Melancholic girls find themselves in moments of quiet drama in the works of British artist Craww and San Francisco based (and Hi-Fructose co-founder) Annie Owens. Where Craww’s pieces feature heroines with an almost spiritual-like quality, Owens’ black and white watercolors and sketches enhance the mystery of her subjects. Both artists will present new works in side by side solo exhibitions opening on October 29th at Antler Gallery in Portland.
Berlin-based artist Anna Lea Hucht creates drawings, watercolors and ceramics with solemn, and sometimes sinister undertones. The works have an aesthetic lightness which betrays their more disquieting subjects. Upon first look, Hucht’s domestic scenes are peaceful, tame. However, closer observation reveals individuals forlorn, lost among the trinkets and knickknacks that fill their homes. Hucht’s artworks are intriguing for their exacting detail that lends a specific personality and history to the people depicted. For example, Hucht offers clues about a woman seen behind a bookshelf containing a flask and beaded fringe lamp situated between ceramic vases and kitsch figurines.
Conrad Roset is a watercolor and ink artist based out of his studio in Barcelona, Spain. Roset, who was profoundly influenced at a young age by the enigmatic Expressionist, Egon Scheile, explores the sensuality and fragility of the feminine form. Roset’s new paintings are a continuation of his “Muses” project, in which the artist searches for beauty in the effects of the watercolor and black India ink washes.
Moscow based artist Dima Rebus paints subdued watercolors of urban life as envisioned by his subjects. Here, life is occupied by situations that are humorous, but also full of uncertainty and fear. In surreal, slightly unsettling scenes, we find young people sleeping in and forgetting their chores while newer works have more serious implications. Titles such as “Life in my city implies heavy consumption of carbohydrates” also imply the artist’s reservations and concerns about environmental issues.
Hi-Fructose’s own Annie Owens just released a new limited edition print of her “Yee Naaldlooshi (Skinwalker)” by Pressure Printing. At their blog, Pressure Printing writes, “When we saw Annie’s Skinwalker watercolor on Instagram almost a year ago, we were entranced. And we weren’t alone – when we re-grammed it it garnered more likes than anything we’d posted before, and still has more likes than anything we’ve posted since. Small wonder: the Navajo witch who can transform into any animal she chooses is a being both evil and mysterious, and Annie’s painting embodies that magic.”
Oakland based painter Max Kauffman (covered here) seeks to find peace in his soft, loose watercolors that reflect chaos. This journey often leads him to colorful, abstract structures like houses, which he calls his “sanctuaries”. In his artist statement, he says, “The world I portray is sometimes yours and mine and sometimes a more magical place – I call it future primitive. It is a potential path or maybe just a way to reconnect with more pure ideas of culture from our past. It is knowing empires crumble, but accepting the growth that emerges in the aftermath.” His latest series of paintings for “Beautiful Squalor”, now on view at Parlor Gallery in New Jersey, seems to find them in a state of visual disintegration.