Long Beach Museum of Art (LBMA) presents Masterworks: Defining A New Narrative opening October 23. Masterworks consists of 14 large-scale paintings by accomplished artists who have been charged with providing a singular work that could be considered pivotal in their careers. Coinciding with the exhibition opening, the museum will present its premiere event LBMA After Dark featuring live entertainment from 7pm-10pm. For more information please visitwww.lbma.org.
Korean-born, France-based artist Min Jung-Yeon recently created a new series of India ink paintings that meditate on moments of quiet stillness. The body of work came about during the artist’s move from Paris to the French countryside, a nostalgic setting that reminded her of her upbringing in her home country. Jung-Yeon’s paintings communicate through the subtle placement of suggestive elements rather than grandiose vistas. Textured and stylized, her geological formations and pine trees show up as dreamlike motifs, inviting the viewer to imagine an uninhabited, undisturbed paradise. Jung-Yeon will be showing with Galerie Maria Lund for the upcoming Young International Artists art fair, which takes place in Paris October 23 through 26.
Steven Spazuk paints with the flame of his candle like the hairs of a brush, charring paper and delicately sculpting the soot with feathers, paintbrushes and other tools. His work retains the undulating quality of smoke, but certain sections are carved out with a realist precision. In his latest series, Spazuk juxtaposes birds with destructive hardware: grenades, spray cans, stove burners. Titled “Ornithocide,” the series is a reaction to the heavy use of pesticides in North America and the consequential poisoning of insect-eating birds. “Since this industrial revolution, we are quite comfortable with the idea that we can poison insects to seemingly cleanse our homes and protect our crops,” Spazuk wrote in his artist statement. “We collectively and conveniently avoid thinking about the impacts of these suicidal choices. How can it make sense to lace our food and dwellings with poisons? How dare we impose these deadly choices on all other forms of life?”
Belgian artist Cindy Wright’s realist approach to her paintings is straightforward and traditional, but her subject matter imbues her work with an haunting, enigmatic ambiance. Wright is interested in death and decay. Her still lifes focus on single objects — one polished skull, a slab of fresh meat bleeding on the ground. Presented to us without context or an explanation, the morbid subjects exemplify the physicality of flesh. In this way, her work continues the Northern Renaissance tradition of vanitas paintings, still lifes meant to evoke the passage of time and one’s inevitable mortality.
Polish-born, German-based designer and illustrator Sebastian Onufszak has created graphics for dozens of big-name clients — from Karl Lagerfeld to Starbucks — but in his personal work, he pulls out all the stops. Onufszak’s chaotic drawings and paintings look as if the lid of his subconscious was taken off completely. Characters are piled together in an orgiastic cacophony of faces and limbs; every color of the rainbow is used liberally; loud, seemingly meaningless text is scrawled everywhere that it can fit. Calling his style dreamlike would be an understatement, as few of us have dreams quite this vivid.
A careful collector of found objects and (ethically sourced) animal bones, Jessica Joslin creates delicate sculptures that gracefully encase skeletal remains in baroque ornamentation. Using antique metals from chandeliers, samovars and other Victorian-era relics, Joslin gives the creatures whose bones she utilizes a dignified appearance even in death. Her work is both decorative and visceral, as her intricate craftsmanship belies her haunting subject matter. The artist recently created a new body of work for her solo show, “The Immortal Zoo,”opening October 24 at the non-profit gallery Firecat Projects in Chicago. Watch a teaser video and check out our preview of her latest work below.