Art

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Art Craft

Rosy, Voluptuous Lips and Moody Faces Enliven Ceramic Vessels by Artist Tatiana Cardona

July 2, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Tatiana Cardona, shared with permission

Tatiana Cardona’s ceramic planters, mugs, and vases might pucker up for a kiss but their lips will never tell. The Miami-based artist, who runs the shop Female Alchemy, creates playful vessels featuring pursed lips lined in reds and pinks and minimal faces with moody expressions. “The concept of lips was inspired by the feminist movement in the ’60s-’70s where red lipstick stood as a symbol of protest. The work has since then evolved into a positive and fun way to promote femininity in a sacred and ancient medium such as ceramics,” she writes in a statement.

Cardona tells Colossal she hopes that her work evolves beyond the solitary vessels into “a space where female creativity is encouraged and nurtured.” The artist will release her next collection Summer of Love on Instagram and has some sticker packs available in her shop.

 

 

 



Art

Ornate Fabrics Cloak Models in Disquieting Portraits by Artist Markus Åkesson

June 30, 2020

Grace Ebert

“The Grove” (2020), oil on canvas, 180 x 140 centimeters. All images © Markus Åkesson, shared with permission

Swedish artist Markus Åkesson enshrouds his subjects in elaborately patterned silks and satins, leaving only the impression of their faces, limbs, and torsos visible. An extension of his ongoing Now You See Me series, the artist’s latest paintings continue his exploration of repetition and the unsettling feelings evoked by being wrapped in fabric. By completely covering his models, they “became a secret. Instead, I started to tell a story within the pattern itself, like a sub-narrative in the painting,” he writes.

Åkesson’s pieces begin with designing the traditional, florid motifs that are printed onto the largely unshaped fabrics. The artist then envelops models in the textiles before posing the subjects for the discomfiting portraits. “I have always been interested in patterns, I am drawn to the repetition and the rhythm,” he tells Colossal. “I did a lot of paintings with people that were surrounded by patterns, different surfaces, and materials, almost drowning in them. Eventually, they became completely covered in fabrics.”

Åkesson’s work will be on view this fall at Da-End Gallery in Paris. Until then, follow his heavily patterned paintings on Instagram.

 

“At the heart of it all (2020), oil on canvas, 60 x 50 centimeters

“Now You See Me” (2019), oil on canvas, 180 x 140 centimeters

“Yellow Veil” (2019), oil on canvas

“Now you see me (Dysmorphia 10)” (2018), oil on canvas, 145 x 100 centimeters

“Now you see me (Blue and Gold Kimono)” (2019), oil on canvas, 180 x 140 centimeters

“In the quiet morning” (2020), oil on canvas, 145 x 100 centimeters

“Danse Macabre” (2020), oil on canvas, 145 x 100 centimeters

 

 



Art

Organic, Sunrise Gradients Mask Front Pages of The New York Times by Artist Sho Shibuya

June 30, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Sho Shibuya, shared with permission

For many people, blocking out the news has meant logging off of Twitter and resisting the urge to check every breaking update. But Sho Shibuya has taken a more literal approach to the stress-reducing action. The Brooklyn-based artist and founder of the design studio Placeholder has taken to painting over the front page of The New York Times with vibrant gradients that mimic the day’s sunrise.

Beginning in March when cities began to lock down, Shibuya realized that his sensory perceptions of the world changed. “Some days passed and I realized that from the small windows of my studio, I could not hear the sounds of honking cars or people shouting,” he says. “I could hear the birds chirping energetically and sound of wind in the trees, and I looked up and saw the bright sky, beautiful as ever despite the changed world beneath it.”

Shibuya began to photograph the sunrise each morning, recreating each rich gradient in acrylic. His color choices are inspired largely by the Japanese ukiyo-e artist Hiroshige, who was commended for his bokashi gradient technique and signature blue tones. Each of Shibuya’s works maintains the header and date of the publication. “I started to capture the moment in the newspaper, contrasting the anxiety of the news with the serenity of the sky, creating a record of my new normal,” he says. “Their front page has always been a time capsule of a day in history, so it made sense to use history as the canvas because the paintings are meant to capture a moment in time.”

