medium /// sculpture




michelle benoit

michellebenoit

“Lucite, wood, paints and mixed media are cut, assembled, adhered and re-cut.” This is the description of this beautiful, translucent, layered, candy-hued work {that I kind of want to taste} by American artist Michelle Benoit. Quite a few of these pieces are currently part of a two-person show titled, “Dive In”, at Muriel Guepin Gallery in New York until February 11, 2017. If you go, don’t taste them. Apparently you’re not really allowed to do that kind of thing.





“warm guns ‘n bloated flags”

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Well, this could not be more timely. I am so thrilled to have Kentucky-born, Brooklyn-based artist Natalie Baxter on the podcast this week. Her work is beautiful, smart, and yes, very timely. This was such an interesting conversation, with a very clever woman, who’s using her art to make people think. Granted, according to her comments section, people think all sorts of things about her work. Perfect – that’s the point of this whole art thing, right? You can listen right up there under that knotted/bloated flag, titled “AMERICA, CURRENT MOOD”, or you can subscribe on iTunes.

First up, Natalie surrounded by hundreds of plush guns in her Brooklyn apartment, followed by a few of my favorite pieces from her “WARM GUN” series:

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Oh my word, I could not love them more! And in case you haven’t listened yet, the story behind all of her work is just so interesting. Almost a happy, obsessive accident thanks to her creative curiosity and growing up with a grandmother who knew quilting inside and out.

Alright, from a bunch of cozy guns, to “BLOATED FLAGS”. I love this series so, so, so much:

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nataliebaxter_goldflag

Gah! So good! And yes, that completely gold/tassel-covered flag is titled, “PEOPLE WILL THINK YOU’RE MAKING A TRUMP FLAG”. Again, the story behind that title is, in fact, gold!

Alright, from Trump flags to slightly droopy “artillery”:

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Yep. The gun-lovers weren’t huge fans of these pieces (and, spoiler alert, may have been the ones leaving terrible, nasty comments on Natalie’s social channels.) Sigh.

And finally, during the not-so-speedy speed round, I asked Natalie if she could only choose one to work with from now on – would it be tassels or gold fabric:

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She chose tassels… see, I told you she was smart. Thank you so much to Natalie for not only taking the time to talk to me, but for making this wonderful work. I can’t wait to see what comes out of the residency she’s doing right now. Thanks to Saatchi Art for supporting this 85th episode; and as always, big high five’s to you for listening! There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Natalie’s videos
  2. Wassaic Artist Residency (NY)
  3. Vermont Studio Center
  4. Dooce.com
  5. Alison Milne Gallery, Toronto
  6. Nasty Woman Exhibition (SOLD OUT!)
  7. Whitney Museum of American Art
  8. This American Life
  9. Ah Haa School for the Arts, Telluride CO

 





jeffrey gibson

jeffreygibson

Wow, now these are a punch to the creative gut. This is the powerful, gorgeous, insanely detailed work of New York based artist Jeffrey Gibson. He grew up all over the US, not to mention living in Germany, Korea, and England along the way. With a Choctaw and Cherokee background, Jeffrey uses traditional elements (beads, metal cones) mixed with contemporary elements (Everlast punching bags) to make his very powerful point about the treatment of Native Americans. Most beautiful TKO, ever.





“more love, less fear”

clairebrewster1

I wrote about London based artist Claire Brewster for the first time in early 2009. Yep, I have loved her delicate, intricate, paper-cutting work from the moment I saw it. Since then I’ve written about her several times, always keeping an eye out for what she might be up to next! It was so lovely to finally speak to her in person and to hear her story. From a little girl cutting kittens and saucepans out of magazines at the kitchen table, to a full-time artist using those same {although honed} cutting skills to cover gallery walls with lace-like birds. Listen right up there under that stunning bird and his shadow, or subscribe on iTunes.

