medium /// contemporary




sandra anderlon

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Oh. Yes, yes, yes! I would happily pay a hefty admission fee to get into this insane jungle… clearly, I’d have to buy the week-long pass! So amazing. I’ve written about the large-scale collage work of Croatian artist Sandra Anderlon before – that was a party in a living room – this appears to a be a party in the jungle. Bunnies, chandeliers, hula dancers, and a rollercoaster … because every jungle obviously needs a rollercoaster. LOVE.

{Prints of this beauty are available in her shop}





brian donnelly

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Oh. My. Beautiful, sad, perfect, destroyed… all of that. This is the work of Toronto based artist Brian Donnelly. He has a solo show coming up later this week in Portland at Stephanie Chefas Projects. The show is titled “Nothing Lasts Forever” – appropriate – and this was a chunk of text that I found on the gallery’s site describing Brian’s process:

“Donnelly is well known for his aggressive approach to portraiture that involves defacing meticulously executed figures through the use of turpentine, hand sanitizer, and other materials. The resulting work is a study in deterioration, fortified by the philosophy that to take away from something can be just as provocative as to add to it.”

Agreed. I think I’d put the word “brave” in there somewhere too. I’m not sure I’d be able to pour turpentine over a perfect painting… although I bet it would be fun!





cheryl sorg

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Um, yes… this is my kind of graffiti! Wait, can I call it that? Street art? Tagging with tape? I don’t know what to call it other than GORGEOUS! I have been carefully stalking, I mean watching, the evolution of California based artist Cheryl Sorg for awhile {hence most of these photos coming from her Instagram feed}. I’ve seen her working on these beautiful, colorful designs made from carefully cut metallic tape, and then just the other day… gasp! There they were on forgotten corners, concrete columns, skateparks, and under bridges. And I repeat… gasp!

ps. these are just her “minis”. Yeah, there are also really BIG ones ♥ 





“defiance is my favorite motivator”

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When I emailed Toronto based artist/designer Amanda Happé to ask if she’d do the podcast, she wrote me back and said “Oooh, sounds scary – so yes!”  You gotta love that. Amanda does work that speaks to the designer in me. Perfect lines, beautiful text, gorgeous palettes… sort of not surprising to learn that she’s a graphic designer by day. She has such a refreshing/smart way of looking at creativity so I was thrilled to finally talk to her. You can listen right up there under all of that GRATITUDE, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

The first thing we talked about was, of course, her text-based paintings that I love oh so much:

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Ah! I already loved them but then to find out that she doesn’t plan them on the computer first {kinda what you’d expect a graphic designer to do}, it’s all done with old school tools like pencils, erasers, and compasses! Love. Oh, speaking of love, I forgot to mention that the piece directly above, “YOU ARE LOVED”, was a custom piece that Amanda made for one of my Land of Nod collections. Love. Again.

Alright, next… yes, Amanda was the artist that I chose to paint the cover of my first book, Creative Block! And what I didn’t realize for the longest time, until I held the book in my hands and really looked at it, she hand painted the “Creative Block” letters!? Look:

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So good! What a steady hand she must have. That’s me at the opening of my show at the Bedford Gallery in late 2014. This is when I saw the original painting {that she later gave me as gift!?} for the first time. And yes, I cried a tiny bit. Oh, and I had to show visual proof of this… the Korean version of Creative Block:

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Ha! I’m going to send one to Amanda, and I’m going to give one away today too… leave a comment below and I’ll draw one name before the next podcast goes up. Good luck!

Now, these are the “doodles” she mentioned. Her marker drawings that she does just to stay loose and to keep making when the big ideas are simmering in the background. Yeah, except that now Chronicle has asked her to make a book with these!? Hello amazing surprise project!

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See, just goes to show that doing a little something every day really can get you somewhere! Ok, I also had to show you this too… so the building her studio is in was going to be sold and all 5 artists working there would be kicked out… so Amanda bought the building and now manages it. Um, ah-mazing! Here’s a little peek at “Three of Wands” {a tarot card reference}:

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This is going to be my first stop for a visit next time I’m in Toronto! And finally, I had to include Amanda’s bio photo… her amazing pink/yellow door in her old apartment:

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Let’s hope whoever lives there now kept it that way. Thank you so much to Amanda for doing this with me, thanks to Saatchi Art for supporting the episode, and thank YOU for listening… there will be more art for your ear next weekend {and don’t forget to leave a comment if you want a chance at that Korean version of CB!}

Other links:

  1. Bruce Mau Design
  2. TAXI Advertising & Design
  3. Martha Rich
  4. “Home Movies” TV show




lauren matsumoto

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Oh. Yes! Painting, drawing, and collage coming together to create the weirdest, most wonderful treetops. This is the work of Brooklyn based artist Lauren Matsumoto… sigh… I’m not really sure what else to say other than roller skates, and cameras, and birds, oh my! ♥ Happy Friday.

