This weekend on Beautiful Decay we want to welcome you over to the dark side, where a vast amount of artists are churning out contemporary art fueled by the fire of Metal. A multitude of artists these days are making art inspired by the crushing sounds and dark spirit of Heavy Metal, Death Metal and Doom music, all of which weave in and out of several other genres.
I’ve been a huge fan for a while now of the work made by artists Skinner, Ben Venom and Martin Durazo, which are strongly informed by Heavy Metal. This past week after chatting with artist and Beautiful Decay owner, Amir H. Fallah and artist Skinner and reaching out on Facebook to learn more about artists tied into this music scene, I was turned onto a breadth of incredible artists. A lot of artists working with metal as inspiration have strong crossover into design and illustration, album art, posters (especially for the band Mastadon), band merch and murals. There’s also a strong genre of work that explores dark spiritual matter, mythology and death that is absolutely captivating. You can expect upcoming coverage of these sub-genres in coming weeks.
I recently got two great books in the mail and thought i’d share them with you as these are mandatory for any legitimate art book collection. Get a sneak peak and read about the new Skinner Monograph and Adios #4 after the jump.
The art of Skinner is full of mullets, monsters and metal heads, not to mention the lurkers, samurai and lil’ devils. The self-proclaimed nerd for life takes inspiration from the world of fantasy, giving life to the dreams (or sometimes nightmares) of Slayer fans and Dungeon masters everywhere. The beautifully detailed works combine the aesthetics of street art, comic book illustrations, and something akin to black velvet paintings on acid. Each work has such an immense sense of epicness, it’s hard to not get caught up in the world created. And while many of the paintings and drawings convey infinitely complex scenes that you could look at for hours, Skinner also makes lighter works that are hard not to love, especially when they’re called things like Eternal Jamnation, and have a dark, glowing monster jamming on a guitar, surrounded by bats. It’s the kind of work that just oozes passion, because no one could make images so far from reality without being totally immersed in the process. It’s like a Metalocolypse Halloween episode 365 days a year. But, despite the awesome appearance of his work, Skinner is extremely introspective and self-critical, constantly challenging himself as an artist and working to create something completely innovative. His determination to return to a more childlike inspiration, a time when “it was just raw freedom, there were no expectations, there were no ideas of good or bad it was just being in the moment and trying [his] best to do something that looks good.”
Painter of demons and all around good guy (and goofball) Skinner recently relaunched his website with literally hundreds of delicious and frighteningly good drawings, paintings, and illustrations. To celebrate the site launch Skinner also decided to make some hilarious videos talking smack, crossing out wack taggers, and telling ya’ll why he is the illest graffiti legend out there. Once you watch the full video after the jump you’ll be asking yourself “how come this guys not included in the Art In The Streets show at MOCA ?”
I just about fainted when I got some behind-the-scenes studio pics back from Skinner, one of our featured artist from Book 3, including his van?! Holy triumphant-unicorn from hell-monster-mash-Crystal-stash-Wizard-spell lightening bolt riddled beast of awesomeness! His studio is like a headbanger’s ball, topped floor to ceiling with multi-sided-die, long lost relatives of Iron Maiden’s Eddie the Head, the occasional red plastic party cup, and treasures that seem to exceed a greedy dragon’s doubloon pile indeed.
I’m excited to check out the new works that will be up at San Francisco’s White Walls August 14th. In his words, the exhibition will include: “large old timey halloween mask replicas of my own design, 24 epic psychedelic fantasy paintings inspired by my own unhealthy feelings of global dread…one epic painting (a week for six months was the goal I set and im well under way and about to finish my 17th piece). And they are getting larger as well…” And a partridge in a pair tree. According to Merlin’s crystal ball, the future holds great things for Skinner indeed- we’re excited to see what he comes up with!
Beautiful/Decay spent the last three days at the Pool Tradeshow in Las Vagas. Throughout our time, we met a lot of fun and interesting people. For me, the one person that stands out the most was probably the nicest. Sacramento Artist Skinner is one hell of a rad dude. His work is insane and his attention to detail is on point. Skinner continues to pump out amazing piece after piece and before you know it, this guy is going to blow up. Make sure to check out his site for some well priced pieces. Keep it up dude!