Two years ago, artists Marianela Perelli and Pool Paolini debuted the show “Barbie, the Plastic Religion,” garnering press worldwide for Barbie and Ken doll versions of Biblical characters. Now, the show comes to La Luz de Jesus Gallery in Los Angeles with new additions. Through Dec. 31, the gallery shows the models, two new paintings, 12 Via Crucis altarpieces, a nativity scene, more than a dozen smaller gold leaf paintings, a Barbie Porsche 911 with Ken as Krishna, Jesus, and Buddha.
Jean-Michel Bihorel, a Paris-based digital artist, crafts bewildering illustrations of otherworldly figures and scenes. These creatures can have a natural make-up, like floral collections or delicate landscapes, or they seem entirely alien. Bihoral works as a CG supervisor for Mécanique Générale and is a co-founder and mentor of CreativeSeeds, a training school for aspiring animators.
Sam Octigan, an Australian artist, mixes the figurative and the abstract in his paintings. His subjects sometimes are enveloped in these abstractions and disparate objects. Otherwise, they comprise these figures, like memories or something more haunting. Even when the artist limits his palette to varying shades of gray, his works absorb and convey kineticism.
Inside an old warehouse of a paper strip manufacturing plant owned and formerly operated by her family, Chie Hitotsuyama crafts sculptures of wildlife, which are often life-size, in hermakeshift studio. By wetting, twisting, rolling, folding, and stacking paper, the artist compels an unlikely material out of newspaper. The ongoing effort is formally titled Hitotsuyama Studio, consisting of Hitotsuyama and the project’s creative director, Tomiji Tamai.
Min Liu, a Taiwan-born, Brooklyn-based animator/graphic designer, has posted dozens of red-hued animated GIFs in her Bloody Diary online. The ongoing project features hilarious animations, often full of cats (and several other beings) in surreal situations. The artist keeps her palette simple in this series, with reds, blacks, and negative space used for each creation.
Michael Dandley, an artist based in New Hampshire, crafts vibrant, transformative works out of the ordinary. At times, the artist is commenting on our impact on the natural world; elsewhere, he captures the engrossing beauty out of our sight. Though not all carry the surreal weight of his wilder images, all contain a certain serenity in the artist’s choices of palette and perspective.