When you think of graffiti geometric abstraction isn’t the style that comes to mind but E1000 has managed to mix graffiti and the long and rich history of geometric abstraction on city streets. Filled with rich warm hues that gradate from dark to light E1000 is bringing minimalism and geometry into the most unexpected places.
Katherine Akey’s works traces the delicacies of life on this planet in various ways. Through photograms and photographs, she narrates the whimsical beauty of nature. These smokey, sparkling greys are from a body of work titled Aurora, where she captured the mysterious movement of the night sky. Her penchant for unearthing, discovering, and a curiosity about the sacred aspects of voyage have imbedded in her a unique way of viewing the world, one she projects masterfully from glass lens to gelatin. Outfitting herself to visit Svalbard in the next year, she will no doubt deliver a new body of work that is even more sophisticated and compelling.
Akey is a beautiful writer, and her this excerpt from her blog shows her motivations and what led her to commit to the upcoming Arctic Circle Residency in Svalbard. Beautiful and compelling, it reads like poetry:
“These questions and their associated emotional valences could be analyzed using the machines and tools of a scientist; I choose, however, to use the events of the past, the texts left behind, the myths generated, and, hopefully, my own foray into those parts of the world as material for art making. My work also confronts the reality that adventure as we have long thought of it is just about snuffed out. Astronauts go to the safety of space stations instead of venturing into the infinite universe, and robots have taken the place of humans to explore the dusty surface of Mars. The ambitions of so many of these men who went north to explore were complicated and compelling; what drove them to embark, what kindled the hope that kept them alive, and what they give credit to for their success once they return are all completely different things. The North Pole itself is elusive and misleading; there’s a geographic north pole, a magnetic north pole, the celestial North Pole, and a northern pole of inaccessibility. The Arctic, unlike the Antarctic, is a frozen ocean, not a continent; there’s no land mass, just sea ice. The mythic explorer hero is also a foggy, misleading concept; these men were egotistical, driven by ambition, and many of them died miserable, needless deaths alone. All of my interests and works come out of this deep respect for the Human; I see it so clearly in these fevered moments of triumph-cum-horror, like the World Wars or the Golden Age(s) of exploration.”
A long-time fan of Ralph Steadman, I still encounter works of his that have somehow missed my radar. Published in 1995, a special edition of George Orwell’s “Animal Farm” (currently out of print) features 100 full-color and half-tone illustrations by the artist. Maria Popova over at Brain Pickings was able to find a copy of this rare edition, citing quotations from Orwell’s “The Freedom of the Press,” the proposed but unpublished preface to the original “Animal Farm” that accompanies Steadman’s raw and gritty illustrations.
Steadman has long been known as a Gonzo artist, a reputation due in large part to his long partnership with Hunter S. Thompson, but has also illustrated other books in his signature inkblot style including, “Alice in Wonderland,”“Treasure Island,” and most recently, “Fahrenheit 451,” in addition to drawing everything from political caricatures to wine and beer labels. NPR notes that he’s even written an opera libretto.
Of his fluid style, Steadman says, “You don’t pencil in anything; you just start going and see where it leads you. It’s an adventure, a little journey. Every drawing is a kind of journey. There’s an organic quality that is quite potent, you know. You surprise yourself, and that’s quite nice.”
A documentary about Steadman narrated by Johnny Depp, titled “For No Good Reason,” is set to release later this year. The film’s director, Charlie Paul, says, “I was concerned that Ralph’s art would be the man and that I’d end up trying to make a film with someone who had this kind of aggressive attitude towards the world. But Ralph is such a lovely, warm and generous man, and yet he goes to his table and creates these pieces of art which are dangerous and, to be perfectly honest, quite upsetting sometimes.” ( via brain pickings and npr)
This is a must see documentary for anyone interested in the art world. I walked out of the theater shaking my head in disbelief!
The Art of the Steal follows the struggle for control of Dr. Albert C. Barnes’ 25 billion dollar collection of modern and post-impressionist art collection of, a treasury of works by Renoir (181 of them), Cezanne (69), Van Gogh (7), Seurat (6), Picasso (46) and Matisse (59), to name just a few, all of it tucked away in the Philadelphia suburb of Lower Merion in a Paul Cret-designed villa Barnes built for it in 1924. The collection contains some of the key works of early Modernism, including Cezanne’s Nudes in a Landscape and The Card Players, Seurat’s Models and Matisse’s The Joy of Life, jewel in the crown of his fauve period.
UK graphic designer Joe Porter has a refreshing style. A combination of minimal color and collage inspired design makes his work eye catching. This young new designer is a recent graduate from Brighton University. He has already been featured in several publications i.e. Computer Arts and Wallpaper Magazine. Not too bad for this up incoming designer.
Liam Devowski lives and works in San Francisco as an Art Director at ad agency Mekanism. His bold colored messages and sharp imagery always have a way of looking at the bright side. One reoccurring motif in his work is the PBS logo with a single tear. This added design element playfully changes the meaning from “Public Broadcasting Service” to “Pretty Bummed and Sad”. Devowski takes pleasure in occasional sadness and uses it to fuel optimistic and enlivened design work.