The New Contemporary Art Magazine

Author: Nathan Spoor

Philadelphia based artist Drew Leshko (featured here on our blog) creates multi-layered paper and wood sculptures that beckon viewers to connect with a bit of nostalgia, while keeping one foot planted in the now. Leshko got his start as a studio assistant and fabricator for another sculptor just after finishing his schooling at West Chester University in his native Pennsylvania. Being strongly influenced by documentary photographers such as Walker Evans and Hilla Becher, Leshko creates sculptural commentaries that echo those filmmakers’ abilities to capture moments in time.
From her studio in Barcelona City, Spain, artist Peca meditates over a series of new oil paintings on panels. Having been an artist since childhood, Peca feels that a new world opened up to her recently when she began meditating. The artist feels that her works are self-portraits, and are ways for her to communicate the encrypted experiences that she experiences in life. Peca’s paintings feature strange spiritual entities- multi-eyed furry creatures made of 'star stuff' that bleed strawberry juice, and exhale galaxies. Join us as Peca gives Hi Fructose an exclusive peek into her thoughts about art and life, while sharing a few images of new paintings she has just finished for her debut solo exhibit at La Luz de Jesus gallery in Los Angeles.
Oil painter Vasilis Avramidis, first featured in Hi-Fructose Vol. 26, produces modern portraits of isolated landscapes, often depicting architecture in states of overgrowth. At the time of this interview, Avramidis confessed that he has settled in to his third studio location this year, a small studio in northern Greece. It is here that he has been putting the finishing touches on a new group of dramatically lit scenes based on memory and the overlooked. According to Avramidis, these paintings are as much about creating a familiar sense of place within a moment as they are about the absence of humans within the architecture. His latest works will be on view at The Contemporary London, located at Space W10 which opens on November 13th.
Jeremy Nichols is an artist hailing from Portland who creates graphite on paper works that he often refers to as “alien worlds.” In his youth, Nichols spent time traveling between upstate New York and Tokyo, which he says created a strong sense of displacement within him. He takes these memories of unsettled feelings to create worlds that feel otherworldly, using recognizable patterns and textures to create layered drawings of floating clusters of energy. Nichols wants his viewers to walk away questioning the beauty beyond their immediate world and take a closer look at the things that they see everyday - things they tend to overlook.
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.
Meghan Howland is an oil painter currently working from her studio in Portland, Maine. With a pragmatic approach to creating, Howland shares with Hi-Fructose that painting allows her to express herself in ways that words simply cannot. While painting, she reflects on human spirituality and nature by studying the relationship of humanity to other organisms. Join us now as we get an exclusive look into Meghan Howland’s latest paintings, as well as a few of her thoughts about them.
Hannah Stouffer is a Los Angeles based artist who describes herself as a highly curious individual. She learns by engaging with a topic and researching it obsessively. Stouffer finds her path of discovery, as well as self-discovery, to be an extremely important avenue for creativity, often achieving a meditative state while working. Her two-person show with Hilary White (recently interviewed here), titled "Ingress Egress" opens July 24th at Paradigm Gallery in Philadelphia, PA.
Multimedia artist Hilary White (covered here) creates vividly colorful sculptural works that delve into the symbolic, the altered, and the literal exploration of the "now" within the framework of time. White has an upcoming two-person exhibit with Hannah Stouffer, whom she originally found out about through social media. White found that Stouffer’s range of material and aesthetic to be something she immediately connected with, and set in motion the beginnings of what would eventually become the exhibit titled "Ingress Egress" which opens July 24th at Paradigm Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. 
Luke O’Sullivan (previously featured here) creates three dimensional art that brings the worlds of drawing and sculpture together. Inspired by dystopian science fiction films, O’Sullivan builds environments composed of peculiar buildings and subterranean lairs. Using textured façades as well as screen-printed surfaces, his latest series of works entitled “Cool Shelter" creates a fantastical scene of overworld and underworld labyrinths. The artist will present his latest series on Friday, July 24th at Paradigm Gallery in Philadelphia, PA. Hi-Fructose was invited to have a special exclusive preview into Luke O’Sullivan’s latest layered industrial landscapes.
Syd Bee is a Seattle-based painter that creates figurative paintings that often appear to exist in a dreamlike state. Working in oils, the artist employs a technique of creating a pastel-hued glow around her subjects. Bee enjoys the way the soft outer edges of the paintings feel optically; which enhances the mysterious effect produced by her oil paintings. Check out our interview with the artist after the jump, as she discusses her new work.
Mattias Adolfsson is an artist and illustrator working from his studio in Sigtuna, Sweden, just outside of the capital city of Stockholm. His path to being an illustrator took several turns, beginning with his interest in Mathematics and Architecture in his university days – eventually finding his rhythm as an illustrator after years of work doing 3D animations for the game industry. Infused thoroughly with a wonderful sense of humor and whimsy, Adolfsson’s work is a combination of hand-rendered ink drawings with watercolor accents that he meticulously produces in his sketchbooks. Adolfsson’s latest book, The Second In Line, has garnered the artist the prestigious Most Beautiful Swedish Book award by the Swedish Bonkkonst.
