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Jay Schmidt

Jay Schmidt, Free Art School Paintings

Jay Schmidt, Free Art School Paintings

Jay Schmidt is one of the more perplexing guys I’ve met, because he appears like a very clean cut, normal guy in his fifties (slacks and a dress shirt) – but there is something right under the surface that you can’t put your finger on.  I am hesitant to say madness, but maybe what passes for madness in a consumer culture.  Once you see his paintings it comes into focus, they present a parody of the world in a queasy wobbling, agitated, cartoonish iconography that lets you know exactly what he is thinking!

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Gavin Nolan

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Gavin Nolan has an uncanny ability to take images of historical figures and unveil their darkest desires and inner ugliness in some weird kind of anti-spirit aura portrait. Macabre and seductive all at once. He’ll be showing at Charlie Smith london from March 19 ro April 24th.

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Maksim Hem

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Collage artist Maksim Hem aptly titled this quiet series of works “Untitled Colours.” The name lends itself to the idea of objects overlooked, because they don’t scream and shout to get your attention. Hem’s restraint does not imply a lack of feeling but rather an attention to detail that is unnecessary to decorate. It’s like watching the Discovery Channel over Bravo–the life and times of baby cheetahs are just such a welcome change of pace.

Alexander Harding Creates Ethereal Spaces Using Sunlight As His Subject

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One of the most integral aspects of photography is the utilization of light. For his series, “Visible Light,” photographer Alexander Harding uses this vital resource as his subject. Harding manipulates natural sunlight, refracting it to create ethereal spaces filled with the soft luminescence of the sun’s rays.  Harding says,

Whether it is acknowledged or not, we all have a strong relationship with the sun. Its light enables our visual perception and at times, shapes our emotions. Although the sun affects how we feel, its light remains mysterious and ephemeral. We can feel it on our skin and in our eyes, but it seems intangible to us. We cannot hold or preserve it.

 

Through my work I explore the sun’s physical presence and quantitative character, attempting to give sunlight an environment to travel within and record its behaviors. I primarily use photography to make my work as its apparatus promotes a very critical and literal type of visual perception and it is processes are controlled by light itself.

Harding’s work asks viewers to consider the centrality and importance of sunlight, and to think of this primary energy source as an art object in and of itself. (via lens scratch)

Nest Made from 10,000 Reclaimed Wood Boards By Mark Reigelman

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Artist Mark Reigelman‘s new site-specific installation is aptly titled Reading Nest.  The structure was created just outside the Cleveland Public Library using thousands of reclaimed wood boards.  Reading Nest acts as an alternative setting for learning and growth.  In his statement Reigleman says of the installation’s symbolism:

“For centuries objects in nature have been associated with knowledge and wisdom. Trees of enlightenment and scholarly owls have been particularly prominent in this history of mythological objects of knowledge. The Reading Nest is a visual intermediary between forest and fowl. It symbolizes growth, community and knowledge while continuing to embody mythical roots.”   [via]

Kit Webster – Digital Sculpture

Kit Webster challenges the conventional use of space in a gallery with his installation, Enigmatica.  Using light to create an illusion of mass, Kit breaks up the room and reconfigures the environment with this digital sculpture.  I’d definitely like to see this in person.

Teppei Kaneuji’s Ready Made Plastics

Japanese artist Teppei Kaneuji’s assemblages of ready made objects could be described as ‘time based sculpture’, not only due to their process of making, but also because of the ideas he works with. In his White Discharge (Built-up Objects) series for example, objects are categorized by form and color, dismantled, and then piled up and connected to other objects, with white polyester resin poured gradually over the final construction. Kaneuji does not seek meaning the materials he selects or the forms he builds. Rather, he dislocates objects, depriving them of their original function and value as consumer goods. His method is rooted in his own physical senses and the rhythms of contemporary life as he experiences it; he compares his process to that of a music mix-tape, which links songs together using personal criteria.
(via junk culture)

Carl Jung’s Surreally Illustrated “The Red Book” Documents The Therapist’s Psychospiritual Journey

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If you’re familiar with ideas about art therapy, the intersection of Eastern and Western spirituality, personality attributes and assessments like Myers-Briggs, New Age philosophy, or Joseph Campbell’s “hero’s journey,” you have Carl Jung to thank. Best known for his work in psychotherapy and psychiatry and as the founder of analytical psychology, (distinct from Freud’s psychoanalysis), during his life, Jung also contributed to a beautifully illustrated personal journal between the years 1914-1930 known as The Red Book, or Liber Novus (Latin for New Book). This journal chronicles a deeply personal voyage of self-discovery that Jung did not wish to be published while he was alive for fear that the book could ruin his professional and personal life, and that people would think him mentally unstable. However, it’s the belief of Jungian scholar Sonu Shamdasani that Jung intended for this work to eventually be published. Shamdasani points to the fact that Jung’s journal is addressed, “dear friends,” and that that he would often lend the journal to friends and patients during his lifetime. After Jung died in 1961, his heirs were reluctant to release the contents of the book, and kept it stored away in a bank vault in Switzerland. It took Shamdasani 3 years to convince his heirs to allow The Red Book to be published, and an additional 13 years for the entirety of the calligraphic text to be translated from German to English.

 

Published in 2009, The Red Book contains Jung’s self-explorations, representing the source of many of Jung’s theories regarding the collective unconscious, archetypes, psychological types, and the process of individuation. “The overall theme of the book is how Jung regains his soul and overcomes the contemporary malaise of spiritual alienation. This is ultimately achieved through enabling the rebirth of a new image of God in his soul and developing a new world view in the form of a psychological and theological cosmology.” Accompanying the calligraphy of Jung’s text are incredibly controlled surreal illustrations of psychologically and spiritually thematic images.


Art critic and 
Huffington Post contributor Peter Frank considers The Red Book a great work of art, writing, “It is an endlessly fascinating and staggeringly luxurious artifact, a thing of beauty and of magic. It could pass for a Bible rendered by a medieval monk, especially for the care with which Jung entered his writing as ornate Gothic script. It just happens that his art is dedicated not to the glory of God or king, but to that of the human race.” Frank also identified the presence of a small egg within every image included in The Red Book, explaining that “the egg starts to give off light and then to explode out.”

Jung writes at one point in The Red Book, “There is only one way, and that is your way. You seek the path? I warn you away from my own. It can also be the wrong path for you. May each go his own way. I will be no savior, no lawgiver, no master teacher unto you. You are no longer little children. … May each seek out his own way. The way leads to mutual love in community. Men will come to see and feel the similarity and commonality of their ways.” You can read the entirety of The Red Book as an ebook over at the Internet Archive. (via npr and independent)