With every new body of work that Tara McPherson (HF Collected Edition 3) creates, there is a common theme and evolution to the next. Her upcoming show at Dorothy Circus gallery, “I Know It By Heart,” carries on her exploration of ethereal imagery – portraits of young girls caught in a magical moment, but not without also recognizing the negative forces in nature. These include allusions to disease, destruction, and deterioration. There is a balance between what is visually beautiful and, possibly, emotionally discomforting for the artist.
Currently living in Colombia, John Barrios (previously covered here) portrays a surreal world rich with color and detail in his oil paintings. He strips down this world in his haunting black and white mixed media drawings. Barrios’ drawings, a combination of Graph Gear 500 mechanical pencil and watercolor, look similar to the under layers of his painted works. Their soft shading and light values reflect on his fascination with the subtleties of light. See more after the jump.
There is an infinite complexity to nature. From sea shells, to the Milky Way galaxy, to the structure of human lungs, there are patterns that exist in everything around us. London based collaborators Kai & Sunny (previously featured here) have always been drawn towards such images created by nature. Opening Saturday, they will exhibit six new ballpoint pen pieces in “The Matter of Time” at 886 Geary Gallery in San Francisco. A more vibrant palette is applied in their new drawings, alongside hand-pulled monochromatic screen prints on copper and paper. Their works magnify and stylize the things that are plainly visible to us but often overlooked. Here, this would be the turn of the tides, represented in energetic, abstract pieces.
England based artist Dylan Andrews uses light and shadow to portray emotion in his drawings. His monochromatic charcoal portraits build up to a dramatic intensity that is almost surreal. Owing to the drama and atmosphere in his pieces is the use of black and white high contrast of tones. Pattern and texture is another aspect of the work that he uses to explore the emotional possibilities. The shadows on his young subjects’ extend the reality of the image beyond the page, a reflection from an object we cannot see.
Levi van Levuw cultivates a sense of mystery and foreboding with his chiaroscuro charcoal drawings, which feature inanimate objects scattered in empty rooms that appear devoid of a human presence. Whether drawing palm trees, bookshelves, drawers, or stairs, Levuw’s presentation of these items is highly stylized and architectural. He appears interested in studying their formal qualities and creating new patterns with objects his viewers would normally consider mundane.
Though Athens, Greece-based artist Constantine Lianos creates mostly figurative work, he insists that it in no way is meant to be realistic. Instead, his dark, monochromatic drawings and paintings are created entirely from his imagination. “The painting process is for me the ultimate introspection process, where the rational and the emotional are inseparable, where the method meets the random,” writes Lianos in his statement. Sometimes humorous and sometimes disturbing, each character in his work appears preoccupied with an internal struggle that Lianos illustrates in unexpected ways.