Australian artist Troy Emery’s practice is an ongoing project of producing a series of artworks that investigate decoration and the aesthetics of craft associated with natural history and the animal form . In his sculpture practice, taxidermy foam bodies are covered in bright polyester pompoms and craft textiles such as tassle fringing. The artworks, non-descript predator animals with their playfully colorful pelts, become hyper exotic specimens in a menagerie of art / animal objects.
Watch a fantastic short documentary on Troy Emery after the jump.
It’s really easy to hate on Thomas Kinkade. His landscape paintings, which boasts themselves as “paintings of light,” are dull, wooden, and nearly all the same. Wholly uninteresting, Kinkade’s paintings beg to have a little pizzaz added to them. Luckily, artist Jeff Bennett has solved this problem. He’s added the Star Wars Imperial Forces to Kinkade’s work. Storm Troopers, Star Destroyers, and more invade the candle-lit houses, babbling brooks, and flower gardens. Houses are set on fire and landscaping is trampled. And, throughout it all, you are cheering for the historically “bad guys.”
Bennett’s keen Photoshop skills allow him to seamlessly integrate the two worlds, making them believable and thus very entertaining. In a way, this series mimics the typical good vs. evil story. The exception is that who we perceive as good and evil is turned on its head. You’d think that tranquil Thomas Kinkade paintings would be harmless. But think again. Kinkade, with his lowest common denominator work, overpriced and mass produced chachkies, and greed (in 2006, his company was convicted of defrauding two Virginia gallery owners), is really the bad guy in this scenario. The Imperial Forces are helping destroy banality. (Via Adweek).
SVA grad Mu Pan brings East Asian woodblock aesthetics to his colorful, animated paintings. Not much of a “Zen” vibe is to be found here, though. Full of life, the Brooklyn artist’s work explodes off the canvas in a rush of sex and violence. Base, animalistic sensibilities are collected and processed en masse within each piece, and hardly any opportunity for impact is passed over. Really engrossing stuff, whether the focus is placed on a few central figures, or all-encompassing atmosphere.
Guy Overfelt is a conceptual artist based in San Francisco. His work spans multiple mediums and defies easy classification. Whether it is fluorescent light fixtures in the shape of a pentagram mirrored into infinity or wallpaper made from re appropriated punk iconography his projects explore pop culture in a sardonic way. Car culture is another reoccurring theme in his work. One series utilizes a 1977 Pontiac Trans AM as a printmaking tool. Works are made by “burning out” over canvas and paper. These monographs resemble gloomy landscapes. Overfelt has even recreated the Trans AM using inflated nylon to comment on large scale manufacturing and our quest for the “American Dream”.
The photographs of Matthew Monteith‘s series Guardare turn the subject back on to the viewer. His images depict people explaining, gazing at, and otherwise admiring art. When I first heard about the series I was prepared to be annoyed with the pedantic gestures and expressions of people acting smarter than thou. However, the photographs are surprisingly endearing. People are visibly moved, sincerely engaged with the work often just out of frame. Guardare perhaps suggests that the art in a gallery doesn’t happen with the work but between two viewers discussing it.
American photographer Christian Weber‘s work often finds him in the midst of a barren landscape. This can sometimes mean a cold, industrial city or a desolate NASA laboratory. Or, in the more traditional sense of “barren landscape,” it can mean the wide open spaces of Iceland or New Mexico, pictured above. The way he chooses to capture these spaces – in a very straightforward, documentarian/detached manner, is a reflection of the environments themselves.
One click on A2’s “collection” tab reveals a slew of objects that you either wish you had thought of or owned already. Bold primary and secondary colors dominate their pieces given them a playful but sophisticated feel. Their designs are smart, simple and playful and embody the spirit of Swedish design.
You may feel a feeling of familiarity in Toronto based painter Odran Edward’s work. Odran is inspired by the classical spiritual sculptures, and explores them by creating psychedelic-impressionist paintings of them.