Luka Mjeda - TEETH AS ART

I want to introduce a good friend and fascinating artist.

I met Luka a couple of years ago at an art fair in Los angeles, where he was exhibiting some work. Immediately he reminded me of these old and cherished photojournalist, such as Capa and Bresson, the way he explained his work was like listening to a story. Since we have tried to stay in touch even when our schedules take over.

Luka Mjeda is not only responsible for keeping photography in all its form alive in Croatia by organizing shows for local and international artists, but has also documented and created photographic research such as the project presented below.

The 130.000 year old archeological findings of the Krapina Neandertals teeth provide a variety of data about their biology. Beyond this, the teeth are also images of art, stimulating the imagination of scientists and artists by their striking appearance. As part of the 2 year NESPOS project, Luka Mjeda photographed the entire Krapina Neandertal collection. Everyone looks at images in unique, personal ways. The scientist sees the arrangement of the cusps, the wear on the crown and sometimes odd arrangements of the cusps suggesting an image of a baby’s face or crouching figure.

What does the artist Luka Mjeda see? Are they just teeth or dirty old fossils? Not to him and not for these teeth. Beyond their anthropological importance, these teeth contain a surreal component - a concept of constant change and development of humans through ancient history. Intrigued by this idea, he allowed himself to manipulate the original images and create a new perspective and homage to the way we view – TEETH AS ART.

 

Available size and format.

C – prints

40 x 50 cm (edition of 25)

50 x 70 cm (edition of 10)

70x100 cm (edition of 5)

Luka Mjeda
Hrvatski fotografski centar
Croatian Photographic Center
www.lukamjeda.com

Miami Art Basel 2016.

My Dear fellow collectors and art aficionados,

This was a great year for art in general, we have seen forgotten treasures reappear from private collections. We have seen some new record breaking prices for a lot of Modern and Contemporary artists. What a truly great year this was!

Below are a few favorite pieces and artists from this year's Miami Basel fair. I have picked some personal favorites as well as some new discoveries. Since there was so much to see and do this year,  guiding a couple of my concierge service clients through the multiple fairs and private events, as well as prepping the Lissoni Villa with art, from the gallery, for the Launch of the Ritz Carlton residences. I have decided to not bore you this year with long paragraphs of words describing, analyzing and sometimes confusing reviews, instead I have decided to make a top 15 list of what caught my eye the most this year.

I hope you enjoy the selection below, and if we don't speak before the years end, I wish all of you a wonderful end of year, a Happy New Year, and I'll see you all next year with more art for you to discover.

Of course, if you have any questions, requests, or Christmas gifts needs, do not hesitate to contact me.

Sincerely yours,

Laurent de Posson de Wanfercee

 

Joan Miro,
Personnage et oiseau dans la nuit.
Oil, Charcoal and pastel on Linen. 1944

 

 

Wifredo Lam,
Sans Titre. 
Oil on Canvas. 1959

 

 

Roberto Matta,
La Lumiere Noire.
Oil on canvas, 1943

 

 

IMG_9780 copy.jpg
Leonora Carrington,
Temple of the word.
Oil and gold leaf on canvas, 1954

 

 

 

Idris Khan,
Autonomy.
3 stamped glass sheets, aluminium, black ink. 2016

 

 

 

IMG_9753.JPG
Hassan Massoudy,
Untitled " This day will never be repeated again, each instant is an inestimable jewel" - Ta Kuan
Ink on pigment paper.

 

 

 

FullSizeRender-2.jpg
Ronald Jackson
Portrait of color- series #2, 2016
Oil, mixed media collage on cradled wooden panel

 

 

 

IMG_9755.JPG
Rene Romero Schüler,
Kasia.
Oil on canvas, 2016

 

 

 

Michael Labua,
Ashes to Ashes.
Mixed media on wood panel, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

Tomak.
"Body parts" series, unique prints.
Collage,2013

 

 

 

Screen Shot 2016-12-08 at 7.43.39 PM.png
Harouni,
Untitled.
Oil on canvas

 

 

 

Trimmel_Raumfaltung_6145 medium.jpg
Isabella Trimmel,
Raumfaltung-6145
Computer vectors on archival pigment print.