Mural artist and painter Jet Martinez (covered here) is using his art to carry on an ancient form of visual inspiration while providing a contemporary spin on folk art motifs. For Martinez, each painting is an opportunity to preserve heritage as well as build our living community through creativity and public interactions. Originally from Tuxpan, Veracruz, Mexico, Martinez attended the San Francisco Art Institute to pursue painting and printmaking. In his current body of work, the artist focuses on a technique of painting floral works inspired by Michoacán lacquered plates – objects crafted by generations of Mexican artisans that has made up a primary industry in the area for generations.
Stan Manoukian Grograou, a native of Paris, France, has always had quite the love for comics, science fiction, and monster movies. From this central passion, Stan has found a way to feed a lifetime fascination for drawing, painting and even sculpting his creatures. At age 15, Stan’s drive took him to the Ecole Estienne in Paris, where he enrolled to pursue becoming a comic book artist. It was here, in his teens that he became inspired by an illustrated edition of Mary Shelly’s Frankenstein. Stan was immediately turned on by the fact that as an artist it was possible to write comics as well as pay tribute to the classical artists. Stan takes time out give us an exclusive interview about his work, personal life and what inspires him as an artist - after the jump.
Nature and the creatures that inhabit its delicate world have always been a fascinating subject for Scott Musgrove (previously covered in HF Vol. 2, 8, 24 and online). With a big solo exhibition coming up at Jonathan LeVine Gallery in New York on May 16, we discovered that he has been quite busy, and not only with producing paintings and sculptures. He also recently became a father. As he put the finishing touches on his new work, Musgrove took a few moments to share his thoughts on parenthood, competitive bike racing, and, of course, the balancing act of family and making art. Read the exclusive interview below.
Artist Scott Teplin enjoys the minutiae, which is a good thing considering his intensely-detailed stacked room drawings require a dedicated curiosity to create, as well as to enjoy. Teplin describes his ink and watercolor works on paper as a way to categorize his curiosity about the unseen areas of life. We can trace Teplin’s creative path from the times he was sequestered in his room as a childhood punishment to his early days in New York, when he would try to draw his neighbors' apartments from memory. From these moments, his highly entertaining and elaborate “Rooms” series was born.
In her studio in Cardedeu, a small town near Barcelona, Spain, Cinta Vidal Agulló is busy creating complex acrylic paintings on wood panels that reflect how our external realities often do not reflect our internal natures. Vidal Agulló sees her work as a metaphor for the ways in which we shape our world – the impossibility of completely understanding those around us, yet the personal ability to navigate the maze of life that we all inhabit.
Miami-based painter Juan Travieso brings his work to life with vivid colors out of a sense of necessity. In his early days as a child in Cuba, his access to art supplies was limited because of the country's trade restrictions. As a result, Travieso has a deep appreciation for color and takes advantage of the hues available to him with his full-spectrum palette. His oil and acrylic paintings on canvas often feature geometric forms interacting with birds and other animals. Travieso uses this juxtaposition of realism and design to draw attention to the adverse effects human activity has had on nature. He views each painting as a chance to give voice to the powerless and endangered species on our planet. We spoke to Travieso about the ideas behind his paintings, as well as his artistic evolution.
Working out of her Austin studio, Leah Haney makes paintings that aspire to create an experience akin to entering a work of architecture. Her mixed-media works are produced with the thesis that painting, much like architecture and design, can stand alone and be experienced on a purely visual level — without piled-on metaphors or subtexts. Haney began her creative journey at UT Austin, yet found a life-changing experience in visiting Florence, Italy shortly on graduating. These days, the artist can be found mostly in her Austin studio complex, constantly rearranging her studio furniture to achieve the best personal environment for creating each piece. We spoke to her about the ways architecture informs her work, her creative process, and her passion for science fiction.
Mixed-media artist Angelika Arendt spends her time merging her two preferred creative interests: textile design and fine art. Working in sculpture and drawing out of her Berlin studio, Arendt creates organic forms that seem to grow through each tactile form and line. Arendt studied Textile Design at Reutlingen University, graduating from the State Academy of Fine Arts in Karlsruhe where she received the title of a master-class student. In the following interview, we discussed how she received the esteemed 2014 Berlin Hyp Prize, platforms for female artists, her latest works, and her current exhibition at Haus am Lützowplatz in Berlin.
Kyle Thompson has been making some intriguing progress with his enigmatic and somewhat haunted photographs (which we first debuted on Hi-Fructose last fall). When we last spoke with the self-taught artist, he explained that he found locations to shoot primarily by driving for hours on end, exploring abandoned houses and setting up lighting to shoot himself in obscure locations throughout the outskirts of his then-home-base of Illinois. Now, having relocated to Oregon, the young photographer has developed a new series of works for an upcoming solo exhibition at One Grand Gallery in Portland.
