medium /// contemporary




tasha lewis

tashalewis

Pearl encrusted, underwater beauties… so lovely in a strange, magical, ghostly mermaid kind of way. All of these haunting hand-sewn sculptures are from a series, titled “Full Fathom Five”, by New Jersey based artist Tasha Lewis. Here are her words about this project:

“With these works, I imagine the decay or “sea change” described by Ariel in Shakespeare’s The Tempest:

Full fathom five thy father lies;
Of his bones are coral made;
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.

In these portraits, time on the ocean floor has replaced their eyes with pearls and thread and they are everywhere encrusted with beads.”

Sigh. Happy Monday.





“cheesiness aside, art gave me purpose”

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Much like a mother who loves all of her children equally, I love all of my podcast episodes equally… but this one is really quite special. New Hampshire based painter Catherine Graffam is only 23 years old. Yeah, 23. She didn’t find art until she was a senior in high school, at a moment when she absolutely needed it. She began painting self portraits as soon as she discovered oil paint and hasn’t looked back. Whether she realized it at the time or not, she would use painting to document the huge life transition she was about to make. Catherine is a trans woman and her paintings, sometimes sad but always beautiful, have been evolving and developing right along with her. You can listen to our conversation right up there under Catherine and her pink hair, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

First up, a few of my favorites to get things started:

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Gorgeous. That final piece is titled “Panic”… doesn’t it look like a still from an old movie? Love it. So much.

Next, these are the paintings that broke my heart when she sent me that very sad, angst-filled email while she was still in college:

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See? Dark. Literally and figuratively.

Throughout this episode I kept telling Catherine how brave I think she is. Exhibit A, “I Guess I’m Stuck With Me”… the painting she included in a show at college depicting the beginning of her transition:

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Beautiful, vulnerable, and BRAVE – whether she’ll admit it or not. The other two pieces are the paintings she mentioned that are also titled after song lyrics: “Head High, Tears Dry”, followed by “Anthem For A 17 Year Old Me”.

Her self portraits are the base of her work, but recently Catherine’s been pushing herself to paint other people. Different faces, different angles, different stories. Here are a few of my favorites:

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Ok, so clearly she can paint other people too! Gorgeous.

It wouldn’t be right not to include these beauties… not only does she rock pink hair, look at all of the color and light that has made its way into her work:

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Love.

Speaking of love, this is Cat and her cat starring in, “Self Portrait as Madonna and Child”:

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Ha! So good. Thanks so much to Catherine for doing this interview with me, and being so vulnerable, honest, funny, and yes, brave. She’s only 23. TWENTY THREE. I am so excited to see what her future holds. Thanks to Saatchi Art for not only supporting this episode, but for also selling Catherine’s work. A big high five to audible.com for making my new book into an audio book! To preorder a copy for FREE just use my fancy link: audibletrial.com/JealousCurator  … and you know what comes next, thank you for listening. There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other Links:

  1. New Hampshire Institute of Art
  2. Emily Barletta episode
  3. Sean Beavers & Sydney Sparrow
  4. FKA Twigs
  5. “The Polygon Project”, Tasmania
  6. RISD
  7. “Gender Unbound” Show, September 24, Austin
  8. Saatchi Art to purchase Catherine’s work

 





ramon todo

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Books… filled with GLASS. Oh my word (no pun intended), I absolutely love this series by Tokyo-born, Dusseldorf-based artist Ramon Todo. Most recently he’s been slicing rocks in half, filling the gap with bluish-green glass, but these books. Oh, these books have my heart. Happy weekend.





jordan andrew carter

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I can’t seem to let a week go by without doing a portrait post… and then Queen Elizabeth shows up in the mix and there’s literally no way I can resist! This is the icon-filled, flat yet detailed, mixed media work of London based artist/illustrator Jordan Andrew Carter. Iris Apfel and her glasses caught my attention, and Liz sealed the deal!

ps. These women were calling my name, but Jordan’s portfolio also includes a whole bunch of boys from the world of Wes Anderson. So good. {some of his work is available via his shop}





natasha law

natashalaw

Oh. I have loved the sultry, elegant, feminine work of UK based artist Natasha Law for years. I wrote about her in early 2014 and just came across some of her new pieces… and here we are! Her color palettes are perfection, and I’ll be honest, this the sassiest use of glossy house paint I’ve ever seen. Love.

