On the section marked “Giant Drawing” on Sergio Barrale’s website, a factoid provides a sense of the hardship that goes into each portrait: “500-700 pencils died in the process of making these works.” Look into any corner of Sergio’s “faces,” and you’ll believe him.
Ghanaian artist Jeremiah Quarshie finds the inspiration for his paintings in his immediate environment. Living and working in Accra, the capital of Ghana, his highly realistic acrylic portraits depict models, typically ordinary women, in roles of beauty queens, businesswomen, and laborers alike. In his own words, the people in his portraits are characters representing the “foundations of society into pools of utter elegance”, 21st century workers and fictional women.
Carole A. Feuerman’s hyperrealistic sculptures of graceful human subjects like swimmers, divers, and dancers, featured here, are undeniably lifelike. But they are also magical in their dreamy state. Her sculptures also capture something that isn’t real in the tangible sense, and that is the soul and emotion of a living person. Some call it “super-realism”, but in Feuerman’s words: “My sculptures combine both reality and illusion- I’m idealizing the human form, its not life as it really is.”
During the last seven years, Ontario based artist Kit King has struggled with agoraphobia which is clinical anxiety in response to open spaces. As she explains, she lives her life “behind the same walls day in and day out” and worries she may never see her art outside the studio. Her emotions and relationship to spaces inform her works, featured here on our blog, and while highly technical, they represent the artist’s study of identity in the context of space.
Nigerian artist Oresegun Olumide goes beyond realism with his meticulously detailed oil paintings that could easily be mistaken for photographs. Notoriously difficult to capture in fine art, water plays a central role in his portraits: each figure is unclothed, allowing Olumide to explore the distinct texture and aesthetic quality of water-on-skin.
The grotesque miniatures of Korean sculptor Dongwook Lee are not for everyone, and yet his work stems from what he describes as a basic concern for all human beings. Previously featured here on our blog, the Seoul, Korea based artist’s figures are small-scale sculptural works, most measuring no more than 12″ inches high made of Polymer clay, that typically depict contorted human forms. He embodies the idea of physical “likeness” in his most recent sculptures, featuring humanoids with growths of pink-colored mushrooms and massive, heavy lumps of flesh that they are forced to carry.