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Art

Ruled by Children, Kevin Peterson’s Paintings Find Hope Among Environmental Collapse

September 7, 2022

Grace Ebert

“Steady” (2022), oil on cradled wood panel, 36 × 24 inches. All images © Kevin Peterson, shared with permission

Houston-based artist Kevin Peterson (previously) continues to translate the uncertainty of today’s world into dystopian works with equal amounts despair and optimism. Scenes brimming with waste material and urban decay find boundless confidence and life in children, who unflinchingly nuzzle up to polar bears or balance atop a crumbling brick wall. Offering hope in the face of climate catastrophe and economic collapse, Peterson’s oil paintings are deeply personal, sometimes reflecting his own son and daughter as subjects. The artists tells Colossal:

I hope the coming generations are wiser, more empathetic, more courageous.  When I’m watching my kids, I’m always projecting my own insecurities and fears onto them, assuming they will suffer from my own deficiencies. I can not tell you how excited I feel when I see them diverge from those characteristics, and I realize they are not me. They are better than me in so many ways, and that is what anchors my hope for them and the future.

Many of Peterson’s works shown here are on view through September 24 at Thinkspace Projects in Los Angeles, which also has a couple of prints available. You can also follow his forward-looking practice on Instagram.

 

“Cove” (2022), oil on cradled wood panel, 24 × 18 inches

“Stay,” oil on panel, 28 x 28 inches

“Fellowship” (2022), oil on cradled wood panel, 32 × 24 inches

“Company” (2022), oil on cradled wood panel, 32 × 24 inches

“Fall” (2022), oil on cradled wood panel, 20 × 16 inches

 

 



Art Design Illustration

Flora, Fowl, and Fruit Pop with Color in Diana Beltrán Herrera’s Ornate Paper Sculptures

September 7, 2022

Kate Mothes

All images © Diana Beltrán Herrera, shared with permission

A menagerie of beady-eyed birds and butterflies complement vibrant florals and fruity morsels in Bristol-based artist Diana Beltrán Herrera’s elaborate paper sculptures (previously). By utilizing subtle gradients to shape flower petals and making tiny cuts to detail individual feathers, the artist adds incredible dimension and density using the ubiquitous, 2-dimensional material. Ranging from shop window displays, to individual sculptures, to interior installations, she is often commissioned to make work featuring flowers or creatures specific to a location or region, and in a meticulous process of planning and sorting, she assembles different colors and sizes of paper into spritely flora and fauna.

Herrera has an exhibition planned for spring of next year at Children’s Museum Singapore, and you can find more of her work on Behance and Instagram.

 

 

 



Illustration

Colorful Digital Illustrations by Calvin Sprague Balance Order and Chaos

September 6, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Calvin Sprague, shared with permission

A patchwork of geometric shapes and clean, black lines comprise the bold, dynamic illustrations of Rotterdam-based artist Calvin Sprague (previously). Digitally rendered in retro color palettes, animals, foliage, and facial features layer into compositions dense with abstract details. Monochromatic backdrops tend to frame a central figure or scenario, which sometimes camouflage additional figures and elements within their structural forms.

Prints, t-shirts, and other goods featuring Sprague’s works are available in his shop, and you can dive into an archive of his illustrations on Behance and Instagram.

 

 

 



Photography

More Than 100 Photographers Are Raising Funds to Protect 30 Million Hectares of African Parks

September 6, 2022

Grace Ebert

Scott Ramsay, Mbeli Bai, Nouabale-Ndoki National Park, Republic of Congo, western lowland gorilla. All images courtesy of Prints for Wildlife, shared with permission

African Parks, a nonprofit focused on conservation and protecting endangered species, is behind several efforts to address the loss of biodiversity across the continent, and its latest initiative is to preserve 30 million hectares of parkland by 2030. Prints for Wildlife is supporting the effort through its annual fundraiser, which sells limited-edition works from more than 100 photographers around the globe. This year’s collection includes a diverse array of animals and environments, including multiple vulnerable or engaged species like the western lowland gorilla and polar bear.

Now in its third year, Prints for Wildlife has raised $1.75 million since it launched in 2020, and 100 percent of proceeds benefit African Parks. Shop the sale through September 25. (via Feature Shoot)

 

Pie Aerts, Naboisho Conservancy, Kenya, Masai giraffe

Marsel van Oosten, Lower Zambezi National Park, Zambia, African elephant

Marco Gaiotti, Spitsbergen, Norway, polar bear

James Lewin, Amboseli National Park, Kenya, Masai giraffe

Gurcharan Roopra, Lake Magadi, Kenya, flamingos

Chris Schmid, Serengeti, Tanzania, cheetah

Beverly Joubert, Makgadikgadi Salt Pans, Botswana, plains zebra

 

 



Illustration

Dense Dotwork Adds Grainy Texture to Velco’s Lighthearted Monochromatic Tattoos

September 1, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Velco, shared with permission

Pereira, Colombia-born artist Velco stipples black-and-white tattoos that are patchwork compositions of dots. A densely inked patch might form a snoozing koala’s ear or human silhouette, while a fading gradient composes the steam emanating from a moka pot. Lighthearted and often evoking the surreal, the works are derived from conversations with clients and the artist’s interactions with the world. “The window frames that I’ve been designing and tattooing have been exactly that, a portal to another reality. And it’s beautiful to know that there are now multiple portals wandering around the world providing us with glances to other universes,” he shares.

After beginning his tattoo practice by working primarily with fine lines, Velco has shifted to the dotted style that now dominates his work. “The effect gave me the feel of the beautiful vintage, grainy texture in images captured with a film camera, and since then, I’ve been working on designs where I can integrate this effect,” he shares. “To create the graininess that we see on the tattoos, I swing/whip the machine at a slightly fast pace, yet very delicately, on the skin while using a fine line needle and lowering the voltage of the machine, causing the needle to come out at a slower rate.”

Velco works out of the Velours studio space in Montréal, which also has one of his prints in stock. Follow him on Instagram for his latest works and information on available bookings.

 

 

 



Art

The Aquatic and Terrestrial Life of Southern California Merges into Hybrid Creatures in Jon Ching’s Paintings

August 22, 2022

Grace Ebert

“King Tide.” All images © Jon Ching, courtesy of Beinart Gallery, shared with permission

Los Angeles-based artist Jon Ching imagines the fantastic possibilities of melding Earth’s flora and fauna, rendering bizarre creatures with mushroom feathers and striped tulip fins. His latest oil paintings, which are on view this fall in Habitat at Beinart Gallery, extend this interest in hybridity by blending aquatic, aerial, and terrestrial organisms and their environments.

Marine ecosystems appear in many of the pieces, alongside cacti and succulents native to Ching’s home in southern California. In “King Tide,” for example, rising water approaches a cockatoo with plant-like plumage, and “Acclimate” depicts two green parrots perched on aloe growing below the surface. Each work envisions how different ecologies could converge and references nature’s resilience, the climate crisis, and the growing necessity of adapting to a changing world.

Ching’s solo show Habitat runs from September 11 to October 2 in Melbourne. Prints and stickers are available in his shop, and you can follow his latest works on Instagram.

 

“Acclimate”

“Reparation”

Left: “Hygge.” Right: “Think Tank”

“Double Vision”

“Flash Point”

Left: “Jungle Gym.” Right: “Neogenesis”

“Long Game”

 

 

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