Carlos Tardez has a talent for portraiture across two- and three-dimensional forms. Yet, it’s in his sculptures that the surreal nature of his works becomes visceral, whether evoking laughter, intrigue, or both. These small figures are often paired with normal-sized, found objects. These interactions create strange narratives.
Kevin Francis Gray’s malformed and surreal figures, rendered in varieties of marble and fiberglass, exhibit both a more honest, visceral reflection of humankind in their incompleteness. The Ireland-born, London-based sculptor creates work that in its seemingly soft form, defies its stubborn material. Shown both against interior and exterior backdrops, that quality plays with its surrounding environment.
The hulking sculptures of Elisabeth Higgins O’Connor don’t hide their aggregative nature, packed with wood, quilting pins, styrofoam, bedsheets, nails, foam, and other unlikely materials. The Sacramento-based artist blends mythology and contemporary commentary in the works. The artist has cited Francisco Goya as an influence in her works, as well as “the ingenuity and creativity of shanty town,” according to a KQED interview.
Cuban artist Alexi Torres crafts oil paintings that appear as though they’re woven, tethering both contemporary iconography and human subjects. In the artist’s portraits, the effect hints at the complexity of these figures; in his broader, more cultural works, the style hints at how so much of our interests and icons are tethered. His process is multi-layered, intricately taking the familiar and adding his “knitted” sensibility.
The intimate paintings of London-based artist Emma Hopkins carry both vulnerability and absorbing detail, as rendered in oil in the artist’s visceral style. Each of the works carry a story, often directly depicting a subject Hopkins knows. “When I work with people I develop a body of work based on the individuals themselves and the ideas that come from the experience of working with them,” the artist says. The artist was last featured on HiFructose.com here.
Colombia-born illustrator Daniela Gallego crafts intimate, whimsical illustrations that move between the fantastic and the deeply human. She has created pieces for children’s books and commercial clients while crafting her own gallery work. For effect, the artist often uses reflections and shadows to add a wondrous quality to her images.