medium /// paper




hugo alonso

Ok, I’m a little bit scared… I think the call might be coming from inside the house! Eeeee! Luckily, nothing is going to jump out of the darkness because these are not movie stills, they’re part of a series of stunning airbrush on paper paintings. Really. These cinematic gems are the work of Spanish painter {yes, I need to reiterate that these are paintings} Hugo Alonso. Here are a few words from the Galerie Youn site about Hugo’s work:

… Alonso lets us be seduced by the uncertain, in his own words, by a “hole behind a painting that one can approach so as to peer at that which seems far off to us in a strange manner, with a disturbing familiarity”. Hugo Alonso does not just work on deconstructing the processes of accessing painting but also the logic of the cinema and its elements ‘setting, plan, set dressing’ which he reorganizes in order to show new links to fiction, to a certain extent calling up the phantasmagorical.

Disturbing familiarity. YES.

{via Galerie Youn}





christopher burk

Hm, I don’t know how to write this post without sounding like a trouble-maker. Oh well, here it goes … these lovely nighttime paintings on paper remind me of sneaking out in high school… sorry, Mom. Ahh, the fresh summer night air, crickets chirping, and a dash of small town teenage rebellion thrown in for good measure. I’m not entirely sure this is what American artist Christopher Burk meant to conjure up with this series, but that’s exactly where my mind went when I saw his work. {ps. if you’re a teenager, please don’t sneak out!}





liana jegers

Sigh… these lovely drawings make me exhale. Perfect for a Friday. This is the work of California based artist/illustrator Liana Jegers. I love her simple color palette, those lovely lines, and the subjects she chooses. Her portfolio if filled with gorgeous work, zines, client collaborations … but these “farmers market” inspired pieces are my favorites. Here’s to a weekend filled with fresh fruit and fragrant flowers. Exhale.





francisca prieto

Stunning! I wrote about the insanely beautiful paper folding / cutting work of Chilean-born, London-based artist Francisco Prieto way back in 2013. Well, I just found out that some of her work is showing this summer in Venice and I cannot wait to see her stunning pieces in person! Now, this piece features images of French cathedrals, but I’m guessing I’ll see my fair share of “profound space” in Italy as well. Here is what this particular piece is about:

“Profound Space” takes us to that hushed moment of awe that comes upon entering the overwhelming and embellished space of a cathedral. As our captivated sight tries to trace every detail through hallowed light and shadow, Francisca folds fluted pillars and archway’s gothic arrows to point our eyes higher and higher. Pausing to look into each open window, tiny figures remind us of these structures’ sheer scale and activity; the processions, funerals and prayers that take place under their watch. Cavernous eaves, ethereal beams and triumphant domes are celebrated in lines of gold that continue beyond the pages of what can be drawn or written, framing the vast expanse of what we cannot see but only feel. Empty and weightless lines multiply above, shimmering in diamond-like crosses whose mouths whisper of the lofty heights of sacred space.

Hushed moment of awe, indeed.





katie mccann

Oh, I do love a good 100 day project, and London born, California based artist Katie McCann has given herself a great one: #100DaysofPaperHeads … love love love! She’s been working on this series since April 2017 and is just finishing up. I was tempted to post all of them, but that would be tiny bit crazy… right? Here’s her artist statement, which I also happen to love oh so very much:

”I have known such a creature” (Charles Altamont Doyle) is how I start my collages. As a child, I lived in a wonder world of faeries, witches, science fiction and botany. Not much has changed, the only difference being that I record all of my thoughts and stories in the form of intricately cut and pieced together collages. I like everything old and a little tired so I seek out images and photographs that are antique, vintage and forgotten. I transform these paper memories and records into other worldly creatures who are sometimes static like specimens and at other times are surviving in a unique habitat. I am rooted in the tradition of old fashioned childhood where discovery was at the bottom of the garden in amongst the crushed leaves, the lilac and the fungi. I hope that the creatures I uncovered in that quiet landscape are reflected in my collages.

ps. Some of these pieces are available in her Etsy shop, and more are being added every day!





mandi keighran

Oooh, intricate hand-cut collages. This is the very organized work of London based artist/designer Mandi Keighran. Not only are her color palettes gorgeous, and her cuts insanely precise but she also notes the magazine each piece was created with… and sometimes she even lists how many tiny pieces went into the piece. Have I mentioned that I love systems and organization?

ps. There are only a few items in her Etsy shop and as luck would have it all of them are in this post! ps. she’ll be adding more tomorrow!





“that night in toronto” {art show}

Oh, where do I begin? This show is so important to me. It’s an ode to a Canadian great – singer songwriter and front man of The Tragically Hip, Gord Downie. If you’re Canadian you know all about The Hip. For those of you who don’t, they are an iconic band that so many of us know and love. Gord is a musical genius, and sadly was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer last year. You could hear a nation gasp when that news was made public. I wanted to do something, but what? An art show, of course. Here is the curatorial statement for the show that opens THIS SATURDAY, JULY 8th at Mayberry Fine Art in Toronto {4-7pm}

“That Night In Toronto” 

Poetry. That is the best way to describe any and all lyrics written by Gord Downie and The Tragically Hip. From “wheat kings and pretty things”, to “musical chairs, double dares, memorized stairs” the words from these generation defining songs strike a chord in, well, anyone who has ever heard them.  As a curator, and artist, I want to honor this poetry the only way I know how – visually. I asked ten Canadian artists to create original work inspired by their favourite Tragically Hip lyrics. FYI, it was very difficult to choose, which is why some artists have more than one piece in the show! Originally, I was going to assign bits of Hip poetry to each of them, but every artist came back with stories of their favorite songs – memories from road trips, University, concerts, breakups, dance floors, house parties and the list goes on. The paintings, drawings, sculptures, collages, paper-cut pieces they’ve created are beyond what I ever could have imagined. Stunning artwork, each with the magical power to conjure up a song.