{bio photo via Vogue}





kate rohde

KateRohde

Bizarre, animal-covered vessels made with fluorescent resin. They look like crazy, fruit-flavored candy… that I kinda want to try {don’t worry, I won’t}. This is the work of Melbourne based artist Kate Rohde. All of these pieces are from an exhibition, titled “Ornament Crimes”, that opened last week at Karen Woodbury Gallery in Melbourne. It will be up until September 3rd, so pop over if you can. Here’s part of the description of this series from the gallery’s site:

Inspiration is drawn from the legacy of Baroque and Rococo art and design, a lavish aesthetic now near-abandoned in the name of good taste. Belonging to a former aristocratic order, art and design during these periods of embellishment signified decadence in excess. Rohde has long been attracted to excess and the spectacular, and ‘Ornament Crimes’ is unashamedly decorative with its hyper-colour, poised animal features, and entwined flowers and vines. The exhibition is labour intensive, each editioned work handmade and highly detailed.





clare szydlowski

ClareSzydlowski

“Wildfires” … that’s a scary word where I live, and I’m guessing that’s the same for California based artist Clare Szydlowski. These dramatic silkscreens are printed by hand using the CMYK process printing method… so many colorful layers that need to be aligned perfectly!? The imagery is digital collage of photos Clare took of new suburban developments merged with images of historical / current forest fires and dust storms. What isn’t digital though is her very hands-on technique:

“When I first started this body of work while an AIR at Kala Art Institute, I found a lot of people thought my prints were digital. My answer to this was to work with bigger dots to expose the little variations seen in hand pulled prints. I grew to LOVE these juicy rosettes and little imperfections… traces of human touch.”

Sigh. I love those juicy rosettes too.





“red bank red is from my yard”

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Clay from her yard, rocks from the side of the highway, and random bits of shale all turned into art supplies. Yeah, she MAKES HER OWN PAINT! A few years ago, at an art opening in Tennessee, I met Chattanooga based painter Amanda Brazier. We didn’t talk for long, but long enough for me to find out that she makes all of her own paint. Obviously I ran back to the hotel and looked her up… instant love. So here we are, years later, and I get an hour to talk to her about how she does what she does! We also talk about ice cream and running quite a bit. Brace yourself. You can listen right up there under Amanda’s freshly made paint, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

Let’s start at the beginning… the magical, natural beginning:

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Gah! Look at all of those perfect homemade tubes! And yes, there are quite a few Red Bank Red’s in there… straight from Amanda’s backyard. Amazing. And how perfect is it that she’s a trail runner and part-time high school cross country running coach!? She can gather samples while she’s out there ; )

She talked about how she’s able to make the different colors in her beautiful, quiet, natural palette. I wanted to know about this dreamy grey-ish blue:

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Oooh. I love them all!

Up next… this is where Amanda’s fascination with structures began, and how it evolved:

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Lovely.

And finally, the painted “weavings” that give me a headache just trying to figure out what should go where and when:

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Oh my goodness… so so so good!

Thank you so much to Amanda for telling us the secrets behind her beautiful, natural work; thanks to Saatchi Art for supporting this episode; high fives to audible.com for making my new book into an audio book… to preorder a copy of the audio book FOR FREE, along with a 30 day free trial at Audible, you can use my fancy link: audibletrial.com/JealousCurator  … and as always, thank you for listening. There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Mark Bradley-Shoup
  2. Freed Hardeman College
  3. Earth Pigments
  4. Natural Pigments
  5. Sandy Webster
  6. Cat planters by Beardbangs!

 





courtney wotherspoon

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YUM. The portfolio of Toronto based artist/illustrator Courtney Wotherspoon is filled with all sorts of wonderful things… portraits, quirky collections, gorgeous lettering… so I had a really hard time deciding which pieces I should write about. And then I found these delicious painted/drawn beauties. Yep, they were screaming my name on this very hot August day. I’ll take one of each, please! Happy weekend.

ps. congratulations to Courtney on becoming a mama for the second time, only two days ago… get that woman some ice cream STAT.





kaye blegvad

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Elegant ladies and delicate hands ~ sigh ~ this is the lovely work of London-born, Brooklyn-based artist/illustrator Kaye Blegvad. I suddenly feel like burning some incense and doing yoga all afternoon… nude. Hm. Maybe not.