They are “the girls behind the lace.” This is how Okinawa based painter Mao Hamaguchi describes the young subjects of her romantic paintings. Her Gothic Art inspired images are painted in a soft and delicate style, where we find Contemporary aristocratic girls bathing, peeking through cathedral gates and lace curtains. The symbol of lace is used throughout Hamaguchi’s art. Lace is a sensual fabric, often associated with intimacy and pleasure, however in Hamaguchi’s work, it emphasizes beauty and grace.
Gauntlet Gallery in San Francisco recently debuted their third annual 12 x 12 group show, in which each artist was given an identical surface to create the work of their choice. With over fifty artists in the show, the exhibition featured a wide variety of works in different media. From David Cooley’s kaleidoscopic, highly textured works to Dan-Ah Kim’s sunset-hued illustrations, the show offers a large range of aesthetics. Check out some of the works below, or see the show in person through April 18.
The title of DAX Gallery’s upcoming exhibition “Undeniable” refers to the undeniable bond between its artists- Odd Nerdrum, Rebecca Campbell, F. Scott Hess, Luke Hillestad, David Molesky, Michael Harnish, Julio Labra, Averi Endow, and Corbin Ferguson. Whether directly or indirectly, each has influenced the other at some point during their careers. For instance, Norwegian figurative painter Odd Nerdum mentored Luke Hillestad and David Molesky separately, during their stays in Europe. Often, the subjects of each artist appear from another time and place, as in Rebecca Campbell’s ethereal Ophelia or Luke Hillestad’s Ancient Greek-inspired figures.
Montreal-based artist Jason Botkin recently returned from Cancun, Mexico, where he created a series of murals and installations for the second annual Festival Internacional de Arte Publico, a week of art making that took place at the end of February. In collaboration with Jeremy Shantz, Botkin created a series of humorous, mask-like pieces with movable features that viewers could reconfigure a la Mr. Potato Head. Public engagement and collaboration are at the heart of Botkin’s whimsical work. He is a co-founder of the collective En Masse, which invites its members to co-create sprawling monochromatic murals. Though Botkin’s painting style has an instantly recognizable palette and texture, he has no problem adapting his aesthetic to work with that of other artists. Today we take a look at his pieces from FIAP as well as some other recent work.
While we might not look back at pennies when they accidentally fall out of our pockets, Robert Wechsler invites his viewers to see them in a new light in his geometric coin sculptures. Using a die cutter for his larger pieces and a jeweler’s handsaw for his smaller ones, he transforms spare change into multifaceted constructions that he meticulously puts together by hand. Cutting notches in each coin, he attaches them to build up complex patterns. Wechsler has a natural eye for geometry and creates the shapes without a preplanned model. His work is highly detailed oriented, and he has been known to take apart sculptures when a single coin is found facing the wrong way. The resulting forms resemble molecular structures or perhaps geological formations. They re-contextualize the coins entirely.
Sam Jinks’s sculptures (featured in HF Vol. 27) are eerily realistic. Using resin, silicone, pigment, and human hair, the Australian artist builds uncanny human likenesses with all their imperfections laid bare. Jinks’s work is highly detailed and includes elements like chipped fingernails, wrinkles, and protruding bones. His protagonists, many of whom have an emaciated appearance, appear to have survived many trials and tribulations. Though Jinks doesn’t present us with a narrative to parse through, his characters’ nude bodies are like roadmaps to their life journeys. The artist has a solo show coming up at Mark Straus Gallery in New York on March 29 featuring new and archival work. Check out a preview below.