The spirit of the project is that maybe, even after the pandemic subsides, people can continue some of the generosity and peace we discovered in ourselves and that the sky reminds us of every day with a sunrise through a small window. If one thing the news has made clear, we need generosity and peace for all people now more than ever.

To follow the daily record, check out Shibuya’s Instagram, where he shares updates on the optimistic series. (via Spoon & Tamago)

 

 

 



Art

Interactive Event with Paint Kartel Teaches Seniors to Create Bold Graffiti in Belgrade

June 29, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Street Art Belgrad and Paint Kartel, by Nemanja Stojanović, shared with permission

A recent workshop hosted by Street Art Belgrade paired up members of the Serbian collective Paint Kartel with seniors interested in the public art form. Throughout the interactive event, participants learned about graffiti and its history, in addition to some practical tips for creating their own largely spray-painted works. “Although street art has been an indispensable part of the urban environment, the wider community is usually unfamiliar with the development and value of this visual expression,” organizers said. ‘The older generations connected with the younger ones in a unique way and challenged the stereotype that street art is only for ‘young people.'” See some of the works-in-progress below, and for more of Paint Kartel and Street Art Belgrade’s community-based initiatives, follow them on Instagram. (via I Support Street Art)

 

 

 



Art Illustration

Sinuous Snakes, Insects, and Florals Intertwine in Graphite Illustrations by Zoe Keller

June 27, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Where We Once Lived II,” copper belly water snake, graphite on paper, 14 x 14 inches. All images © Zoe Keller, shared with permission

Through a winding series of delicate illustrations, Zoe Keller (previously) explores the fragility of the natural world. In Scale & Bone, the Portland-based illustrator renders copper belly water snakes, San Francisco garters, and eastern diamondback rattlers through sinuous compositions that are ripe with skeletal remains, rows of butterflies, and dense patches of fungi. Each graphite drawing examines the tension between life and death and how nature’s processes are cyclical, including the shedding and regeneration of tube-like layers of skin.

Keller’s work considers the beauty of the limbless reptiles in an effort to subvert cultural notions. “Snakes, in particular, fascinate me as a subject matter because they elicit such a strong response in so many people,” she shares with Colossal. Scale & Bone is part of a larger effort to visualize the destruction of ecosystems and widespread loss of biodiversity. “Through the use of visual narratives that are interjected with surreal and magical elements, I hope to allow the species in my drawings to speak with urgency to the forces causing their decline in this time of human-driven mass extinction,” she writes.

Many of Keller’s projects fall at the intersection of art and environmental activism, offering
“opportunities to collaborate directly with scientists working on the ground to protect imperiled species.” The illustrator recently worked with Save the Snakes, an organization that steers conservation efforts and attempts to reduce harm by humans. Her serpent-focused poster will be unveiled this summer in time for World Snake Day.

Scale & Bone currently is on view at Antler Gallery, which is offering a virtual tour on its site. Follow Keller on Instagram for updates on her intertwined illustrations, and check her shop for prints, postcards, and stickers.

 

“Black Pine Snake,” graphite on paper, 34 x 43 inches

“Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake,” graphite on paper, 34 x 43 inches

“Eastern Indigo,” graphite on paper, 27.5 x 36 inches

“Memento Mori I” (2020), giant garter snake and pipevine swallowtail, graphite on paper, 14 x 14 inches

“Always I” (2020), New Mexican tidge-nosed rattlesnake, graphite on paper, 14 x 14 inches

“Memento Mori II,” San Francisco garter and cabbage white, graphite on paper, 14 x 14 inches

“Are We Ghosts,” graphite on paper, 27.5 x 36 inches

 

 



Art

Bisected Bronze Figures by Artist Anders Krisár Rejoin Through Clasped Hands

June 26, 2020

Vanessa Ruiz

“Untitled” (2014–15), bronze (polished patina), 114 x 48.5 x 63.5 centimeters

Being with oneself takes on a literal meaning in the works of Anders Krisár. The Stockholm-based sculptor and photographer focuses on the human body, creating analog casts from live models using silicone and plaster.

