multiples

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Art Design

100,000 Hand-Arranged Stamps Form Complex Mosaics by Elisabetta Di Maggio

October 21, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

In “Greetings from Venice, Italian artist Elisabetta Di Maggio used thousands of stamps to create colorful mosaics on the floor of the Fondaco dei Tedeschi. Di Maggio created repeating geometric patterns with the varied designs, shapes, and color palettes of each miniature government-commissioned artwork. The paper mosaics were placed below a transparent floating floor, allowing visitors to walk over the artwork, located on the fourth floor of the historic building, which has been repurposed as a contemporary shopping destination.

To create the elaborate repeated patterns, Di Maggio studied St. Mark’s Basilica’s floor and Venetian palazzi and sorted 100,000 stamps by color to prepare the designs. The artist then worked with a team of high school students to arrange the stamps in complex patterns. “Greetings from Venice” was on view in autumn 2018.

Take a behind-the-scenes look at the process for “Greetings from Venice” on Irenebrination’s blog and explore more of Di Maggio’s other projects on her website.

Research and process documents via Irenebrination

 

 

 



Art Craft History

Discarded Ceramic Shards Are Celebrated in Multi-Part Assemblages by Conservator and Artist Bouke de Vries

October 18, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Bouke de Vries works with ceramic assemblage to reinterpret historical pottery in multi-part sculptures. The Dutch artist studied at the prestigious Central St. Martin’s in London and worked in high fashion before pivoting to ceramics conservation and restoration in the early 1990’s, which he learned at West Dean College. Confronting the moral dilemmas around valuation of imperfect artifacts in his vocational practice, de Vries challenges the value of imperfection, damage, and cultural history in his exploded artworks.

Broken blue willow plates amalgamate into a map of China, a shattered turquoise vase finds a new function as the contents of a clear glass vessel, and small shards of porcelain become the thorns on a blossoming rose. In a statement on his website, the artist explains:

Instead of hiding the evidence of this most dramatic episode in the life of a ceramic object, he emphasizes their new status, instilling new virtues, new values, and moving their stories forward… Where even an almost invisible hairline crack, a tiny rim chip or a broken finger render a once-valuable object practically worthless, literally not worth the cost of restoring. There’s something incongruous about the fact that such an object, although still imbued with all the skills it took to make it – be it first-period Worcester, Kang-xi or Sevres – can so easily be consigned to the dustbin of history.

De Vries’s work has clearly struck a chord with viewers: he exhibits widely and in 2019 alone has shown work at Hillwood House in Washington, Mesher Gallery in Instanbul, The Museum of Fine Art in Montgomery, Alabama, the Kuntsi Museum in Vaasa, Finland, the Museum of Royal Worcester, and at the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale in Yingge, Taiwan. The artist is represented by galleries in The Netherlands, U.S., and U.K. Explore more of de Vries’s work and stay up-to-date on his latest exhibitions via Instagram. (via The Jealous Curator)

 

 



Art

15,000 Black Paper Butterflies Swarm the Fondazione Adolfo Pini for Carlos Amorales’s Latest Installation of ‘Black Cloud’

April 17, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Photographs: Andrea Rossetti

Hordes of black butterflies of various sizes and species cover the grand staircase, mirrors, walls, and doors of the Milan-based Fondazione Adolfo Pini. The dark and vast swarm is a part of the more than 10-year series Black Cloud by Mexican artist Carlos Amorales (previously) as a part of his solo exhibition THE ACCURSED HOUR. The butterflies surround an installation of paper cut-outs from his series Life in the folds, a project of gray-toned human and tree silhouettes which address the nature of human violence against other humans. The exhibition opened April 2 and continues through July 8, 2019. You can see more of Amorales’s projects on his website and Instagram. (via designboom)

 

 



Art

Sculptural “Agreggations” by Kwang Young Chun Comprised of Thousands of Individually Wrapped Paper Parcels

April 4, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

South Korean artist Kwang Young Chun wraps tiny geometric packages in paper and combines them into massive wall-mounted and freestanding assemblages. Each composition is composed of thousands of individual mulberry paper parcels, carefully toned with tea and pigment and including the abstracted characters that allude to the paper’s origins as old documents. The works, which Chun refers to as ‘agreggations’, feature gradations in color and smooth craters within their highly textured surfaces.

Chun drew inspiration for his signature style from his illness-ridden childhood in Korea and the way that medicine was commonly packaged in triangular paper parcels of mulberry paper, or hanji. The artist was raised in Korea, lived in the United States in the 1960s while completed his M.F.A. at Philadelphia College of Art, and returned to his native country in adulthood.