{Thanks to Uprise Art for pointing me to Lauren’s work}





joey slaughter

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Work like this makes me wish I could build stuff. These are the colorful, abstract constructions of American artist Joey Slaughter. What do they mean? What are they all about? Here’s his description:

“My paintings and constructions investigate the “look” of digital information as it is transmitted around us, providing an overabundance of stimuli and therefore, distractions. I create abstract works that references conversations, usually a direct communication between two people. I wonder how a simple conversation is absorbed between people, how they’re connected, and what the conversational wavelengths would look like. The main idea is to create abstractions from conversations if you could see sound waves from analogue and digital devices passing through and around people. I imagine it to be very chaotic, yet beautiful.”

Now I wish I knew what my conversations looked like AND that I could build stuff.

{via Fresh Paint Magazine}





shawn huckins

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Lol’s meet beautifully painted classics. Yes. These are paintings! Everything – from the lace collars, to the romantic landscapes – and then of course there’s the perfect lettering… I rly cant even. This is a sneak peek of the latest work from American painter Shawn Huckins. I wrote about him yearrrrrrs ago, but with this amazing new show, titled “Everything is Hilarious and Nothing is Real”, about to open on May 5th at Modernism Inc in San Francisco, clearly I had to write again. If you want to see the full reveal of these big, perfect beauties up close and personal, you really should. The show runs from May 5 to June 25, 2016 and the opening reception is May 5th from 5:30- 8pm.

Good luck, Shawn! L8R

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dolly faibyshev

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Ok, that’s it… I’m packing a bag {sunglasses, sunhat, sunscreen} and heading to the desert! These gorgeous photographs are from a series titled, you guessed it, “Palm Springs” and they’re the work of New York based photographer Dolly Faibyshev. Here’s a snippet from her bio:

 “American born to Russian immigrants, the vicarious fantasy of America became ingrained in me from an early age. I experienced the relationship of my family to their adopted homeland until I learned to define those experiences in pictures. I am a New York based self-taught photographer exploring the meaning of the American dream in all of its forms.”

American dream in all its forms… ie., cactus mailbox 

{Several of these pieces are available on Uprise Art}





lee mckenna

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Oh, I can almost smell these… not the flowers… all of that beautiful old paper! Sigh. These collages by Australian artist Lee McKenna are like found paper treasures. Bits and pieces from various places all coming together to create a new visual story… and seriously, am I the only one who knows exactly what that old paper smells like!? Here, in Lee’s words, is a description of this work:

“My collages embrace the imperfection of old, used, discarded and damaged paper. These papers depict moments in time – often bearing marks and traces of a past life and the human hand. I ‘rescue’ these unwanted fragments, creating layers and building connections into some sort of new, elusive and unpredictable thing. The process is wholly tactile – nothing is digital. I like the restrictions that this creates… the hand-cutting and gluing down, the use of only original papers and ephemera. Elements are added or removed, or covered over and reworked. Ideas and narratives may emerge, but often a series is initiated through the acquisition of a certain type of raw material – an old photo album, a stash of old maps, a pile of old postcards.”

Love.

{Most of this work is available via Boom Gallery, Australia}





“who doesn’t like a dinosaur”

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These are drawings. DRAWINGS. Yep, layers and layers of graphite drawings, and who knows what else, all trapped perfectly in carefully poured resin. I finally get to ask LA based artist Brooks Salzwedel the how, what and why behind his ethereal work. Listen right up there under that dreamy forest, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

First of all, a few of my favorites. These are DRAWINGS:

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Oh my goodness. Note the yellowed tape… we talk about that a little later in the episode. Ok, these are the belt buckles that started things for Brooks:

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So cool, and selling out constantly. Not surprising… it’s gorgeous art for your pants!

I loved this next part… it was infectious to hear how excited he was about this residency in Alaska. Clearly “nature boy” was in his element. I found a bunch of great images from this trip in his Instagram feed:

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Ah, so beautiful. The image directly above is of Denali and was taken at 1am! Oh Alaskan nights. And that middle image is the “sideset” sunset he was talking about. I asked if any of those “sidesets” have made it into his work, and indeed they have! Here are a couple of examples:

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Sigh. Dreamy, mysterious, so beautifully done. Ok, now it’s time to look for hidden treasure. In quite a few of his pieces, Brooks will add little details… some with personal meaning, and some just for fun {because who doesn’t like a dinosaur}:

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Ah! I love those so much! The color, the details, the fog… all of it!

Now, as usual, the speed round led to a very interesting little tidbit. Guess who owns three of Brooks’ pieces… yep, the handsome and talented Jon Hamm:

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“Yeah, I own three of them. Jealous?” Yes. Yes, I am Mr.Draper. And lastly, one of my favorite things about talking to these artists … getting a peek into their studios:

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Gorgeous. I can almost smell the graphite and resin from here. Thank you so much to Brooks for downloading Skype just for us, thanks to Saatchi Art for supporting the episode, and as always a HUGE thanks to you for listening. There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. ArtCenter College of Design, LA
  2. Good Eye Gallery, LA
  3. Hammer Museum
  4. Doom Generation