When I started trying to promote my own artwork online I kept coming across other people's art that amazed or compelled me in one way or another. This blog has been a way for me to practice thinking and writing about art, as well as learning more about my peers and all the incredible art that is being made out there.

Search for an Artist on this blog (or cut and paste from the list at the bottom of this page)

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kirsten Everberg

"Cinema, (LA Theater)", 2010, Oil and enamel on panel, 72 x 96 in.

"Cinema, Balcony (LA Theater)", 2010, Oil and enamel on canvas over panel, 72 x 60 in.

"Bar", 2003, Oil and enamel on canvas over panel

"Church, Haut du Lievre, Nancy, 2005, Oil and enamel on canvas over panel, 72 x 108 in.  

"The Armory, NY (Field and Staff Room)", 2010, Aquatint, etching on Somerset paper 300gr, 17.9 x 20.8 in.

I was recently nosing around some LA area gallery websites and stumbled across these images which immediately grabbed my attention. Probably because I recently did some theater pieces myself and have been thinking along the lines of ornate interiors. Most of her recent work has been in the form of black and white aquatint etchings, an under-represented media in contemporary art if ever there was one. But for me it's the paintings that best convey the loose energy of her work. Viewing art on the internet is not a very fair process and one has to extrapolate a lot based on the experience of viewing art in real life. Printmaking is especially hard to appreciate via electronic media. But whether it's etching or painting she manages to convey a sense of the fussy detail, the cluttered energy and baroque furnishings of a bygone area with a very modern gestural simplicity. She uses the same approach to depict more contemporary spaces as well, allowing rough imperfect lines and hastily blocked in forms of color to give the cleaner lines a rough vitality. Either way I find her work mesmerizing and inspiring. Maybe I'll even get a chance to see it in person when I go down that way this July.
You can view more at her gallery's website: www.1301pe.com
There's a few images available on artnet.com

Thursday, May 26, 2011

John Brosio - Fatherless Bride

A quick note here:
Shortly after my last post Mr. Brosio sent me an updated version of the first painting in that post. Apparently he had not been quite satisfied with the results. He felt it needed a little something extra in the background to tie all together a bit more and give it a "what the **** is going on kind of flavor" if I may quote his email. I think he'd be curious to know what others think of the change. So take a look, compare and send me your thoughts!
(you can click on either image to view them somewhat larger)

"Fatherless Bride" (with ghosts!)
Earlier version

His website, by the way, is www.johnbrosio.com

John Brosio 3

"Fatherless Bride"  2010

"Queen of Suburbia (study)"  2010

"String Theory"  10" x 12"  2002
"Sleepy Head 2"  36" x 48"  2009

"Panhandle Commute 2"  36" x 48"  2003
This will be the third time I've posted the work of John Brosio. You can see the earlier posts here (March 2010) and here (November 2008). Obviously I'm a fan, and my excuse this time around is that he posted some new work on his website (www.johnbrosio.com). Well actually some of it is older but it was new to me and if his work is new to you, spend some time browsing through a great collection. His mastery of traditional realism is one thing, but it's his sly and often dark humor that wins me over. I've included a variety of work here including the first 2 pieces which are not posted anywhere else as far as I know. They were sent with email announcements over the course of the last year. And he sent fairly large files, so I encourage you to click on those 2 images to get a really good look at the details. The next 2 pieces are from his new page on his website, "Critters". And the last piece is from his Iconic and prolific series of tornado paintings which is only all too appropriate, unfortunately given recent events.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Peter Ravn

COUCH. 50x50 cm. Oil on canvas. 2011.

DIALOG. 110x120cm. Oil on canvas. 2010.

LUGGAGE. 50x50 cm. Oil on canvas. 2010.

UM. 160x180 cm. Oil on canvas. 2009.

CARDINAL ELEVATION. 100x150cm. Oil on canvas. 2010.

Peter Ravn is a Danish artist who took to painting after some success in the music, design, and video industries during the 80s and 90s. There is something of the music video aesthetic in his work and the design sense is obvious. Working with what you know is always a good idea and it pays off here with images that can be both humorous and coldly ironic. His ubiquitous male professional with polished shoes, white collared shirt and jacket makes for an interesting protagonist. Whether collapsed upon the therapist's couch or huddled under an emergency blanket, he is no longer the lord of all he surveyed in the 20th century, but the realization may be late in coming. Technically the paintings are executed with an almost casual dash and confidence that works better in some instances than others. But no matter, it clearly indicates a strong and inherent knack for the medium. It will be interesting to see where he takes his hard-luck hero next. You can see more of his work on his website: peterravn.com

