John Broadley’s illustrations are old school weird. They have a traditional feel about them, the style reminiscent of times gone by – they’re like old fashioned prints that would once have graced many a magazine and catalogue. However, when you look a little closer everything goes strange, you enter the weird world of his imagination.
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Jon Burgerman‘s an artist, illustrator, designer and whatever you’re havin’ yourself. In short he’s prolific and his work has graced everything from walls to snowboards, galleries to baseball hats. His style clearly comes out of the graphic arts traditions of Japan – brightly coloured, bold lines, manical forms out of which monsters appear – his influences somewhere in the arts universe of Phil Frost, Mr. Jago of the Scrawl Collective and Jean-Michel Basquiat.
On his website he has this to say of himself:
Jon Burgerman is a multidisciplinarian carefully constructing a world in which the narrative of being an artist is played out across a wide variety of media for the distraction, enlightenment and delight of those who choose to tune in.
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Jake Wood-Evans is a British painter based in Brigton whose influences lie somewhere between the baroque and the 19th century colourists – his love of the Baroque and more contemporary British painters such as Bacon has led him to a space in which he’s constantly mixing the worlds of classical and contemporary art. What strikes me immediately when I look at his work is his use of classical imagery and his colour palette; he tends to stick to one range of colours for each picture; blue, red, grey and so on and the image is often very simple, a sculpture, a bird, a child. This structure, process and sheer technical ability results in dark, ethereal works that capture an emotion, trigger the imagination.
No, his work isn’t breaking boundaries, no it’s not a new form. What it is is well crafted work that has a clear aesthetic and that is something to be cherished, admired and appreciated.
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Niark1, otherwise known as Sebastien Feraut, is a well known French Graphic designer, illustrator, painter who seems to be in love with wolves – I have absolutely no idea why – they haunt all his paintings and illustrations. His illustrations and paintings have the same concerns, use the same motifs, but while his illustration work is very clean his paintings seem wilder, freer, the brush allowing him to express himself more.
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Kut, a Latvian arts collective made up of filmmakers, musicians, artists, politicians and cats, recently did a guerilla action called ‘Oh Joy!’ on the streets of Riga. They brought nature into the city. Turned a day into a celebration of summer. Here’s what they said about it:
We brought the country to the city. To revive the grey concrete, to break the routine and give you a moment to reflect on what we are and where we are going. Sometimes surprises just happen and we have no influence over them but we do have influence over our perception. How ready are you to accept whatever life throws at you with a smile?
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The Medicine Sessions is a music and spoken word night run in Lismore, County Waterford, Ireland, once a month by one of our skills exchange members. It’s a wonderful addition to the culture of the South East and many people have passed its doors since it opened earlier this year. Like she does every month, Vicky, the producer of this fantastic night, has sent us an update on how it went. So here you go.
Summer arrived. Just for one day, coinciding with an Olympian clash of gold from a woman Celt, with the whole nation watching. Afterwards, in the calm, inebriation of the sun, people meandered round the streets, or laid themselves out like corpses in their gardens, their faces cast to the unfamiliar burning orb in the sky. With the sun and historical victory, came laziness, aided by beer and white wine.
As I opened up the Medicine room for the night, I noted the atmosphere and mildly panicked that this might be the first month of failure when it came to garnering a crowd. But, although slow to gain momentum, by ten o’clock, the room filled and I felt the tension lift from me as I hit the stairs down to the bar to retrieve more chairs.
Polly Barrett fitted the sunny end of the day perfectly, her delightful, cheery personality casting its own light over the darkening Medicine room. Her natural honey voice, tripped over the heads and hearts of the audience as she sang of quiet love affairs, dreaming and the fleeting friendships formed whilst busking. Polly has a beautiful stage presence, confident and genuine and she is full of good natured wit, a fact that glimmers through her lyrics along with a sharp enthusiasm for life. She is the sort of performer who seems to be exactly the same on stage, as off. Everything is there to see and hear and the bare boned picking and strumming on her lovely Martin guitar, complimented her performance completely.
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Chie Aoki’s sculptures are strange – are they hybrids or humans going through some metamorphosis? Are we looking at a moment of change or a well crafted object – figures that play with the synthetic/organic boundary? I’m not sure and don’t think I’ll ever find out as tracking down any information on the artist or her work is very difficult. There is barely a whisper of her online which in this day and age is very strange – stranger than her work. Having said that I do know that shes a craft graduate from the Kanazawa College of Art in Japan and is about 30 years old.
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Andrea D’Aquino‘s illustrations and collage work is some of the best you’ll see anywhere. Its vibrant, bright, bold and makes me smile. She’s obviously well versed in her craft having worked for years as an art director for a number of advertising agencies in New York. It was only after she decided to go freelance, to take the plunge, that her own work took on a whole new level and reignited her childhood love of drawing, painting, collage and illustration. She describes herself as:
While there is a very personal stamp to my work, I do not consider myself “a brand”® (no, thank you) but an actual person with complexity and contradictions. I reserve the right to be unpredictable, and to work in a wide variety of media
And so say all of us.
