I happened upon this video for the band “Odonis Odonis” which takes Hieronymus Bosch’s masterpiece “The Garden of Earthly Delights” and brings it to life via animation. I can’t find specific information on who did the animation, but the video was directed by Lee Stringle for Odonis Odonis, an industrial punk combo out of Toronto.
It’s pretty cool to see a painting that previously only existed in a static, two dimensional format suddenly come to life via this animation:
I’m still sorting through pictures from going to a number of the art fairs two weeks ago, and noticed two artists making work with the theme of cats. The first, which you can see below, is a piece featuring three white cats on a pedestal by Alix Pearlstein. The title of this piece is “Cat Object-1 (adrift), Three white supremacist cats set adrift on a new iceberg in a warming ocean … a fragment from Larsen C …somewhere near Antarctica,” 2017. It’s not just a long title, it’s political commentary. But I’m not sure I understand the use of cats to make this political statement … it’s like an internet cat meme come to life as a sculpture.
The next artist working with cat imagery is Ryosuke Kumakura, whose t-shirt paintings we saw the other day. I would guess that the placement of these paintings on top of the piles of stacked papers and canvas stretchers is part of the work, but the meaning is not clear, just like the meaning of the t-shirts were not clear. But there’s something about the little black cat painting that I like, the sentimental style of this cute little kitten with a focus on its eyes and white patch of fur on its chest brings to mind something like a feline-only Margaret Keane painting.
I saw a series of paintings on cut-out wood shapes by Radamés “Juni” Figueroa at the NADA Art Fair a couple weeks ago, and there’s something about their bold simplicity that still appeals to me. As you can see from the first picture below, he has a range of subjects, from a New York baseball hat, prescription drug bottle, a cigaratte, a guitar, and a Pittsburgh Pirates jersey. Scroll down for more …
I especially liked the Pirates jersey, and the way the spot light created a dark halo around it. The “halo” effect gives the effect of a somber tribute, which seems appropriate since this represents the jersey of Roberto Clemente, who died in a plane crash while en route to deliver aid to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. I don’t know if the lighting was done this way on purpose, but it works for me. As I looked for pictures of Clemente, I noticed that most of them showed him wearing a sleeveless version of the jersey, which I think was more-common in the late 1960s before the short-sleeved jerseys became common in the 1970s (baseball fans, feel free to correct me here if I’m wrong).
I saw some paintings by Alan Prazniak at the NADA Art Fair, and there was something about this one in particular that felt like a darker, people-less Gauguin … I think a big part of the Gauguin feeling is that the texture of the canvas (or is it burlap, as Gauguin sometimes used?) comes through the paint, so the painting has a strong tactile presence.
Since I’m making the comparison to Paul Gauguin, I should show you a few Gauguin landscapes, so you can make your own judgement. Below left is “Tahitian Landscape,” 1891, and below right is “Landscape from Tahiti (Apatarao),” 1893.
I can’t find the title for Prazniak’s painting, but you can see more of his work here. As you will see at that link, not all of his paintings are dark, and not all of them look or feel like Gauguin … it was primarily my reaction to this one painting above … but I do like the work and would like to learn more about this artist. I find it a little surprising, though, that the artist’s website doesn’t give any information about the artist – no bio, no explanation of the work, no mention of gallery representation … but it is a beautiful collection of paintings.
I saw this pair of folded t-shirts at the NADA Art Fair about 10 days ago … they’re oil on canvas paintings by Ryosuke Kumakura, on display at the booth of Patron Gallery from Chicago. Kumakura was born in Japan, but currently lives and works in Brooklyn. I’m trying to find out what the significance of the t-shirts are … he’s also made paintings of socks and handkerchiefs, among other things, but I can’t find any write-up on either his site or his gallery’s site as to why these materials are his subject matter. Maybe it’s autobiographical, a diary of his possessions and surroundings? I don’t know … seems hard to believe that I can’t find any analytical writing about his work online, but I can’t. If you know anything about his work and would like to share, please do so in the comments below.
It’s a massive snowstorm that’s taking over the northeast coast today, we’ve got at least 6″ of snow already at 9:30am, with a projection of another 12-15″ of snow coming … and it occurred to me that the Italian artist and photographer Olivo Barbieri’s series of photographs from the Alps seems like a good analogy as to how it feels around here today. If you are also caught in the midst of this massive snowstorm, rather than climb a big mountain of snow like these people below, why not just stay in and stay warm with some arts games? Or print out some games for the kids?
Pictured below is “Alps, Geographies and People #18,” 2012, by Olivo Barbieri. For more on this artist, check out his website here.
When I was at the Independent Art Fair last weekend, I saw a guy wearing bright red pants and these colorful dot-covered sneakers (top left, bottom right). I asked him if I could take a picture, and not only did he say yes with a grin, but he did a little “modeling” for me by lifting his heal to show me the bottom of the shoes.
It certainly seems appropriate to wear sneakers like this when attending an art fair, especially if there are works by Yayoi Kusama on display … while I did see some of Kusama’s work at the various art fairs, these two pictures are just found photos of the artist so that you can see my visual association between the sneakers and her work. I’d love to know if the sneaker manufacturer is also familiar with Yayoi Kusama’s work?
I saw this painting by Tim Okamura at the VOLTA Art Fair, below left. It’s titled “Rosie,” and it’s an obvious reference to the J. Howard Miller poster of “Rosie the Riveter” (below right) which was commissioned by the Westinghouse Company’s War Production Coordinating Committee in 1942.
Okamura is a Canadian-born artist who has lived in New York City for the past 25+ years. He combines a realistic approach to the figure with a blend of collage, spray paint and mixed media in the background, meant to reflect his urban environment. He has been quoted as saying, “a large number of my subjects have been friends, neighbors, and acquaintances in Brooklyn, either born and raised or transplanted, but all with one thing in common: a compelling story.”
As I was wandering around the VOLTA Art Fair this past Sunday, I happened upon one art gallery booth where I saw a young girl of maybe 7 or 8 years of age taping a drawing on the wall between two art works, as you can see below (with a larger detail of the girl’s drawing, inset).
I assumed she was the daughter of the art dealer whose booth we were in, as she was going about her business with no one working there paying her much mind. I couldn’t resist asking her if her art work was for sale, and she said yes, and that she was asking $1 for it. If you look closely, she worked the price into the title (with a few mispellings thrown in). She’s got a backwards number one, followed by “$,” followed by “so many ameogos” – which I assume is her attempt to spell “amigos,” since it was indeed very crowded at the art fair that day.
I was exploring the Armory Show this past weekend, when I saw this piece (below left), titled “Chicken Rotation,” 2016, by Swiss-born artist Urs Fischer. Right away it had an air of familiarity, even though I had never seen the art work before … why? Because I recognized the two top chickens from a Google image search for “cartoon chicken,” the results of which are shown below right. If you’re wondering why I was ever searching for cartoon chickens, it’s because I was trying to find an image to match the look of a church in Madeira Beach, Florida.