Art

Diminutive Figures Traverse Vibrant, Post-Climate Disaster Environments by Seonna Hong

January 19, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Kid World” (2021). All images © Seonna Hong, courtesy of Hashimoto Contemporary, shared with permission

In Late Bloomer, Los Angeles-based artist Seonna Hong wades into landscapes filled with amorphous swatches of color and marred by climate disaster. Her acrylic, oil, and pastel works are on view through February 5 at Hashimoto Contemporary in Los Angeles in an introspective solo show that considers her place in an ever-evolving world. Set against abstract, blurred backdrops, Hong’s distinctly rendered animals and anonymous subjects navigate distorted terrains of once-familiar architecture and natural landmarks.

Many of the stylized compositions evoke traditional Korean landscapes from the Joseon period—these are known for their asymmetrical forms, vibrant brushstrokes, and skewed perspectives—that contemplate the human-nature relationship by placing miniature figures among formidable environments. “I’m a second-generation Korean American that is surprised to be making identity-based work but realizing I’ve been making it all along. I’ve spent my entire life between the push and pull of being Korean and American, never feeling quite Korean enough or American enough,” Hong writes on Instagram. “I’ve realized the inherent connection between my work and my history, a belated but cherished revelation.”

 

“Granny Square” (2021)

“In The Joseon Period” (2021)

“The View From the Studio” (2021)

“Sunset Stone” (2021)

“Gumball Dystopia” (2021)

“Like Minded” (2021)

 

 



Craft

Hundreds of Tiny Patchwork Bubbles Form a Colorful Geometric Quilt

January 19, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Tiny Bubbles,” hand and machine pieced, hand and machine quilted, 44 x 44 inches. All images © Marla Varner, shared with permission

What began as an early pandemic project designed to use up scrap fabric has resulted in an ingeniously designed field of color and geometries. “Tiny Bubbles” is a kaleidoscopic work by Marla Varner of Penny Lane Quilts in Sequim, Washington, that’s comprised of hundreds of curved pieces stitched into an abstract, variegated pattern of tiny rounds nestling into larger forms.

In total, the sewn work utilizes 1,320 individual pieces and took more than a year to complete. “Quilted during the pandemic, these tiny bubbles kept me occupied while isolated in my own small bubble. All of the quarter circles were traced from templates, cut with scissors, and pieced by hand. The curved units were then assembled by machine,” she says.

Varner will show “Tiny Bubbles” and the colorfully meandering patchwork titled “Crevices” at QuiltCon 2022 in Phoenix next month. In addition to those pieces, she’s also been working on a temperature quilt and smaller functional goods like potholders, which you can see below. For more on her meticulous process, head to Instagram and her site. (via Kottke)

 

Detail of “Tiny Bubbles,” hand and machine pieced, hand and machine quilted, 44 x 44 inches

“Crevices,” 40 x 45.5 inches

Temperature quilt in progress

“Meander,” 38 x 37 inches

“Tiny Bubbles” in progress

“Tiny Bubbles” in progress

Small quilted potholders

 

 



Art

Inscribed Lace Patterns Defy Expectations in Cal Lane's Plasma-Cut Steel Tools and Industrial Objects

January 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Cal Lane and C24 Gallery, shared with permission

Using car hoods, shovels, and oil drums as her base, Canadian artist Cal Lane cuts generic lace motifs found on the shelves of mass-market retailers. Her quotidian designs adorn tools and commodities typically associated with masculinity, warping both assumptions about gender and the limits of construction and craft. “I am more interested in the dialog between the object and the image, not so much the lace pattern specifically. I didn’t want the work to necessarily be decorative but to be about decoration and the relationship we have with it,” she shares.

A former welder, Lane is broadly interested in the possibilities of materials, and it’s “the industrial, man-made structure, masculine, modernist quality of steel that I am attracted to. I see steel as a metaphor for confrontation, a thing that represents the walls put up by the society I was born into,” she shares. Her body of work, which includes a series of Industrial Doilies, is steeped in contradiction and an ability to defy expectations, which manifest as delicate filigree inscribed in sturdy hunks of metal. “Steel feels like the perfect material to carve into to create the contrasts and conflicts that I myself struggle with,” the artist says.

Many of the plasma-cut sculptures shown here are part of In Her Space, which is on view through March 3 at C24 Gallery in New York. The exhibition includes some of Lane’s more recent pieces, including the collection of shovels and “Astute Class.” A miniature marine vessel, the submarine features a pattern Lane designed that’s comprised of thale cress flowers, a species that “had been bioengineered by Canada and The Netherlands as a bomb-sniffing flower…the flowers grow, but if there is a landmine beneath, the color of the flower changes,” she says. “I thought it was so beautiful, brilliant, and poetic.”