In an artist statement on his website, Chun describes the disorientation he felt while a graduate student in America, tension and discord between the ways of his upbringing and the cultural modes of the U.S. This experience heightened his drive to express himself as a Korean artist, and in 1995 Chun landed on his current mode of making.

Six of the artist’s agreggations are on view in a solo exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum, through July 28, 2019. You can see more of his body of work on his website.

 

 



Art

Colorful Strands of Thread and Beads Highlight the Contours of Human Skulls

February 14, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Jim F. Faure, who goes by Jim Skull, introduces his decades-long practice with his pseudonym. The Paris-based sculptor focuses exclusively on human skulls. Using innumerable strands of colorful thread, Murano glass beads, rope, and even porcupine quills, Faure creates an entirely new “skin” for the skeletal forms. Each skull’s covering also trails off into dramatic cascades that shape-shift depending on how the skull is displayed.

Faure transforms the surface of an object that often strikes fear into a visually enticing decorative object, inviting the viewer to study the divots and contours of our shared anatomical structure. In an artist statement, the sculptor cites his upbringing in New Caledonia in the South Pacific, followed by wide-ranging international travels in New Zealand, India, and Hong Kong as informing his fascination with the ritual and cultural aspects of the human experience. You can see more of Faure’s work on his website.

 

 



Art Illustration

Flower Petals and Stems Transform into Animals and Insects in Inventive New Arrangements by Raku Inoue

January 23, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Raku Inoue (previously) goes all-white in his latest flower petal compositions. The Montreal-based creative uses flower petals, stems, and leaves to form creatures ranging from owls and tigers to beetles and butterflies in his ongoing Natura series. Inoue takes advantage of the natural curvatures and shapes of his source materials to create lively interpretations of animals. In Inoue’s owl, densely-petaled mums form the bird’s fluffy belly, while the angular outlines of alstroemeria create the exoskeleton and horns of a beetle. By using largely intact plants, the artist heightens the aliveness of his creations, bridging both flora and fauna. You can see more of his work on Instagram and Behance.

 

 



Art

Vintage Glass Forged into Enchanted Leafy Worlds by Amber Cowan

January 10, 2019

Anna Marks

Bridesmaid's Forest

Bridesmaid’s Forest

In the latest collection by Amber Cowan (previously), colorful vintage glass is sculpted into three fairytale stories: Bridesmaid’s Forest, Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose, and Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph. Cowan transforms discarded glass from the 1900s into sculptural “paintings” that burst with natural forms, and her latest collection of monochrome scenes effortlessly tempts viewers into their enchanted worlds.

Cowan first curates the color of each piece, collecting specific figurines and animals from vintage glass works. She then melts the rest of the glass through a methodical flameworking process to create the scenery that will surround the found figurines. Leaves, flowers, feathers, and tiny glistening pearls are carefully crafted to fill each dense, botanical world.

Bridesmaid’s Forest

The female figurine central to her mint-green Bridesmaid’s Forest  was originally part of a glass ornament called The Bridesmaid, which was pressed from the Ohio-based Fenton Art Glass Factory. Cowan built a fantastical world around the bridesmaid, sculpting a colorful leaf-filled forest which features a whale, snail, and duck nestled within the fragile glass shrubbery. “My story with this piece is that the bridesmaid got bored of the wedding and wandered off to make her own fun,” Cowan explains to Colossal. “It is kind of a fantasy landscape.”

Bridesmaid’s Forest

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose is a spiritual adventure where the natural elements featured in the piece were chosen for their symbolism and how they relate to the bridesmaid’s story. “The figurine is standing in front of a pyramidal line pointed towards the sun; next to her is her feline companion and across from her is the totem animal of the giraffe symbolizing the ability to see into the future and obtain things that are normally out of reach,” she explains. At the base of the sculpture are two swans which fill the narrative with themes of intuition, self-actualization, and love. 

Cowan’s chocolate-colored Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph, is exhibited in the permanent collection of The Toledo Museum of Art and was inspired by Jan Brueghel the Elder’s painting A Fantastic Cave with Odysseus and Calypso in addition to the16th century Grotto Grande in the Boboli Gardens in Florence. “Chocolate Nymph” refers to “chocolate glass,” a popular glass color in the early 1900s that is no longer produced.

Cowan is currently constructing new work for a solo show opening at Heller Gallery in New York on May 3, 2019. To view more of her work, visit her website and her Instagram.

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Bridesmaid’s Search for the Desert Rose

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph

Grotto of the Chocolate Nymph