Bob Schneider is what you might call a multi-disciplinary talent. He spends the majority of his time making music but still manages to create fascinating collages between gigs on the tour bus or from his home studio in Austin, Texas. He began his career as a fine artist and successfully transitioned to an award-winning musician and songwriter. Yet throughout his music career, he has maintained his creative mojo by producing new art in different media (check out his blog for proof) as well as exhibiting in galleries and museums. Presently, Schneider is working on several new collage works and has recently entered the studio to record his next album, King Kong.
Today we bring you an exclusive preview of the latest collaborative works of Mars-1, Oliver Vernon and Damon Soule, collectively known as Furtherrr, in advance of their upcoming exhibition “Momentum." This exhibition, opening at Space Gallery in Denver, CO on November 7 (through December 2, 2014), will showcase the latest evolution of the artists’ collaborative and individual works.
Working from her Brooklyn, NY studio, artist Zaria Forman creates pastel landscapes inspired by the beauty and vastness of the sky and the sea. Hers is an art created for facilitating a deeper understanding of a world in crisis. She is fascinated by the constantly-changing nature of water and inspired by the challenges of her medium.
Sometimes life throws a wrench into our comfy plans and we’re faced with some big questions. As an artist, the question often is – do I quit and accept the defeat? Or, do I rise up triumphantly and make something beautiful to recapture this moment? Anthony Hurd is an artist that has learned to embrace the surprises in life as well as in his work, creating images that seem to arrive to us from some distant land. He depicts psychedelic landscapes of perilous beauty.
Ever the astute aesthete, Esao Andrews (previously covered in HF Vol. 8 and online) brings a renewed sense of clarity and purpose to his latest body of work. His new paintings will be featured at NYC's Jonathan LeVine Gallery from October 11 through November 8 for Andrews's upcoming solo show, "Epilogues." For this series, the artist embraced some of his signature motifs, bringing them back into the studio and furthering their growth. The ongoing narrative in his work, as Andrews tells us, needed a conclusion, a way to say farewell and move forward with his pursuits. This exhibition of painting provides him with just that: closure. In "Epilogues," we are treated to a visual feast of some of Andrews’s most well-known images as they would appear as aged, matured and weathered in his trademark tonality, creating transcendent moments of haunted familiarity.
Kyle Thompson is a young photographer on the rise. He began shooting at age 19 in his hometown of Chicago, Illinois, and in the last couple years has amassed a substantial body of work that shows a surprisingly adept and concise voice for such a young artist. This work, just released in a book titled Somewhere Else is comprised mostly of self-portraits taken in various abandoned locations found while on a road trip traveling the country.
Beautifully-rendered and atmospheric, Aron Wiesenfeld’s latest body of paintings reminds us how adept the artist is at creating scenes of suspenseful distinction. With the precedent of following the artist’s work set in Hi-Fructose Vol.14Vol. 22 and online, we were invited into his studio to gaze into Wiesenfeld’s progressively mysterious world. His latest suite of paintings, titled "Solstice" will be shown at Arcadia Contemporary in NYC from September 18 through October 3.
Robert Hardgrave (previously featured in HF Vol. 8) is an intriguing artist from the Northwest, basing his studio out of Seattle, WA. Hardgrave is a self-developed artist with a wide range of techniques under his belt. Previously known for his colorful free-form painting style, he has moved forward and has allowed his experimentations to dictate his progression into a new visual realm. Though he took a step away from pursuing showing his work in galleries and filling his calendar with a demanding schedule of exhibitions, he never ceased his creative stream of art creation. The artist gives us an exclusive peek into his studio, as he is currently working on a new technique of large-scale photocopy collage transfers. Hardgrave explains how this shift occurred and how it has renewed his passion for making new work.
Jana Brike is an intriguing communicator. For her upcoming solo exhibition “After the End of Time”, opening September 6 at FB69 Gallery in Munster, Germany, the artist produced a fascinating array of works created while staying in a cabin on a manor-house park by the Baltic Sea. These new paintings, she tells us in the following exclusive feature, are akin to a group of personal icons that relate more to a deep satori state of insight into one’s true nature.
Obtaining a view into Annie Owens’ world and work is a unique opportunity. Juggling life as a founder and editor of this fine publication with her artistic pursuits, Annie remains diligent in furthering her talents as a fine artist gifted in poignant visual scenarios. With a flair for watercolors at her disposal that has been present since childhood, Annie continues the expressive and delicate works that she has become known for in a new solo exhibit of works on June 16 at Copro Gallery entitled “Motherland”. Join us as we chat with Annie about her work, literary influences and a lifelong fascination with the personalities of houses.

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