In addition to In Her Space, Lane will show a new series of paintings on queen mattresses this fall at Art Mûr in Montreal. Until then, head to Instagram to see more of her process.

 

“Astute Class” (2021), plasma cut steel, 27 x 138 x 38 inches

“Hood” (2015), plasma cut steel, 37 x 63 x 3.5 inches

“Untitled (Shovel)” (2022), plasma cut steel and wood, 54 x 8 x 5.5 inches

“Untitled (Shovel)” (2016), plasma cut steel and wood, 56 x 8.25 x 5 inches

“Hood” (2015), plasma cut steel, 37 x 63 x 3.5 inches

“Sweet Spill” (2010), plasma cut steel, 22.5 x 69 x 23 inches

“Doily Dumbbells” (2020), plasma cut steel, large dumbbells 14.5 x 48 x 14.5 inches, small dumbbells 10 x 14 x 10 inches

 

 



Colossal

Introducing London Art & Culture, A Weekly Newsletter Curating Events Around the City

January 18, 2022

Colossal

These elephants roam between Piccadilly and Buckingham Palace in London’s Green Park as part of CoExistence

We’re launching London Art & Culture, a new weekly roundup of exhibition openings, artists talks, and other fun events occurring around the city. Similar to our edition focused on Chicago, we’ll share a short list of three to five happenings each Thursday that fall in the realm of art, design, and visual culture. We’ll also include news about our partnerships and words from our friends all over the U.K.  Sign up here.

If you have an event you’d like us to consider or are interested in sponsoring this newsletter, submit your idea to [email protected].

 

 



Illustration

Human Minds Burst into Splashes of Color in Surreal Digital Illustrations by Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor

January 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor, shared with permission

Bogotá-based illustrator Carolina Rodríguez Fuenmayor draws portraits and intimate scenarios brimming with surreal elements and spots of color. In her digital pieces, Rodríguez Fuenmayor tends to obscure subjects’ faces with bright bursts, masses of florals, and whirlpool-like ripples that cloud their minds and explode into their surroundings. The vivid illustrations peek into the workings of the human psyche and the idiosyncratic commotion it produces. “I wouldn’t say that there’s a particular feeling I’m focused on,” she shares. “I infuse all my pieces with a mix of random, confusing, and funny emotions about what I think life is about.”

Pick up a print and explore more of Rodríguez Fuenmayor’s imaginative pieces on Instagram.

 

 

 



Art

Shipping Containers and Intersecting Lines Clutter Landscapes in Mary Iverson's Paintings on Globalization

January 18, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Calamity at Cairo,” acrylic and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches. All images © Mary Iverson, shared with permission

Latticed lines and brightly colored boxes overlay the chaotically transformed landscapes by Mary Iverson (previously). Based in Seattle, the artist uses a combination of oil and acrylic paints, ink, and found photographs to render shockingly prescient scenes blighted by globalization and environmental disaster: barges and shipping containers float in the sea and haphazardly occupy beaches, with their contents sometimes spilling out onto the surrounding area.

The largely natural scenes and the clean, angled lines and geometric forms clash in Iverson’s superimposed works in a manner that evokes the competition of industry. In a note to Colossal, she shares that given the dramatic changes the world has undergone in the last few years, her “paintings are no longer theoretical.” She explains:

Because at the same time as the pandemic was unfolding, the super mega-ships were entering the trade system. Everyone was stuck at home and ordering stuff at an unprecedented pace, the demand for goods got very high, the workforce shrank, and everything got backed up, creating “supply chain issues.” We now have actual real sea-level rise, huge apocalyptic fires, and shipping disasters unfolding before our very eyes. We are at the precipice of an apocalypse. The question is, how are we going to deal with it?

Often rendered on images of historically and culturally significant sites like Machu Picchu, the Colosseum, and the pyramids of Cairo, Iverson’s works indicate the evolution of human society with a bleak, discouraging perspective. “I look at photos of lost civilizations and think about their hopes, dreams, and ideals, and I wonder what the end will look like for us,” she says.

Iverson shares glimpses into her process and works-in-progress on Instagram, and prints of “Calamity at Cairo” are available in the Juxtapoz shop through January 19.

 

“Sunk 2,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Calamity at Crater Lake,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Lost Shipment,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Calamity at Machu Picchu,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Calamity at the Colosseum,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Point Reyes Lighthouse,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches

“Calamity at Summit Lake (Mount Rainier),” oil on canvas, 16 x 20 inches

“Rube Beach with Containers,” oil on canvas

“Fleet,” acrylic, ink, and found photograph on panel, 12 x 12 inches