Art Photography

Gold Ornaments and Precious Stones Adorn Tender Photographic Portraits by Tawny Chatmon

November 4, 2021

Grace Ebert

“Joy” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 30 x 20 inches. All images © Tawny Chatmon, shared with permission

In If I’m No Longer Here, I Wanted You to Know, photographic artist Tawny Chatmon overlays portraits of young children and families with dabs of 24-karat gold leaf, precious stones, and watercolor details. The heavily adorned images are the latest in Chatmon’s superimposed works, which veered from digital collages to the hand-gilded pieces evocative of Gustav Klimt’s Golden Phase that are similar to those shown here, and respond to themes of unity and togetherness born out of the ongoing pandemic.

While many of Chatmon’s works previously centered on a single subject, she’s transitioned to also photographing two children at play or entire families, including fathers where she otherwise had not. She explains:

My father played such a paramount role in my, my sisters’, and my mother’s lives. It did not sit well with me that I wasn’t celebrating that in my work, too. It has been 10 years since we lost our father to prostate cancer, yet still, his lessons and love carry us through our days. I thought of my husband too, my brother-in-law, my friend’s fathers and husbands, and all of the world’s compassionate fathers and how important they are, and I especially wanted to celebrate Black fathers who are often depicted as anything other than what they truly are… phenomenal.

Through gilt embellishments, Chatmon emphasizes the beauty and value inherent in her subjects, whose joyful, tender expressions and gestures exude warmth and affection. “The past year’s pandemic revealed to me once more that time with our loved ones is not infinite… While the revelations of injustice leading to civil unrest reminded me of the urgency to continue to work towards a better future for our children,” she says. “I do not wish to wait for the perfect time, the perfect place, or the perfect day to express my love for family and friends.”

Currently based in Maryland, Chatmon will show some of her portraits with Galerie Myrtis at the 2022 Venice Biennial. She’s working on a new series titled Remnants, which explores themes of futurity and harmony through mosaic-style pieces comprised of snippets of the artist’s previous paintings. You can follow her progress on Instagram.

 

“Created in Her Image” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 40 x 30 inches

“Destined To Lead The Way” (2021), 24k gold leaf, acrylic, precious and semi-precious stones, on archival pigment print 34 x 22 inches

“He’s Got The Whole World In His Hands” (2021), 24k gold leaf, 12k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 46 x 28 inches

“Best” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 40 x 30 inches

“Look Forward, Beloved Boy” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 36 x 24 inches

“It Was Never Your Burden To Carry” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic, watercolor on archival pigment print, 52 x 36 inches

“Sweet Heart” (2016/2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic, precious stones on archival pigment print, 20 x 16 inches

“Ahead” (2020), 24k gold leaf, acrylic on archival pigment print, 28 x 21 inches

 

 



Art Craft

Knotted Systems of Red Thread Dangle from Fabric Books and Letters by Rima Day

November 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Rima Day, shared with permission

Bound with loose threads and inscribed with sinuous lines that crawl across the page, the textile works created by Tennessee-based artist Rima Day evoke the Japanese good luck charms called sennibari. Translating to “thousand person stitches,” the Japanese amulet was developed during war times when women would ask friends, family, and even strangers to make a knot on a piece of fabric, which was then gifted to a soldier for protection. Some of the collectively made works depicted “animals such as a tiger, meaningful kanji, a picture of the Japanese imperial flag, or just geometrical patterns,” the artist tells Colossal, and often were stitched into vests or sashes so they could be worn.

In Day’s iterations, the loose threads hang from letters and books with translucent pages, two objects emblematic of communication and knowledge sharing, with winding systems puncturing their surfaces. “Red thread symbolizes human connection in Japan,” she says. “My fascination with the similarity between nature and the human body manifested in matrixes that resemble blood vessels, root systems, and tree vines.”

Day’s work is currently on view as part of a group craft exhibition at Tennessee State Museum. She shares a variety of her fiber-based pieces on Instagram and sells stitched cyanotype prints and other sculptural objects on Etsy. You also might enjoy the sprawling words of Janaina Mello Landini. (via Lustik)

 

 

 



Science

Life and Death Meet in a Striking Macro Timelapse of Carnivorous Plants and Their Prey

November 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

The Green Reapers” is the latest timelapse from French video artist Thomas Blanchard that captures the cutthroat relationship between insects and carnivorous plants in microscopic detail. Shot in 8K during the course of four months, the experimental project splices short clips of moths cracking through their chrysalises and Venus flytraps seizing slugs and worms, juxtaposing rebirth and death within seconds. Blanchard is known for unveiling the otherwise unseen transformations of the natural world—see his previous video works on flowers, seasons, and swirling liquids—and you can find more of his stunning compilations on Vimeo and Instagram.