Ok, a little taste of what I love about Claire’s work:

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I mean, come on!? How beautiful are those? All of the old maps? The colors? THAT CUTTING SKILL!? And I’m just getting warmed up. How about these insane shadows, that were basically happy accidents:

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Sigh. Stunning. Speaking of which, her metal pieces:

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Right? Those birds are insane… they look like metal lace.

Now, we talked about commissions and installations, both of which Claire loves doing. Here’s a peek at a few of my favorites – from a hotel lobby, to a gallery, to a corporate office:

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Magical! If you’d like to work with Claire either in a commercial space, or in your home… call her!

And finally, at the end of our conversation we got a little political. She’s working on a new top secret series, but what she could tell me is the premise, and why she’s feeling compelled to move in a new direction. It is simply, and beautifully, this thought:

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Yes. Yes we do. Thank you so much to Claire for doing this with me; thanks to Saatchi Art for supporting yet another episode; and of course, thank you so much for listening! There will be more art for your ear next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Carmen Herrera at the Whitney, NYC
  2. OLFA knives
  3. Ian Wallace (Canadian artist I mentioned)
  4. Zadok Ben David (black/colored metal flower installation)
  5. “Cut Up / Cut Out” Show at The Bedford Gallery

 

 





lydia ricci (from scraps)

lydiaricci

“From Scraps” … love! This work, by Philadelphia based artist Lydia Ricci, feels like a folded, glued, taped walk down memory lane for me… roller skates, a boombox, and don’t even get me started on that rotary phone {I can almost hear those little rotating ticks now!}. She refers to this series/her work as “from scraps”, and she means it:

PAPER, BOARD, THE BACK SIDE OF ANYTHING, GLUE, HOT GLUE, TAPE, STAPLES AND WHAT WAS ALMOST THROWN AWAY.

Phew! Thank goodness none of those bits n pieces made it into the trash!





agnès cappadoro

agnescappadoro

Paper. Paper!? Sigh. They’re almost like Zen gardens, but instead of rocks, French graphic designer/artist Agnès Cappadoro has used beautifully cut and folded pieces of colorful paper to create these quiet paper sculptures. Exhale. Breathe. Love.





huntz liu

huntzliu

Paper. PAPER! I wrote about LA based artist Huntz Liu almost exactly one year ago to the day. Well, he’s been busy since then! Oh so many stunning, beautifully cut, colorful layers. Sigh. He’s part of a gorgeous two-person show with Michelle Benoit, titled “Dive In”, at the Muriel Guepin Gallery in New York. It opens this Friday, January 6th and runs until February 11th… so if you’re in New York, go look at those lovely layers in person! ps. Huntz will be at the opening, all the way from LA.





ben skinner & genevieve dionne

So, some of us just pick up a gingerbread house kit from the store… but if you’re an artistic genius, like Vancouver based artists {and married couple} Ben Skinner and Genevieve Dionne, you choose to make “Sugar Mountain” craziness instead. Take a peek, like this little fella…

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See? Geniuses. Oh, and in case you’re wondering… yes, all of this is edible! ALL OF IT. Genevieve was the master behind most of the fondant and gum paste critters, but they also had some help from two of their talented friends, Sara Ryan and Morag Kydd. Merry Christmas Eve eve… see you tomorrow for one final “Art For Your Ear” podcast episode to finish off 2016!





dana hargrove

dana_hargrove

There are few people that love colorful stacks of stuff as much as I do… but I think American artist Dana Hargrove might give me a run for my money! I loooooove these gorgeous pieces {acrylic on cut wood}… so much detail and careful planning that results in colorful, patterned towers and piles that I could stare at all day loooooong. Happy Friday.





joy dilworth

joydilworth

I can’t decide what I find more exciting – looking at this insanely weird & wonderful work, or reading the list of materials used. Let me elaborate: No.1 Nylon mesh tubing, wax, q-tips, foam, shadow … No.2 Latex, q-tips, beeswax, ink, cotton twine, found wheel … No.3 Wood, nylon mesh tubing, sugar. Wait, did she say sugar!? Yep. This is the work of Philadelphia based artist Joy Dilworth and it’s safe to say, I’m smitten.