German artist Pierre Schmidt, also known as “Drømsjel” (previously covered here), creates mind-bending imagery that combines illustration and collage techniques. His works are partly inspired by German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche, who challenged ideas about individuality and the meaning of our existence. Other influences have included digital artists such as Lauren Albert, Christophe Remy, and Melissa Murillo. In his latest works, Drømsjel challenges Nietzsche’s concepts through his manipulation of the form, which drips and doubles beyond recognition.
Tomorrow night, Chet Zar’s “The Demon Show” and Jasmine Worth’s “Dark Night of the Soul” side by side solo shows are opening at Last Rites Gallery in NYC. Both shows will be on view May 23rd through July 3rd, 2015. In “Dark Night of the Soul”, Worth explores the act of transformation through suffering. Inspired by both the occult and female experience, the artist utilizes meticulous layering techniques to craft scenes from fairytales gone awry, swirling seamlessly between the sweet and the morbid. With “The Demon Show,” Zar’s subject matter is surreal and darkly humorous yet genuine in its existence, often revealing humankind at its barest form.
Greg ‘Craola’ Simkin’s childhood memories have long played an important role and inspiration for his artwork. The playfulness of being a child comes together with creatures of the natural world in his mythical landscapes. He calls this world “the Outside”, a place where the impossible becomes possible, and a cast of anthropomorphized animals set out on bizarre adventures. Simkins expands on this world in his upcoming solo exhibition, “Where Am I?” at KP Project/MKG, opening Saturday.
One could say that Surrealism as a movement is a way for artists to seek distraction from the mundane and engage in fantasy. On his current exhibition at AFA Gallery, painter Daniel Merriam shares, “Although I may be guilty of a little denial, it’s enabled me to go to the edge and back, which is kind of where people expect an artist to go.” Spanning over 20 new watercolor paintings, titled “Now You See Me: The Art of Escapism”, he allows himself to overcome the limitations of reality in this latest series.
Trippy magicians and warriors find themselves in an unnamed land with black skies in Martin Ontiveros’ current exhibition, “Strange and Unlovely” at Pony Club Gallery. Based in Portland, the artist and self-described metal-head (HF Collected Edition 3) has created a world of bizarre denizens throughout his painting career. Featuring new ink illustrations, mainly monochromatic, the show indulges in their fantastic strangeness. Check out more photos from the show after the jump!
Jenny Morgan’s (HF Vol. 21) latest series is set to debut on May 14th at Driscoll Babcock. “All We Have Is Now” features themes of life, death, and rebirth, represented in paintings of her vibrantly colored figures. It is a continuation of her ongoing concept, centered around the cycle of life and spirituality. Here, this is combined with the morose of death, as in her painting “Skeleton Woman” where a nude mingles with a skeleton. The image could almost be read like a ying-yang, where the weightless pose of the girl is juxtaposed with the heaviness of the skeleton, yet it does not crush her. Overall, Morgan’s art is like a balancing act between polar opposites of both theme and style choices.