The figurative works of Paul Reid revive the world of ancient Greek mythology, yet render new scenes through the artist’s contemporary vantage point. Though Reid’s education and understanding of form owes much to the masters of yesterday, his own cinematic style comes through in each of these scenes, feeling at once elegant and casual.
Myths are of particular interest to Chie Yoshii, whose work is inspired by the analogy between mythological tales and human psychology. The Los Angeles based Japanese artist’s lush paintings, previously featured here on our blog, depicts her subjects in color-saturated images that remove them from their historical identity and into a land of fancy: central figures of Ancient Greek art and literature rendered with a timeless beauty.
Minnesota based artist Alex Kuno best describes his work’s narratives as apocalyptic, satiric fairytales. His mixed media illustrations are as dark as they are whimsical, following deranged subjects, often children, rendered in acrylics, graphite, chalk, ink, ballpoint pens and crayons on pine boards. His early series, after which he named his website, calls this world the “The Miscreants of Tiny Town”, inhabited by lost orphans looking for a home in an endless, foreboding landscape that has as much personality as its characters. Though nightmarish, there’s also a sense of romance in his young subjects’ undying desire to eke out a better existence for themselves. A story about romance is at the heart of Kuno’s latest series debuting on Valentine’s Day at Dorothy Circus Gallery in Rome.
Have you ever noticed how everything goes quiet before a storm- the air seems still and calm, when suddenly a line of ominous clouds appear? It’s an intriguing phenomenon that people have recognized for centuries, and the inspiration behind Beau Stanton and Logan Hicks’s exhibition, “Calm Before the Storm”. Their show, which opened last Friday at New York City’s Highline Loft, borrows from nautical stories, both true and mythical, and themes in classical painting.
“Exquisite Corpse” is a term for a collaborative art game created by the Surrealists of the early 20th century. Seattle-based artist Redd Walitzki, known for her sensual laser-cut wood portraits, frequently plays the game with her sister and sometimes model. The game provided Walitzki with the basis for her latest series debuting Saturday at Modern Eden Gallery in San Francisco. “While beginning the series, I discovered a Greek-Roman myth about Chloris, the Goddess of Flowers and Spring. Wandering through the forest, Chloris stumbles upon the lifeless body of a woodland nymph. Saddened by the innocent creature’s fate, Chloris breathes new life into her, transforming the nymph’s body into a flower,” Walitzki says. “This tale was the perfect genesis for the beautiful, yet slightly macabre, pieces I wanted to create, and became the jumping off point for this group of paintings.”
Canadian artist Mark Heine is working on a series of oil paintings inspired by sirens, mythical maidens of the deep. Like his subjects, which are equally beautiful and haunting creatures, Heine’s paintings embody both beauty and feelings of unease. His work has inspired polarizing reactions; some viewers feeling discomfort, while leaving others entranced. Perhaps this feeling of discomfort can be attributed to Heine’s use of tension, as in the way his sirens just barely reach the surface to breathe, or linger above it. Although his premise is based on mythology, it is coupled with a heightened sense of realism.