Puerto Rican artist Cristina Toro creates intricate acrylic paintings and collages that often explore both the interior and our connections to the outside world. Her works appear as both surreal and personal revelations, as the artist often sets out with no final image in mind. In a new show at LaCa Projects in Charlotte, N.C., these ideas take on grand forms in works like the enormous “Without Exception Everything is Reflected in this Mirror,” at 12 feet by 9 feet. The piece itself took her more than a year to complete.
French artist Tof Vanmarque crafts surreal worlds in his acrylic paintings. These fictional characters exist in a world devoid of physics, muted clothing, and in many cases, body parts. The artist’s work tends to exist against scenic, yet rundown backdrops, possibly victim to the insane characters that inhabit them.
Amy Guidry, a North Carolina-born, Louisiana-based artist, crafts surreal acrylic works on canvas that often tie the human psyche to the natural world. Series like “In Our Veins” moves into the concepts of survival, life and death, and destruction. It’s in these works that Guidry seems to highlight the inherent beauty of flora and fauna and the strangeness buried within humanity.
Matt Gordon is a mixed-media artist based in Plymouth, Mich., where he crafts both surreal acrylic paintings and graphite drawings. In these images, skeleton characters, bat-human hybrids, and other creatures interact and frolic in different scenarios. Or, as the artist puts it, his works in both mediums “take place in the same dreamy world of happier times.”
“Gravities” is certainly an apt moniker for the works of Cinta Vidal, whose acrylic images on wood offer something to ingest at every angle. Take “Together Alone,” above, a collection of narratives that are at once harmonious and disparate. The artist has said she tries “to attach importance to every point of view, and to create more than only one outstanding scene in each painting.” Vidal was featured in Hi-Fructose Vol. 36, and she can be found on Instagram here.
Japanese artist Shintaro Ohata places sculptures in front of paintings to create wondrous scenes inspired by childhood. They play out every day encounters between his child subjects, their pets and imaginary friends with the world around them. While their lives may seem ordinary for the most part, Ohata’s playful and impressionistic style make them feel like fantasies. They are sculpted from polystyrene which are then painted to perfectly match their traditional 2D acrylic backgrounds.