 

 

 

Enrique Gomez de Molina
mixed media, beetle wings, mammal tusks. 2016

 

 

 

Troy Abbott
mixed media work.
work shown : Social Media, Tiananmen, and Paris
 

 

 

click image for video link

click image for video link

Island 6
Backseat Baby
TFT display, acrylic painting, IR sensor, 8-bit controller, media player, teak.
2014

Danny Sanchez Photomicrographer

We wanted to start this post by congratulating Danny on opening his online store.

 The store will sell his prints in one size only, on a specific fine art giclee paper, at a fix low price, to enable anyone to afford his work.

 These prints, however will not be numbered or signed and so will not inherit any additional value but their visual beauty.

http://www.mineralienphotos.com

 

Below is a great article regarding the intricaties of shooting micro photography and gems.

 

Modified Rheinberg Illumination

Nathan Renfro and Danny J. Sanchez

Figure 1. In one method of applying Rheinberg-type illumination, glass slides are fitted to the end of two fiber-optic illuminators and painted with red and blue ink (left) to create a filter that is easily positioned by moving the colored portion of the glass slide into the light path (right). Photos by Danny J. Sanchez. 

Lighting control is one of the most important considerations for maximizing the use of the gemological microscope; with greater control over illumination sources, more information may be gathered from observing a specimen. An interesting technique that gives the microscopist another lighting tool is modified Rheinberg illumination, also known as differential color illumination (M. Pluta, Advanced Light Microscopy: Specialized Methods, Vol. 2, PWN-Polish Scientific Publishers, Warsaw, 1989, pp. 113). This method, as modified for gemological microscopy, employs the use of a contrasting color filter between each illumination source and the subject (figure 1) to achieve an “optical staining” effect (figure 2). When viewing crystallographically aligned subjects such as negative crystals or inclusions with well-defined, reflective crystal faces, each illumination source highlights areas that have the same crystallographic orientation (figure 3). This provides dramatic false-color contrast to an otherwise low-contrast subject. This enhanced contrast makes it easier to observe the relationship between areas in an inclusion scene with identical and also differing crystallographic orientations. 

Figure 2. This silvery metal sulfide inclusion in fluorite shows angular crystal faces, but the low contrast in the image on the left makes it difficult to resolve the orientation of the faces from different sections of the inclusion. Rheinberg illumination provides stark contrast between differently oriented regions by using two colored illumination sources that reflect their independent color off of crystallographically aligned crystal faces, as seen in the center and right images. This allows the microscopist to easily observe the different orientations of the crystal faces in the metal sulfide inclusion, as evidenced by the dramatic boundary of the two contrasting colors. Photomicrographs by Danny J. Sanchez; field of view 1.66 mm. 

Figure 3. With modified Rheinberg illumination to impart contrasting color on some of the crystal faces, the negative crystals in the rock crystal quartz (left) prove to be crystallographically aligned (right). Photomicrographs by Nathan Renfro; field of view 7.34 mm.

We wanted to congratulate Danny on opening his own online store, which will sell his prints in one size on a specific fine art giclee paper, at a fix low price to enable anyone to afford his work.

 These prints, however are not numbered or signed and so will not inherit any additional value but their visual beauty.

Mei Xian Qiu : Pilgimage Project

PILGRIMAGE PROJECT (Ongoing):

 

TITLE:   Pilgrimage; Die Ehemalige Verehrten Objekte

 

CONCEPT:

 

Elie Wiesel, wrote that “most people think that shadows follow, precede or surround beings or objects. The truth is that they also surround words, ideas, desires, deeds, impulses and memories.” In this work, these shadows, and their potent power, are exorcised, ritually purified, cleansed, reconsecrated, annihilated, and resurrected. 