A self-taught artist, Krisár uses his own meticulous techniques and methods for creating a finished piece—constantly reworking the casts to a state of simplicity and smoothness. The impeccably smooth contours and precise cuts that he achieves makes each piece look more digitally rendered than created by hand. Krisár shares on his site, “I’m a perfectionist because I have to be. It’s not really a choice. And it’s not a striving for satisfaction. It’s rather to avoid pain.”

He tells Colossal that the most difficult anatomical features to perfect are the hands and fingernails. And it’s through the palms that the complete figures hold onto the other tightly—each side simultaneously pulling the other closer. Krisár’s cloven figures play with the human brain and its craving for visual symmetry. The two halves create a psychological tension—beautiful yet unsettling in their incomplete wholeness.

Krisár’s next exhibition will open on August 27, 2020, at CFHILL Art Space in Stockholm. Explore more of his work, including his latest endeavors in marble, on Instagram.

 

“Torso 3” (2014), bronze (polished patina), 46 × 104.8 × 14.8 centimeters

“Torso 2” (2014), bronze (polished patina), 45.7 × 56.1 × 15.6 centimeters

“Torso 1” (2013–14), bronze (polished patina), 46.4 × 44.8 × 20 centimeters

“Torso 4” (2016), bronze (polished patina), 46.2 x 51.2 x 22 centimeters

“Untitled” (2011–12), bronze (polished patina), 108 x 39 x 71.5 centimeters

 

 



Art Illustration Photography

Browse Hundreds of Artist’s Zines, Prints, and Other Works at the Virtual Brooklyn Art Book Fair This Weekend

June 25, 2020

Grace Ebert

Kiss” by Sophie Page, four-color risograph print, white paper, 14 x 8.5 inches. All images courtesy of Brooklyn Art Book Fair

The Brooklyn Art Book Fair has moved its 2020 market online, extending the opportunity to pore through the offerings from artists and independent publishers to those who don’t reside in New York City. This year’s fair boasts more than 400 publications presented by 45 vendors, like The Free Black Woman’s Library, Printed Matter, and Paradise Systems. Founded in 2017 to provide smaller presses and artists the opportunity to showcase their work without a financial barrier, this is the fourth iteration of the annual event organized by Endless Editions.

We’ve gathered a few of the offerings here: Khari Johnson-Ricks’s “A real Conversation,” a vibrant screenprint of one of the artist’s incredibly detailed collages; “Friendship Forever,” a humorous collection of comics, by Inkee Wang; and Sarula Bao’s queer romance narrative “Changing Faces.” Browse the available prints, zines, and other artworks on the fair’s site, and pop into the artist chats throughout the weekend.

 

Left: “Changing Faces” by Sarula Bao, 7 x 5 inches, 10 pages. Middle: “A real Conversation” by Khari Johnson-Ricks, five-color screenprint on paper, 22 x 30 inches. Right: “Friendship Forever” by Inkee Wang, 5.6 x 8.25 inches, 24 pages

From the NYC Amidst COVID-19 Fine Art Print Bundle by Felicita Felli Maynard, 5 x 7 inches

The Free Black Women’s Library” poster by Olaronke and John Andrews, 24 x 36 inches

Mushrooms & Friends 2” by Phyllis Ma, 28 x 22 centimeters, 32 pages

Lost Things” by fenta, 5 x 3.5 inches, 44 pages

Abecedarian” by Ashley May, four-color risograph, accordion book, 11 x 9 inches