Via Escape Into Life
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Elizabeth Graeber‘s ‘Food On Paper’ illustrations are wonderful. Simply wonderful. Their vibrant colours remind me of Judith Kerr’s illustrations in ’The Tiger that Came to Tea’ while her quirky drawing style has shades of Quentin Blake – in it’s immediacy and boldness. Yes, her work belongs in such illustrious company. What’s most gratifying about the series is that she plainly states her love for food, a desire that comes out in her drawings.
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Fernando Vincente‘s ‘Atlas’ series of map paintings are neatly done – with an illustrators eye, a designers intuitiveness for image creating. After trawling through the shops, flea markets and antique fairs in and around Madrid for maps, atlases and cartographic canvases Vincente set about bring animals, humans and objects to life out of the contours of the continents, seas and land masses of the planet. Here’s what he said about his process:
When I paint I like to do on printed materials, is a way to unite my passion for topics such as anatomy, mechanics and my hobby for collecting posters, maps, atlas geographic and geographical anatomy with my work.
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Dwora Fried‘s Boxes series provide a glimpse into a colourful narrative, a nonsensical universe that is confined, constricted by the three walls of her assemblages – a moment in time captured through a window of her making. Although she’s been based in America for over 30 yeaars she’s Austrian and her sense of isolation, of place, has played a large part in her work. Here’s what she has to say about it:
I have always felt like an outsider, growing up as a Jew in Austria, being a woman and a lesbian, and my art allows me to reflect that perspective. I collect moments and glimpses of forms, colors, and objects wherever I go, photographing things that are pieces of a puzzle to be put together later in an art piece. The subjects may vary from piece to piece, but there will always be this feeling of displacement, alienation, and entrapment.
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Aaron Dunn‘s ‘Heads’ is a series of portraits carved out of dried poured paint – it sort of looks like play dough gone wrong. The artist himself has this to say:
Heads is a series of carved paint pour(traits). It’s my likening of artists to Doctor Frankensteins, and a contemplation of what we might owe our work if it lived and breathed. Heads began as a parody of macho chest-thumpers like Pollock and Koons, but grew into a joyful exploration/recontextualization of the possibilities of ‘traditional’ painting media: this includes the physical incorporation of paintbrush bristles/handles and other hardware into the work, as well as poured, dissected and dripping paint in all kinds of messy 3D applications.
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As you can see from his paintings Australian artist Leif Podhajsky draws on the psychedelic, connectedness and our relationship with nature in an attempt to coerce the viewer into a realignment with themselves and their surroundings. He’s a designer by profession and as music plays a large part in his art it’s not surprising to learn that he’s created artwork for a number of bands and record labels such as; Warp Records, Modular Records, Sub Pop Records, Sony Music, GRIMES, Shabazz Palaces, Lykke Li and Tame Impala.
Podhajsky says about his work:
I create work that explores themes of connectedness, the relevance of nature and the psychedelic or altered experience and by utilizing these subjects I am attempting to coerce the viewer into a realignment with themselves and their surroundings. In a lot of my work I am pursuing a symbiosis between digital techniques and organic feeling outcomes. My artwork is really an exploration of creativity and imagination with the intent in finding answers to my own life and the things I sense and feel but can’t explain in words.
I’m reading Thomas Pynchon’s novel ‘Inherent Vice’ at the moment - it’s a part noir, part psychedelic romp – and Podhajsky’s work seems most appropriate.
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Kike Besada‘s found art is exactly that, found. His work looks for, seeks the beautiful in the everyday, the discarded, the unwanted. Unlike many mixed media collage artists Besada keeps the form of what he has found; he then deconstructs it whether it be a document, scrap paper, old photograph and creates a new aesthetic out of it. A still recognisable document simply sheds it skin and begins a new life.
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Razvan Boar’s paintings are wonderful works of art that range between semi abstraction and near photorealism, his images appropriated, from newspapers and magazines perhaps, who knows? What makes them especially appealing to me is his use of muted colours, his palette of black and white with the odd use of judicious colour. With it Boar is somehow able to create an unsettling and unstable mood in his work that draws you in, wants you to know more about his subjects who seem deeply involved in some activity, a sport or something troubling, intangible.
Boar, despite his mature paintings is still young – he’s only 30 – and is seen as one of the most promising talents emerging from a new generation of painters in Romania. It has been said about Boar and his work:
Superlative painting skills – borne of the same communist era emphasis on traditional techniques that propelled Germany’s Leipzig School to fame – are the hallmark of several recently acclaimed Romanian painters. Razvan Boar seems set to become another. Aside from the obvious virtuosity of his work, Boar’s practice is distinguished by various distancing devices, most of them typical of recent Romanian painting, and each seeking to disrupt the anticipation of narrative raised by keenly observed figuration.
258 total views, 1 today
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