 

 Three years ago, a German military family put certain artifacts under my care, to “make sense of with art,” citing an imperative to wipe history clean, and start anew. The artifacts consist of three to four generations of household crucifixes, prayer books, hymnals, bibles, and war medals from various wars (including WWII). The objects were obviously loved and tenderly cared for, laden with memory, and had personal writings and notes inside the pages of the books. Although the present, living owners are Agnostic and Atheistic, the objects themselves are rooted in spiritual practice and/or in a perceived heroism and sense of duty. As such it seemed to make sense that the objects and the agony of their shadows, needed a Pilgrimage of their own, in lieu of and for benefit of their owners and many others who shared similar histories. 

 

Fittingly recorded in Los Angeles where metamorphosis and reinvention aredaily occurrences,  the videos, interviews, field notes, and photographs, of the formerly venerated objects, and the words , ideas, desires, deeds, impulses, and memories contained and surrounding them ---- undergo a series of pilgrimage “awakenings” and “restarts.” These consists of rituals and ritualistic examinations by spiritual leaders of Native American Shamanic, Christian, Kabbalist Judaic, and Eastern practices.  The points of views and cultural experiences of the leaders themselves remanifest, review, and insert themselves into the symbology of the artifacts and change their nature.

Up coming shows and event

CHRISTIE'S AUCTION:  proposed dated October 13, 2016

Contemporary Female Asian Artists-- maybe in Hong Kong or New York

Asian 20th Century and Contemporary Art
CHRISTIE'S | 20 Rockefeller Plaza | New York, NY 10020
tel. (212) 974-4540 | fax (212) 636-4932| mobile (917) 287-3040
staylor@christies.com

 

October --November 2016 Opening Reception

Exhibit curated by Todd Williamson and  Rebecca Wilson, the curator of Saatchi Art, former director of Saatchi Gallery London.  

The project centers around artists and their interpretation or response to "hate & violence".

 NPR and possibly Artbound may do a series of Living Room art talks around Hate & Violence and how it affects the arts and artists. 

This will likely be part of  of the Hammer's Pacific Standard Time, Made in LA.

Saatchi is doing worldwide publicity for the event.  

West Hollywood will sponsor.  

We are planning a lecture and a living room session on hate and violence with the artists and some special guests and are talking to NPR to cover and host as well as Artbound.  Actor Blake Griffin will moderate.  

Interview:

 

https://youtu.be/K3uV8q005VU

 

Jeremy Kidd's Panorama Mesdag Museum Shoe in Den Haag, Netherlands

PANORAMA MESDAG OPENING OCT 15th

BV Panorama Mesdag

Zeestraat 65

2518 AADen Haag

phone: 070 310 66 65

email: info@panorama-mesdag.nl

October 5/6, 2016    Start installation exhibition  

October 13, 2016    Press presentation 

October 15, 2016    OPENING   

 March 26, 2017        End of exhibition

 

 

 

 

 

 

JEREMY KIDD (b. UK, 1962)

As a grandson of the famous sculptor Barbara Hepworth (1903-1975) & Ben Nicholson (1894-1982) Jeremy Kidd began his career as a sculptor and painter. When digital photography (invented in 1975) became accessible around 1990, Kidd was one of the first artists to experiment with the medium. Photography had been accepted as a fully-fledged medium in the visual arts since the 1980s but at this point it entered a new phase.

 

Travel is central to Kidd’s work, and his road trip around the United States was a primary source of inspiration. Thinking of the 19th-century settlers who had pushed on towards the West, Kidd became impressed by both the natural and urban landscapes through which he passed and the contrasts between them. A characteristic feature of his works, with their intense colours, is the physical appearance of the photographs, with capricious cut-out shapes and undulating surfaces, for instance. The physical shape of his photographs is one with their content and their visual qualities, and emphasises the nature of the location depicted as well the process of reassembling the multiple photographs.

