Matt Linares “The Second Key Master”
Tattooed doves and pygmy giraffes, singing harpies and suited wolverines are now on display at Portland’s Antler Gallery as part of “Unnatural Histories IV.” The exhibition, as previously reported earlier this month, is the fourth edition of a major group show featuring work by 27 artists who merge human with animal to create fantastic creatures. Some are whimsical like Redd Walitzki’s “Pygmy Mountain Giraffe,” which the artist describes as being particularly fond of “salt water taffy left behind by careless tourists” and Morgaine Faye’s “Wadjet,” the Egyptian god and protector of kings and women in childbirth. To accompany her single rainbow winged bird, Faye wrote a poem detailing the omnipresence of her imagined “Protector of the Pharaohs.”
Josh Keyes (HF Vol 12 cover artist) and Brin Levinson (covered here) both illustrate an affinity for animals in their paintings. Working in acrylic and oil respectively, their collective exhibition “Reclamation of Nowhere”, which opens tomorrow at Antler Gallery in Portland, illustrates desolate environments from the animal’s point of view. Josh Keyes chose to convey feelings of liberation and reclamation in his new series. “It is suggesting surrender, or letting go, or loosening of the psychological framework and preconceptions that can sometimes hold and restrain our imagination and natural impulses,” he explains. Check out our preview after the jump.
Growing up in rural Colorado, Oregon based artist David Rice forged a special connection with his environment, which he develops in his colorful illustrations. His works focus on themes of nature through figurative portrayals of animals. Rice forges a link between the natural world and what is man-made in his current exhibit, “Two Creeks” at Antler Gallery, which is showing alongside Syd Bee’s “In My Bones”. In a new series of nine acrylic on wood panel paintings, Rice portrays wild animals with unnatural elements. A recurring element is fabric, which appears as clothing fashioned as cloaks that the animals wear, draped over their backs like blankets, or in more subtle forms.
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.”
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.
Antler Gallery in Portland has an upcoming group show featuring three distinct talents: Heiko Müller (HF Vol. 33), Lisa Ericson, and John Casey. Opening March 26, “Habitats” allows the three artists to demonstrate new directions in their personal styles. In his new paintings, Müller invites nature imagery to mingle with mythological elements and abstract designs. Casey presents a new series of bold, colorful sculptures and paintings, which greatly contrast with the tightly executed graphite work for which he was formerly known. Ericson’s paintings of mouse-butterfly hybrids are humorous, endearing, and technically skilled. One might be surprised to learn that “Habitat” is Ericson’s first gallery show, but her work matches that of the other two more experienced artists in caliber.