Brisbane based Fintan Magee, featured on our blog, became a part of his hometown’s graffiti culture in his early teens, but his strong interest in classical painting made him change his creative output. After years of mural painting in and around his homeland, Magee slowly built his international resume, and his surrealist figurative murals can be found around the globe. The images in his large scale murals, paper, and canvas works depict our everyday being through photo-realistic details, juxtaposed with less detailed, sometimes expressive, elements. Covering the relationship between man and nature, his paintings often tell stories of struggle, loss, migration, conflict, with an individual and global state of mind. Magee’s upcoming solo show, “Water World”, which opens on December 4th at Blackwoods Gallery in Melbourne, revolves around the 2011 floods in Brisbane.
“We are leaving many vulnerable species and habitats frantic, facing disruptions and uncertain outcomes,” says Oakland based artist Crystal Morey. Featured on our blog, her ceramic sculptures of people wearing animal skins express her personal connection to nature- and our strained relationship to it. “In my work, I investigate these actions while also creating an evocative and mysterious narrative that shows our interdependence with the land and animals around us.” Morey’s upcoming exhibition “At the Edge of Time” at Antler Gallery in Portland will debut a new series of small eagle, bear, and deer-headed figure, portrayed completely absorbed in some secret conference.
Pennsylvania based photographer Peter Olson has found a unique way of presenting his photographic prints. Also a sculptor, he doesn’t stop at traditional photo paper- his photo-montages of people and places he’s visited are produced on a series of ceramics that he calls “Photo Ceramica”. Olson’s photos are encased on each piece, left by ink from prints that, when fired, burn away and leave a permanent image from the iron oxide in the ink. The form of a three-dimensional object, such as an urn or a plate, instantly makes his photo works more dynamic and complex.
There is an innate sensuality that exists in nature, and we are hard-wired to tune into it. First featured on our blog, Chinese painter Ling Jian’s paintings of beautiful women make observations about our natural impulses and attraction to beauty, even death. On why he paints women this way, the artist once said: “It may be because I feel there are so many pretty girls… But I don’t paint the so-called beautiful girls just because I want to paint them. It’s the embodiment of my creative desires. The contents may be my reaction to the social situation at the moment.” Jian calls them his “Sirens”, which recently debuted in this first US exhibition “Nature Chain”, on view at Klein Sun Gallery in New York.
During the Victorian era, it was almost impossible to see a beard-free male face. This uniquely Victorian trend has been a thing of fascination for Los Angeles based artist Aaron Smith, who makes these dapper bearded men the primary subjects of his oil paintings. Previously featured on our blog, Smith, who sports an impressive beard himself, borrows his subjects from vintage photographs which he invigorates with a trippy palette and impressionistic strokes. He relates them to “dandies”- men of the 18th and 19th centuries that paid particular attention to their appearance and manor.
Swiss street artists Pablo Togni and Christian Rebecchi aka NEVERCREW (featured on our blog) is well known for their giant, playful murals exploring the relationship between man and nature. Most depict realistic-looking animals, lots of whales, polar bears, and giant squids, which become figments of fantasy when painted on real world structures. The duo has been painting nonstop this year, and recently took a moment to send us photos from their busy summer traveling around the world.