 

Kidd sees it as a limitation of photography that it cannot reproduce the actual viewing experience. That is why he takes large numbers of photographs, subsequently blending them to make a single convincing image. The true visual experience is a collaboration between eyes and memory. For instance, when you look at a tree, your gaze is supplemented by previous observations that enable you to become conscious of that tree’s overall shape. A single image is therefore not enough, and with this in mind, Kidd developed his own perspective in gazing at the landscape. He invites you to experience the unique dynamic energy of the city or the natural world through his art.

 

CAPTIONS JK 

Jeremy Kidd makes his ‘panoramic sketches’ with a smartphone as he wanders around the city or the countryside. These digital sketches then serve as a point of departure for the later artwork. He studies the chosen location day and night for an entire week, and using a DSLR or Mirrorless Digital Camera and various lenses, records the chosen spot with hundreds of photographs from which he then selects a few dozen for a finished piece. The next stage is to use photo editing software to create his new interpretation of the landscape, a process that takes an average of three months. In the final stage the work is given its specific shape as well as the lustrous finish that adds even greater intensity to the brilliant colours and gives Kidd’s work an almost filmic quality

 

 

CITYSCAPE

Jeremy Kidd depicts both natural and urban landscapes in his work. The images that stand out most clearly are complex photographs of major cities. Architecture is an old theme in photography: the immovability and clear structure of buildings exert great appeal. Yet it is these core values that Kidd completely overturns. Streets unfold beyond the ‘ordinary’ frame of a photograph, drawing the viewer’s gaze inward. His photographs contain a plethora of details, light and colour contrasts, and sometimes day and nocturnal scenes blended together. Kidd’s distortions of buildings and his mixed vantage points soon sow confusion, prompting questions as to what you are looking at. To Kidd the former sculptor it is not the beauty of buildings but their shapes and light contrasts that make them interesting as sculptural elements in a photograph. He depicts busy cities without people in them, and yet the dramatic quality that is created displays their true quality as lively cities.

 

 

Kidd sees his work as related to the sublime. In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, artists tried to depict the feelings that the expansive, beautiful and at the same time menacing natural world aroused in them, linking these feelings to the insignificance of human beings. Kidd’s work does not evoke a sense of unease or danger, but it does convey the uncontrollable nature of the man-made city. As viewers we have never seen the city like this: through Kidd’s eyes the images are overwhelming – and indeed partake of the sublime.

 

 

NATURAL LANDSCAPE

As a painter, Kidd is conscious of the history of painting and draws inspiration from it in his work as a photographer. Kidd was deeply moved by the grandeur and drama of the American landscape. He felt an affinity with the nineteenth-century Romantic painters of the Hudson River School. They painted grand, idealised landscapes around the Hudson River in New York State, frequently with dramatic skies, as are also found in Kidd’s work.

 

Kidd incorporates the elements of time and movement into his work. He shoots photographs of the same place over a long period of time and then incorporates the different times and conditions into his artwork. The Impressionists too sometimes made several paintings of the same place. Like traditional landscape painters, Kidd elaborates the ‘sketches’ he has made outside later in the studio.

 

Kidd’s work testifies clearly to his early training as a sculptor. The physical shape, undulations and cutouts make the photograph into what is virtually a wall sculpture. These devices encourage the viewer to think about what a photograph is, in much the same way that modern painters experimented and reflected on the essence of a painting. In some of Kidd’s works (not displayed here) he quotes elements from the landscape by adding sculptures to the photographic installations. This creates an interesting tension between traditional photography and sculpture.

 

KIDD & MESDAG

 

In the months of preparation that would culminate in the making of his panorama, Hendrik Willem Mesdag (1831-1915) used not only his own sketches but also photographs of the area around the Seinpost Dune in Scheveningen. These he commissioned in 1880 from Heinrich Wilhelm Wollrabe (1843–1928), whose photographs show some of the details that can be seen in the panorama.