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Jeremy Hush

"Droning Glow" 2011

"Nettled" 2011

"The sigh" 2011

"Vexed" 2011

"Wisdom and Faulty Design" 2010
Jeremy Hush is a fairly young artist with one of those names so apropos that we can only hope it's real. He creates small exquisite illustrations in ball point pen and watercolor. I know of only one other artist using ball point pen (Caitlin Hackett whose work is not completely dissimilar). It's an unlikely medium that I myself prefer for sketching. Anyway, his delicate images capture a certain mood, a sort of wounded fantasy world in which life itself seems to be unraveling and unwinding, bound to cease it's awkward motions at any moment. It has more than a hint of the Goth aesthetic, but in it's more subtle and nuanced forms, harking back to the detailed and sometimes dark children's illustrators of the 19th century illustration. The delicacy and sensitivity of the work makes an interesting and ironic contrast to the personal snapshots on his flickr page where we can witness the artist's love for heavy metal music, automatic weapons and trespassing (In addition to the art of course). Keep keepin' it real Mr. Hush. And keep busy. I'll look forward to see what happens the next time your adventuring takes you inside.

You can also follow his progress on his blog: hushillustration.blogspot.com

Monday, May 9, 2011

Gabrielle Bakker

"May Morning II"  oil on linen  32" x 30"  2010

"Studio"  oil on panel  60" x 52.5"  2005
"Drunk Minotaur"  oil and 22k gold leaf on panel  27" x 27"  2011

"Geisha Icon"  oil and 22k gold leaf on panel  13.3" x 12"  2009

"Leda"  oil on linen  50" x 42"  2011

Gabrielle Bakker gathers in a mélange of historical styles and subject matters, each clearly and easily recognizable, but she manages to integrate and own them beautifully. There's some classical mythology and overt references to Picasso (an avid interpreter of greek myths himself) plus 18th and 19th century Japanese imagery, which had such tremendous influence upon the post-impressionists (and others). Her painting and composition have a beautifully crafted, almost sculpted feel that reminds me of the art deco painter Tamara de Lempicka. All of this collecting of historical references plays well into questions regarding their role in contemporary painting, and the validity of representation and traditional media. I think she makes a tremendous argument in favor of building upon the past, not merely breaking from it in search of the new, a tendency that has led to an almost maniacal fracturing in the arts over the last 60 years or so. Tradition and innovation are still viable partners as this talented artist aptly demonstrates.
Check out her website: www.gabriellebakker.com

And if you happen to be in the Seattle area this month you can see her work, a retrospective of the last decade at Davidson Galleries.

thanks to Michael McDevitt for the heads up

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Theo Ellsworth

First Contact

Monster the Musical

Sea Monsters Love Boats
Fast Asleep on the Fish's Back

A Quiet Monster

I've been paying too much attention to painterly painter types lately so it's time to mix it up a little. Theo Ellsworth's work is grounded in the comics aesthetic. In fact he does comics, in addition to stand alone framed art pieces. He's probably better known for the comics work anyway, having a 15 page story selected by Neil Gaiman for the 2010 issue of Best American Comics. But hey, it's all art. What makes his work stand out is a little difficult to pin down. His drawing style seems to draw from a grab bag of traditional historic sources in addition to the more obvious modern ones. To my eye there are suggestions of Mayan, Aztec, Celtic and Old Norse imagery. All of this comes about intuitively of course and is not being overtly referenced. But it all comes together through Mr. Ellsworth's unique and humorous surrealism, replete with spacemen, monsters and other curious creations.
Check out his website: thoughtcloudfactory.com
Follow his blog: theoellsworth.blogspot.com
or browse through his Flickr page.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Carolyn Pyfrom

"Jenny By The Door"  34" x 36"  oil on linen 2006

"Maestro and Model"  66" x 30"  oil on linen  2010

"Plumb Line"  50" x 28"  oil on linen  2010

"Self With Peter"  30" x 24"  oil on linen  2008

"You Also Are Psyche"  40" x 40"  oil on linen  2008
Carolyn Pyfrom is an academically oriented painter, who well understands the lessons of drawing, composition and subtle value shifts in color to create luminous compelling canvases. Her occasional use of paintings within the painting suggests an ironic concession to the limitations of rendering three dimension in two. She is no photo realist playing tricks with illusion to wow the viewer. She simply uses the painting within the painting as a way divide up the surface and subjects of the painting in new and novel ways. At times it lends an interesting psychological distance to the figures, but the figures are ultimately secondary anyway. Composition is the central theme as she looks around the studio or room in which she's working for new ways to reorganize the lines and light that surround her.
You can see more work on here website at: www.carolynpyfrom.com