This show is a heartfelt tribute from one group of Canadian artists to another – and simply our way of saying, “Hey man, thanks”

ps. Twenty per cent of sales will be donated to the Gord Downie Fund for Brain Cancer Research via Sunnybrook Hospital. 

If you can come, please do. I will be there with bells on, or at least a Hip t-shirt. Mayberry is just across the street from the AGO {324 Dundas Street West}. Send your RSVP to toronto@mayberryfineart.com – see you soon!

Artists {in order shown} : Annyen Lam, Ben Skinner, Meghan Hildebrand, Danielle Krysa {me!}, Sara Genn, Sean William Randall, Don Proch, Jay Dart, Brandy Masch, Sarah Gee Miller





janice wu

I know you’re already wondering… it’s pencil & gouache on paper. So beautiful!  This is the lovely work of Vancouver based artist/illustrator Janice Wu. I am totally smitten with her entire portfolio of found bits and pieces – yep, anyone who can turn trash into treasure is a-ok in my book! ps. Now I want strawberry candies.





gunjan aylawadi


Seriously, how does she do it? Just kidding, I totally know how she does it because I had India born, Sydney based artist Gunjan Aylawadi on my podcast and she told me everything! These are just a few of her latest, and always insane, woven paper sculptures. The series is titled “Place for Prayer” and will be hanging in a new show that opens THIS SATURDAY, June 24th in Sydney at Koskela.

“In the last few years, my slow meditative paper weaving practice has evolved from two-dimensional paper tapestries to three-dimensional geometric sculptures. In this show, I have attempted to create a body of work exploring the idea of prayer and carving out a place for personal meditative contemplation. Inspired by the geometry, architecture and arabesque patterns in temples/churches/mosques that I grew up around, these works are an invitation to viewers to pause, observe, contemplate and rest.”

Sigh. Beautiful. The shows runs until July 23rd. {Also, how great is it that her clothes match her work!?}





summer camp 3 : unconventional and absurd

Unconventional and absurd? Yep, that pretty much describes my “s’moreo” photo for the day 7 prompt {“snacks”} from the first week of camp {combined with a photo of me, age 6}. And yes, you better believe I have a fresh s’moreo sitting right beside me at this very moment! So, before we get started on week 3 at AFYE Summer Camp, I want to show you just a handful of images created for last week’s art project (hashtagged #AFYEcamp). “Collaboration-Nation”, indeed! I did it too {posted below} by getting my husband and son to each make marks on a scary wooden panel I’ve been nervous to “ruin”… and I love it! Red marks made by my son Charlie, orange marks by my husband / amazing AFYE producer Greg, and the final piece by me:

 

Ahh, finally, that wood panel has paint on it… the title: “The rainbows and candy-colored chaos gave it away – Suzanne was hashtag blessed.”

And, of course, here are just a few of the many, many fabulous pieces you all collaborated on {photo credit links are at the very bottom of the post} :

So fantastic! Speaking of which, let’s get on to this week’s challenge:

Art Project No.3 

Shopping List : Yep, we’re heading to the grocery store for our art supplies this week {feel free to buy ingredients for s’moreos while you’re there!}. Using unconventional, AND CHEAP, materials can help bring back that fun, childlike joy in making. Paper plates, bags of macaroni, lunch bags, plastic bags from the bakery dept, pie tins, potatoes for potato stamps… whatever you can find! And if you want this to be super duper cheap, ie free, just raid your recycle bin!

Artist Examples: 

Here are three artists who don’t use the usual go-to art supplies for their work. First, American artist Hollie Chastain. She uses old book covers in place of canvas:

UK based artist Claire Brewster works with old maps and atlases:

Lydia Ricci uses, well, everything:

And finally, a few images of the absurdity embracing Eva Hesse:

Love!

Ah, another week of camp done… another s’moreo eaten! Thank you to Saatchi Art for supporting summer camp, and thanks so much to you for listening! AFYE camp will be back on Saturday June 17th … until then, be sure to hashtag your unconventional material piece {or pieces!} on Instagram with #AFYEcamp. Have fun!

Other links:

  1. Hollie Chastain on AFYE : Episode 15
  2. Claire Brewster on AFYE : Episode 84
  3. “Eva Hesse” – Documentary by Marcie Begleiter and Karen Shapiro
  4. Book signing at Book Passage Ferry Building, SF (June 9th, 6pm)
  5. Hotbed Benefit 2017
  6. Plant Hope Foundation
  7. Venice! European Cultural Academy
  8. TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE PODCAST: subscribe on iTunes.

*Photo credits from Project No.2, in the order they appear above:

1. @mary_stack // 2. @elisegedig  //  3. @nullsie  //  4. @bababeloco  //  5. @mlestudio