 

Jeremy Kidd in turn studied the same area around the Seinpost Dune and created a spectacular impression of Scheveningen especially for this exhibition. The spaces between the freestanding buildings in the panorama have since been completely filled in. With the aid of colour and light contrasts, Kidd nonetheless manages to subtly accentuate these monumental old buildings.

 

If you look closely at Scheveningen Pier I (red rooms) you will be struck by the patch of light in the sky (distress flare) that appears above the bright lights around the end of the pier. But this is a different quality of light than that of the festive boulevard with the silhouette of the famous Kurhaus. Here Kidd has captured a rescue operation at sea, just as Mesdag too depicted several ships in distress in his day.

 

In the artworks depicting Scheveningen that Kidd made for this exhibition we see his familiar themes of the city and the natural world. But there is also an allusion to the career of Hendrik Willem Mesdag. For he too focused on cityscapes as a young man, before he became known as the famous painter of the North Sea coast and the life of Scheveningen fishing village.

Descendance of Bushido

MIYA ANDO

A descendant of Bizen sword makers, New York-based emerging artist Miya Ando was raised among sword smiths tuned Buddhist priests in a temple in Okayama, Japan. Ando is half Japanese and half Russian-American and grew up bilingually within two distinct cultures, spending her childhood between Japan and Northern California. She received a bachelor’s degree in East Asian Studies from the University of California at Berkeley, and attended Yale University to study Buddhist iconography and imagery. After university, she apprenticed at the master metal smith Hattori Studio in Japan and in 2009 did a residency at Northern California's Public Art Academy.

Combining traditional techniques of her ancestry with modern industrial technology, Ando skillfully transforms sheets of burnished steel and anodized aluminum into ephemeral, abstract paintings suffused with subtle gradations of color.

The foundation of her practice is the transformation of surfaces. She produces light-reflecting gradients on her metal paintings by applying heat, sandpaper, grinders, acid and patinas, irrevocably altering the material’s chemical properties. It’s by an almost meditative daily repetition of these techniques that Ando is able to subtract, reduce and distill her concept until it reaches its simplest form. For Ando, the paradoxical pairing of metal with spiritual subject matter is intentional. She says: “My work is an exploration into the duality of metal and its ability to convey strength and permanence, yet in the same instance absorb shifting color and capture the fleetingness of light. It reminds us of the transitory nature of all things in life.”

Miya Ando is the recipient of many awards, including the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant in 2012. Her work has been exhibited extensively all over the world, including in a recent show curated by Nat Trotman of the Guggenheim Museum. Miya Ando has produced numerous public commissions, most notably a thirty-foot-tall commemorative sculpture in London built from World Trade Center steel to mark the ten-year anniversary of 9/11. She lives and works in New York.

Desert Seam

Jeremy Kidd

"It seems unrealistic to expect a single photographic shot, a single moment in time, to convey the human experience of seeing. We visually explore our environment in the third and fourth dimensions as we build our personal visual journey”.

British-born, LA-­­­based Artist Jeremy Kidd approaches landscape photography innovatively, by combining sculptural elements and condensing up to 100 long exposure photographs into a single work. He believes, this to be a more cohesive way of expressing a landscape pictorially to an audience. 

The “Joshua Tree” series started as fluid IPhone sketches. Using the “Pan mode” kinetically as a "Sketch tool,” I scanned the landscape with the IPhone, responding to the geology and topography of my surroundings as a visceral act, pivoting and moving in rhythm with the flowing lines of land and horizon. The IPhone sketches allow me to have a very responsive relationship to my surroundings. Then I re-shoot immediately the scene with my primary DSLR camera and splice, blend, clone, match and paint until I have rendered a much larger version of the ubiquitous IPhone process. This slow process seems akin to a more traditional method of landscape painting, where sketches are collected then the artist embarks upon the studio-based rendering. The trick of course is to retain the immediacy.