 

 

 



Craft Design

An Adorably Eccentric Cast of Googly-Eyed Characters Exude Joy and Whimsy

November 3, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Lidiya Marinchuk

The quirky troupe of characters crafted by Kyiv-based doll designer Lidiya Marinchuk sport a wide range of emotions from surprised three-eyed monsters and gloomy rain clouds to sly foxes in polka-dotted socks. Sometimes leaving them as soft, plush creatures and others painting their bodies to create sculptural forms, Marinchuk instills each with a dose of whimsy and play. You can find more of the wildly emotional cast on Behance, and shop available pieces on Etsy.

 

 

 



Art

Hundreds of Hand-Sculpted Flowers and Leaves Envelop Porcelain Vessels by Artist Hitomi Hosono

November 2, 2021

Grace Ebert

“A Tall Tsutsuji Tower” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 34 x 27 centimeters. All images courtesy of Adrian Sassoon, shared with permission

Japanese artist Hitomi Hosono (previously) translates the billowing leaves of an underwater plant or the clusters of Hawthorn tree flowers into intricate sculptural assemblages devoid of their natural colors. The monochromatic bowls and vases appear to sprout incredibly detailed botanicals that Hosono layers in tight wraps and dense bunches, and while stylized in presentation, each form is derived from hours of research and observation of real specimens.

Currently living in London, Hosono draws on memories of her home in Gifa Prefecture to inform much of her work, and she allows the medium itself to dictate her practice. While some of the botanical forms are inspired by specific encounters with the environment like walks through the city’s parks, others are spontaneous and spurred by a hunk of material already evocative of a leaf or petal. “When handling the porcelain clay itself, then my old memories of nature in Japan come flooding back through my hands—abstract and uncertain when it was in my mind. Kneading, brushing, patting, carving, there are many processes before the shape emerges from the porcelain clay and begins to take the form of my tactile memory,” she explains.

In a note to Colossal, Hosono says she’s been interested lately in combining small florals with larger foliage, a contrast evident in “A Tall Peony and Leaves Vase” and “A Tall Tsutsuji Tower.” She describes the process for the latter:

This flower is so much a part of my childhood memories; we had Tutsuji in our home garden, at school, along the street, nearby parks, almost everywhere in Japan. Making the delicate tip of the Tsutsuji petal is challenging. I use a very small fine brush to curl the end of each petal. This must be done slowly and gently as the ends become incredibly fragile. Then I assemble the petals by hand to make each flower and place these one-by-one.

No matter the size, every element is hand-sculpted and arranged with similar pieces into a floret or layered onto the larger vessel, which typically takes a year or more to complete.

Hosono is currently represented by Adrian Sassoon, where you can explore more of her most recent works, and follow her on Instagram to stay up-to-date with her practice.

 

Detail of “A Tall Tsutsuji Tower” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 34 x 27 centimeters

“A Very Large Hawthorn Leaves Bowl” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 34 x 39 centimeters

“A Hawthorn Tower” (2020), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 24.5 x 22 centimeters

Detail of “A Tall Peony and Leaves Vase” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 31.5 x 21 centimeters

“A Tall Peony and Leaves Vase” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain , 31.5 x 21 centimeters

Detail of “A Tall Tsutsuji Tower” (2021), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 34 x 27 centimeters

 

“A Hawthorn Tower” (2020), molded, carved, and hand-built porcelain, 24.5 x 22 centimeters

 

 



Art Craft

Innumerable Cuts Transform Single Sheets of Paper into Exquisite Flora and Fauna

November 2, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Pippa Dyrlaga, shared with permission

Cutting ornate lace patterns, spindly roots, and scaly chameleon skin with meticulous detail, Yorkshire-based artist Pippa Dyrlaga (previously) continues to turn single sheets of paper into elaborate works. Her process involves drawing a design that typically features a floral motif before slicing each component by hand with a scalpel. Once the excess paper is removed, the resulting works unveil intricate patches of wildflowers and painstakingly sliced fur and fins.

Dyrlaga’s works will be included in an exhibition in Paris next month, and she’s in the midst of a collaborative project with origami artist Ankon Mitra. To add one of her exquisitely cut pieces to your collection, check out her shop, and dive into her process on Instagram.