by Ryan Eicher. The Maryland-based artist casts smooth, colorful gradients, rainbow stripes, thin parallel bands, and intersecting helices within the snakes’ coiled bodies, a challenge considering the structure of the patterns shifts as he shapes the forms. Each miniature creature stretches only a few millimeters wide, and many of Eicher’s most recent pieces feature a mishmash of lines and shapes created with artists like Future Glass and Emerson, among others. You can find details about those collaborative pieces on Instagram, and head to Etsy to add one of the tiny snakes to your collection.

 

 

 



Animation

'The House' Is a Mysterious Animated Trilogy Following Three Generations of Stop-Motion Characters

January 14, 2022

Grace Ebert

A destitute family, an uneasy property developer, and an unrealistic landlady clinging to the past all find themselves grappling with control when they inhabit The House. The mysterious dwelling is the titular character of Netflix’s new three-part series that brings some of the most promising names of stop-motion animation to the major television platform.

Created at Nexus Studios, the dark comedy is a collaboration between Emma de Swaef and Marc Roels (previously), Niki Lindroth von Bahr, and Paloma Baeza, who each created a different segment of the story. The first part, set in the 1800s, features de Swaef and Roels’s pudgy, woolen characters, the second zeroes in on Lindroth von Bahr’s anxious rats in a present-day nightmare of cockroaches and hospital visits, and the final ventures to the near future with Baeza’s cats experiencing a post-climate crisis world. “The House is a collection of cinematic stories that are intelligent, witty, inquisitive, warm, and yet packed with offbeat humor,” Nexus co-founder Charlotte Bavasso said.

Ahead of its release today on Netflix, Short of The Week went behind-the-scenes with the animators and producers involved in the surreal trilogy, and get a tease of what’s to come in the trailer below.

 

 

 



Art

Teeming with Leaves and Grasses, Oil Paintings Cloaked in Lush Foliage Evoke the Forest Floor

January 14, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © JA Paunkovic, shared with permission

Thick foliage in shades of green sprout from every inch of JA Paunkovic’s canvases. The Serbian husband-and-wife duo of Jelena and Aleksandar render luxuriant scenes brimming with realistic plant life. Patches of verdant grasses, shrubs, and flowering specimens sprawl across the oil-based works, which mimic the lush patches of vegetation that the pair encounters while hiking.  “Visiting (a) new environment becomes material that will later serve us in the studio as a sketch for a new painting,” Jelena shares. “We have found a way to bring nature to a home or gallery and hang it on the wall to serve as a reminder that we need to think more about how our modern lifestyle affects the environment.”

In addition to working on a few commissions, the artists currently are building a new studio, and you can follow their progress on Instagram. Find limited-edition prints and originals in their shop.

 

 

 



Art Design

Aiming to Make Art More Accessible and Diverse, Apostrophe Puzzles Releases Artist-Designed Jigsaws

January 13, 2022

Grace Ebert

Liz Flores. All images © Apostrophe Puzzles, shared with permission

Apostrophe Puzzles is at the nexus of art and accessibility. Founder Mandi Masden launched the Brooklyn-based company in 2019 with the goal of making the works usually confined to galleries, museums, and the collections of wealthy patrons more affordable to average consumers. “I am really aiming to utilize puzzles to bridge the gap of accessibility to fine art and to make art collecting something everyone can participate in,” she explains.

The company, which borrows its name from the punctuation indicating either possession or omission, collaborates exclusively with contemporary artists of color to design 1,000-piece jigsaws featuring their works. In the last two years, it’s released two collections, with the most recent including Liz Flores’s colorful, abstract bodies, the powerfully posed women at the center of Tim Okamura’s portraits (previously), and Ronald Jackson’s masked figures.

Many of the jigsaws, which are printed on 100% recycled boards with non-toxic ink, have sold out their initial runs, a testament to Apostrophe’s mission. “We believe in the importance and necessity of diverse representation in both the puzzle and art world and hope that our collections help change the face of art consumerism,” the company said. Each purchase directly supports the creators— “We are currently at 12% for all artists and hope to continue to increase that number as we grow,” Masden shares—and a portion also is donated to the company’s nonprofit partner, ProjectArt, a tuition-free program offering art classes and residencies in partnership with public libraries.

Apostrophe plans to release four new puzzles annually, and you can purchase available designs and start collecting them all by heading to its shop.

 

Tim Okamura

Ronald Jackson

Tim Okamura

Liz Flores

Marianne Angeli Rodriguez

Vinita Karim

 

 



Craft

Learn to Paint Magical Scenes in Thread in a New Book by Embroidery Artist Emillie Ferris

January 13, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Emillie Ferris, courtesy of David & Charles, shared with permission

U.K.-based artist Emillie Ferris (previously) has spent nearly a decade refining her distinct embroidery technique, which involves staggering long and short stitches to create textured portrayals of flora and fauna. She’s crafted magical butterflies in smooth gradients, bees that appear as fuzzy as their real-life counterparts, and a variety of realistic portraits that use sweeping, layered passes associated with brushstrokes to render images in fiber.

Now her work culminates in a forthcoming book published by David & Charles titled Paint with Thread: A Step-By-Step Guide to Embroidery Through the Seasons. The how-to volume contains instructions for creating five projects shown here, in addition to tips and tricks from the artist, and is available for pre-order on Bookshop. In the meantime, shop more of Ferris’s tutorials and patterns on Etsy.

 

 

 



Art

Imaginative Glass Specimens Are Suspended in Jars in Steffen Dam's Cabinets of Curiosities

January 13, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Heller Gallery

Held in tall, transparent jars are recreations of tiny jellyfish with wispy tentacles, plankton, and other delicate sea creatures by Danish artist Steffen Dam (previously). He sculpts the miniature organisms in glass and displays the exquisite creations in wooden boxes or medicine cases that evoke the 16th Century wunderkammers or cabinets of curiosities. Generally in the possession of aristocrats and monarchs, these encyclopedic collections predated museums and held objects that were valuable for scientific study and their ability to inspire wonder and awe. Although Dam’s sculptures reference the colors, textures, and shapes of real-life specimens, his imaginative works are inventive interpretations of evolution and biology.

Find more of the artist’s recent works on his site and at Heller Gallery in New York, where he’s represented.

 

“Wunderkammer” (2021), 
glass and illuminated wooden presentation box, 
35 3/8 x 27 1/2 x 7 inches

Detail of “Wunderkammer” (2021), 
glass and illuminated wooden presentation box, 
35 3/8 x 27 1/2 x 7 inches

“Pangaean Zoology” (2018), 20 elements in glass, 72 inches

“Marine Group” (2020), glass and illuminated presentation box, 13 3/4 x 39 x 7 7/8 inches

“Specimen Block” (2017), 
glass, 
11 3/8 x 11 3/8 x 1 1/2 inches

“New Medicine” (2017), 
glass and illuminated wooden presentation box
, 30 1/4 x 17 1/4 x 9 inches

“Marine Specimen Collection” (2018), 
glass, 
tallest 8 3/4 inches

Detail of “Specimen Cabinet” (2017), glass and illuminated wooden presentation box, 
39 1/4 x 24 3/8 x 9 3/8 inches

Detail of “The Journey to M31” (2021)

 

 

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