We move intuitively through the landscape, tracing hillsides rocky outcrops or city skylines, rhythmically with eye and body. Driving in a car is a particularly sculptural exchange with our environment. Carving lines that have been cut by man through nature, a road can undulate through smooth graceful landscapes, dipping, arching, and cambering through trees. We experience the movement, gravity and topography of our environment accentuated by union with the car, velocity and road. Using the panoramic mode similarly and kinetically I reenact this motion.

THE INTERRUPTED LANDSCAPE

FEBRUARY 13, 2016 - APRIL 17, 2016

OPENING RECEPTION: SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 20TH, 4:00 - 600 PM 

Museum of Art and History 
665 West Lancaster Blvd., Lancaster CA 93534

SADDLEBACK BUTTE INSTALLATION 1 (2016)     INK JET PRINT/ WOOD/ PLASTIC 10 FEET X 26 FEET

SADDLEBACK BUTTE INSTALLATION 1 (2016)     INK JET PRINT/ WOOD/ PLASTIC 10 FEET X 26 FEET

From Cuba With Love

Over the last year, i have had the joy of being introduce to Cuba's established and the young emerging artists, who are taking the art world by storm at recent fairs. I have put together a small list of what I believe will be and are the future of the cuban art movement. Although they are way to many artists to showcase and discuss, here are my first nominees.

Cuando El Viento Pasa, Inside 2015       Oil on Canvas 130cm x 130cm           by Alfredo Mendoza

Cuando El Viento Pasa, Inside 2015       Oil on Canvas 130cm x 130cm           by Alfredo Mendoza

Alfredo is a recent graduate from the “Academia de Artes Plásticas ‘Carlos Enrique’” of Granma, Cuba. His most recent personal expositions include “Cuando el viento pasa” (Havana, Cuba) and “Retratos” (Granma, Cuba), amongst others.

Mirror Series, Untitled 2015,  Oil on Canvas    61cm x 46cm

Mirror Series, Untitled 2015,  Oil on Canvas    61cm x 46cm

Edel Morales

“Pájaro, pez, mujer, árbol: la noche, marzo-abril, variaciones

“Pájaro, pez, mujer, árbol: la noche, marzo-abril, variaciones

Eddy Maikel Sotomayor

Me imagino un arce

Me imagino un arce

Eddy Maikel is a young talented emerging artist born in Granma, Cuba. His depth and poetic interpretation of art drives his inspiration to create unique works that evoke the complexity of habitual images entailed in their surroundings to provide and intimate and in depth look into their intricate nature.

His works have been included as well as in private collections in New York, Canada, Italy and the Canadian Embassy in Haiti.  His latest body of works was presented during this years’ edition of Miami Art Basel Week.

 

 

Guillermo leon

Untitled, 2015    Acrylic on canvas        109cm x 109cm

Untitled, 2015    Acrylic on canvas        109cm x 109cm

 

 

 

Yulier P

Frontalidad, 2015Acrylic on canvas   197cmx147cm

Frontalidad, 2015Acrylic on canvas   197cmx147cm

Yulier lives and works in Havana. His works can be found painted on many walls around Havana, particularly in the neighborhoods of Vedado and Miramar. 

Rodriguez predominantly paints in the latter, on buildings’ decaying façades. Between the peeling paint and absent portions of concrete emerges a colorful and phantasmagorical world populated by figures of people, animals and spirits. His work appears politically ambiguous in its message, allowing the artist to produce without creating too much controversy, which would certainly have him in trouble with the local authorities. 

The artist creates to express exhilaration and fear, believing that we all share these basic human conditions. His works inspire a relationship between the decaying and old, and the contemporary and new, and also emphasizes the phenomenon of the typically romanticized depictions of Cuba abroad.

Sins of our Fathers

"La Tradición de Todas las Generaciones Muertas" by urban anthropologist, Joaquin Segura.

