Jack Henry lives and works in New York. Using resin, cement, and found objects he creates cast pillars of discarded debris surrounded by swirls of color. In his own words: “I appropriate discarded objects seen by the roadside to create monuments to post-industrial America. The selection process is focused on man-made objects and structures such as: dilapidated houses, roadside memorials, tattered billboards, and other discarded materials. Each object is reinterpreted and presented as an artifact or a natural history museum model of something pulled from the contemporary landscape.The purpose is to evoke a sense of wonder from the banal byproducts of our failed but once successful modern society. Instead of merely pushing these man-made items into the peripheral of our everyday routine, I recreate the curiosities that happen when they depart from contact with people to move, decay, and harbor with other items to create monuments to cultural disaffection. “
Last night I was invited to attend a preview of Exit Through The Gift Shop, the much hyped documentary by the street artist Banksy. By now, you all know that I’m an avid documentary junkie. I’ll watch a documentary about paint drying on a wall if it’s well made. I’ll admit, I went into the screening room expecting to hate it- so was Banksy able to win me over?
California-based artist Gregory Kloehn was tired of making sculptures for rich people. “It just sits there,” he said. “I kind of think that if you’re putting so much effort into something it would be nice if it actually did something.”
With the help of a close knit art community, Kloehn began his Homeless Homes Project, a collaborative endevour that provides sturdy, innovative and mobile shelters for the homeless.
They look like sculptures, but they actually serve a purpose.
Kloehn starts the process by installing beds, sinks, stoves, and storage shelves on regular old dumpsters and shipping containers. All of the ‘amenities’ are made with repurposed materials found on the streets.
To prove that his dumpster homes are fit to live, the artist put it to the test. He has actually lived in one that he built for himself, and fitted with such conveniences as granite counter topped kitchen, a microwave, a mini-stove, a fridge, and even a cushioned sofa.
With a successful run, Kloehn is a now a full-time home builder. So far he has built 10 tiny homes, some of which have already found tenants. (via Amusing Planet)
We posted about Russell Tyler about a year and a half ago, and since then some of his paintings have taken a slight minimalist turn. Granted, it’s not trying to be Frank Stella, but instead of the werewolves and all-over smorgasbords of characters and color, he’s giving us more geometric shapes and patterns whose bright pink and blue zig zags give it a kind of LA-gear flare. The goopy application is still there and they’re still joyful as ever, but it’ll be interesting to see if where Russell ends up as he keeps blending Niki de Saint Phalle and more geometric shapes. I can’t wait to see more!
Ps. If you’re in San Francisco check out Russell’s show opening November 9th at Fouladi Projects!
If the black mask on the cover wasn’t an indicator to you that theme was unorthodox, then I don’t know what is! It’s definitely interesting how he places a black mask over the faces of his subjects. In the one instance that he doesn’t, he removes the model’s eyes. Just a little creepy. Maybe it’s a shot at the fashion industry or maybe a comment on the concept of beauty itself. In any case, Bryan Schnelle’s work has definitely struck a nerve with me.
Texas born artist, Teri Haven, documents a collective of outsiders in her series, The Last Free Place. Her photographs seem to capture moments from another era, or perhaps, where time in of itself has ceased to exist. Haven spent three years, 2006 – 2008, living part-time in a squatters community in southern California known as Slab City. Beautifully cinematic, her images draw parallels to Harmony Korine’s Gummo, acting as the aesthetic truth behind his fiction. The carnival-reminiscent, dream land of Slab City is a barren landscape located in between the Salton Sea (a man-made lake accidentally created in 1905) and an active bombing site. Beginning shortly after World War II, Slab City became a safe haven for “drifters, dropouts, artists, outlaws and other cultural dissidents who settle alongside the addicted and the elderly.” During her time spent amongst the Slab City dwellers, Haven set out to document the struggle that exists between the boundaries of freedom and isolation. Each portrait reflects its own unique identity, as the inhabitants of Slab City seem to have created personal selfhood through means alien to societal norms. She states:
“Slab City is a collection of fiercely independent, utterly original individuals. Cast out of, or just drifting away from, the “American Dream,” they come here seeking freedom from rules, rent, and the assaults of a society often unsympathetic to the underclass. Some are victims of poverty, of bad choices and bad luck. Others have renounced the “material world,” refusing to trade their time for money; many simply yearn for the sense of freedom that comes from vast open spaces. And though desert life can be extremely harsh, and in truth there is little freedom in poverty, here they find love and strength within a community that accepts and nurtures the individuality of its members.”