Joaquin lives and works in Mexico City, Mexico. His action, installation, intervention and photographic work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions in Mexico, USA, Europe and Asia. Some spaces that have featured his work include Sala de Arte Público Siqueiros, Museo de Arte Carrillo Gil, La Panaderia and Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo in Mexico City, along with El Museo del Barrio, Anthology Film Archives, White Box and apexart (New York, NY), LA><ART, MoLAA (Los Angeles, CA) Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia (Madrid, Spain),

National Center for Contemporary Art (Moscow, Russia), the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TX and the Museum of Contemporary Art of Denver, CO. His work has been widely reviewed & featured in local and international art publications & major newspapers such as Flash Art, Adbusters, Art Papers, Código, Art Nexus, Discipline, Celeste & The Washington Post, among many others.


In 2008/09, Segura was an artist-in-residence at the International Studio & Curatorial Program, New York, NY and at the 18th Street Arts Center, Santa Monica, CA. Between 2012 and 2015, he undertook artistic residencies and research stays at Hangar –Centre de Producció i Recerca d‘Arts Visuals (Barcelona, Spain), MeetFactory – International Center of Contemporary Art (Prague, Czech Republic), Impakt Foundation (Utrecht, Netherlands) and Casa Wabi (Oaxaca, Mexico). He’s a founding member and board advisor of SOMA, Mexico City.

The Art of Calligraphy

Golnaz Fathi's work is trans-cultural both in concept and in execution as it incorporates her extensive training in traditional Arabic calligraphy with graphic design, painting, and autobiography. She first discovered calligraphy while studying graphic design at Tehran’s Azad University, which she later left to train for six intensive years at the Calligraphy Association of Iran. She is the first woman to win an award for Ketabat (a genre of calligraphy) – but she soon tired of the discipline’s rigid rules and regulations. Fathi has turned the calligraphic art form on its head by skillfully transforming known language into form and composition in her paintings and works on paper. She is self-taught in painting, rooted in contemporary Iranian culture but citing international artists such as Robert Motherwell, Helen Frankenthaler, and Cai Guo-Qiang as deeply important to her aesthetic development. 

Every Breaking Wave (2), 2014 Acrylic & pen on canvas  55.4 x 66.3"

Every Breaking Wave (2), 2014 Acrylic & pen on canvas  55.4 x 66.3"

Since her mark-making originated with calligraphic study, there is a connection between verbal and visual language for Fathi. In her recent works, Fathi leaves expansive white space as a meditation on silence; she believes it gives the viewer room to pause or take a breath. Her use of color is also deliberate; she paints mostly with black because she believes it is the "complete" color, expressing everything essential to her.  Red is a symbol of energy; blue, the color of mosques; and yellow, representing new life, is the most recent addition to her palette. While the text in her paintings are not specific lines of poetry, Fathi says she is influenced by the medieval Persian poet, Hafez.  There is one verse in particular which she feels truly represents her personality which loosely translates into 'the world doesn't wait - life goes on'.  This is particularly poignant coming from an artist who recently decided to permanently relocate from her native Tehran to Paris.  Fathi's experiences are reflected in her paintings and the results are compelling and rich in graphic content and aesthetic intent. 

 

The Metropolitan Museum just acquired a Fathi last year, the British Museum has one, and the Brooklyn Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum are in the selection process.  She was nominated last year for the Jameel Prize, the V&A’s prize for international contemporary artist inspired by Islamic tradition. 

 

Ceramics and the Narco Culture

Eduardo Sarabia's work has often been the talk of art shows and fairs around the world. His unique ability to project people's stories and cultural myths into his work, has not only been refreshing but a new era for contemporary ceramic works. He has been know to use deferent mediums to create his art, as well as investing in a agave farm to be able to produce his own Tequilla.

A constant theme in Eduardo Sarabia’s work has been his interest in the relationship between his cultural roots and his American identity. Drawing inspiration from the unique and complex zone that divides Mexico from the United States, Sarabia stages intricate scenes infused with light romanticism, humor, and a sense of absurdity. From his liminal point of view, Sarabia exposes clichés about Mexican culture in order to question the imaginary borders demarcated by cultural stereotypes.

A constant theme in Eduardo Sarabia’s work has been his interest in the relationship between his cultural roots and his American identity. Drawing inspiration from the unique and complex zone that divides Mexico from the United States, Sarabia stages intricate scenes infused with light romanticism, humor, and a sense of absurdity. From his liminal point of view, Sarabia exposes clichés about Mexican culture in order to question the imaginary borders demarcated by cultural stereotypes.

 

 

Sarabia is best known for his series of hand-painted ceramic vessels that at first glance are indistinguishable from the blue-and-white Talavera vases that tourists buy as souvenirs. However, rather than traditional floral and geometric motifs, these vases boast modern hieroglyphs of Mexican and Norteño drug culture- marijuana leaves, guns, skulls, pin-up models, bottles of liquor, packs of cigarettes, and animals that symbolize specific drugs: the rooster, marijuana; the goat, heroin; and the parrot, cocaine. Sarabia makes reference not just to a physical border, but to a dividing line in the identity of one who feels at once familiar and distant from his or her cultural heritage.

 

His work has been shown at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Santa Monica Museum of Art, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, 2nd Moscow Biennale, Whitney Museum of American Art, the Istanbul Biennial, LA Louver, New Museum of Contemporary Art and The 51st Venice Biennale amongst others.

Arctic Love

Paola Pivi "Beautiful day", was one of my favorite pieces seen at Miami Art Basel. The sheer size, the beautiful detail and creativity behind her work, always leaves me gasping for more. I had seen them on print before along with some of her photography, but I had never had the pleasure of experiencing them in person.

A great investment in an established artist, that will continue producing some of the most interesting and socially current work.

Paola PIVI
"Beautiful day" 2015 
Urethane foam, plastic, feathers / Mousse uréthane, plastique, plumes 
h. 80 x l. 69 x w. 36 in (White head to blue toe bear) | h. 85 x l. 66 x w. 36 in (Blue head to white toe bear) / h. 203.2 x L. 175.3 x l. 91.4 cm | h. 215.9 x L. 167.6 x l. 91.4 cm
2 of a series of 3 unique versions 

Not Vital Or Is It?!

The Surreal World of Not Vital

STEEL, Sta(i)r(e), 2013   stainless steel 528 x 860 x 568 cm

STEEL, Sta(i)r(e), 2013   stainless steel 528 x 860 x 568 cm

Painter, sculptor, house builder, designer, explorer, philanthropist, bon vivant — the Swiss artist Not Vital sees the universe in his own singular and most elegant way.

STEEL HEAD Self-Portrait, 2013,       1/3 stainless steel 190 x 130 x 165 cm

STEEL HEAD Self-Portrait, 2013,       1/3 stainless steel 190 x 130 x 165 cm

His name is Not Vital. He was born in 1948 in eastern Switzerland. He has been around for years, quietly productive, secretly admired, but sometimes it takes a few decades for a culture to catch up with an artist. Environmental conditions have to be ready, ideas must come to fruition, and then, and only then, does the artist of that moment appear. So here in his ideal element at last is Not Vital: sculptor, painter, house builder, nomad, explorer, arranger of wonder, part-time genius of interior decoration, investor in miracles and officially the nicest man in contemporary art.

Not Vital was part of a disparate group of artists in New York in the 1980s that included Julian Schnabel, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring. He’s been collected by discerning art lovers all over the world.

STEEL Moon, 2009       stainless steel  ø 150 cm

STEEL Moon, 2009       stainless steel  ø 150 cm

Vital is part of no school or collective, yet he’s an individual who has moved with the times and has emerged as a singular thinker.

Vital's works frequently blur the boundaries between reality and the surreal.