summer camp 4 : captured through collage

Hey, campers! Ok, it’s week 4 so you know the drill… before we get started I want to show you some of the unconventional artwork that came out of last week’s “unconventional materials” art project (hashtagged #AFYEcamp). When I was at the grocery store I popped down the paper goods aisle and grabbed some envelopes. The post-its were a last minute fix, found on my desk at home, when I needed a turquoise ocean for Daryl to enjoy:

“he’d paid extra for ‘the gold sands ocean view’, so yes, daryl was going to get his GD money’s worth.”

And once again, zillions of you took this challenge and RAN with it! Here are a few pieces pulled from Instagram via our summer camp hashtag, #AFYEcamp {photo credit links are at the very bottom of the post} :

Candy, eggshells, lego stamps, candy sprinkles, old bananas … yeah, I’d call that “unconventional”. Ok, let’s see what you’ll do with this week’s project:

Art Project No.4 

“Captured through Collage “ : Today’s challenge is all about capturing the essence of your favorite place through collage. That might be your garden, New York, an imaginary planet, or even Venice! Yep, VENICE! I mentioned this at the end of camp last time… for two weeks this August {weeks of the 7th and the 14th} I’m going to be teaching part of a course through the European Cultural Center’s Academy that’s happening during the Venice Biennale. Crazy. Here’s another crazy tidbit… the Academy wants one of you to be there too so they asked me to make this week’s challenge a contest… the prize? A week of tuition at the Academy, for one of the two weeks while I’m there {which happens to be worth 950 Euros!}. Insane, I know. Travel / hotel is NOT included but the tuition for a week would be. If you can get yourself to Venice, and you want to enter this contest, please do! Your collage would be Venice themed, obviously. Just hashtag your work with #AFYEcamp AND #JealousInVenice so that I’m sure to see it!

For those of you who aren’t interested, simply take this challenge in a different direction using your own personal dream place, wherever that might be. I can’t wait to see them!

Artist Examples: 

Here are three artists who create worlds with found images, scissors, and glue. Given the Venice theme, I think it’s best to start with an Italian artist, yes? Yes! This is “Greetings” by Caterina Rossato. One giant collaged landscape made from more found postcards than I can even imagine:

Don’t you want to go on a vacation in there? Me too! I’d also love to visit this folklore-filled land created by Tasmania based artist Bethany van Rijswijk:

Ah, I would totally go there too. And finally, the Romanian duo of Irina & Silviu Szekely. This series takes us into a really bizarre art museum:

Three for three… I’d totally spend a day in here, too!

And finally, the campfire story all about Milton Rauschenberg … aka Robert Rauschenberg. His “combines” combine all sorts of things – paint, silkscreen, random bits of stuff found on the streets of New York:

See? Once again, if you gather the right materials you can create any world you want! {I also had to include that photo of Robert in the studio with Jasper Johns, pre breakup}. Well, there you have it. The campfire is out and now it’s time to hit your local thrift shop and find those books, magazines, postcards, etc., that are going to make your world come to life! Be sure to hashtag your worlds on Instagram with #AFYEcamp, and #JealousInVenice if you want to be part of the contest {more info below}. Have fun!

Other info/links:

VENICE CONTEST: Make your Venice inspired collage and then post / hashtag it on Instagram with #AFYEcamp AND #JealousInVenice. The weeks you can choose from are the weeks of August 7th, and August 14th {that’s when I’ll be there as one of the instructors}. I will be choosing ONE WINNER on Friday June 30, 2017.

  1. European Cultural Academy, Venice
  2. Anthony Zinonos, Episode No.2
  3. WideWalls.ch
  4. TO SUBSCRIBE TO THE PODCAST: subscribe on iTunes.

*Photo credits from Project No.3, in the order they appear above:

1. @jennifer_geldard // 2. @maryanndidriksen  //  3. @timbra_blog  //  4. @jodiejaneartist  //  5. @julieligerbelair  //  6. @kc.christmas





sissel blystad

Small textiles, big rugs, and elaborate pattern as far as the eye can see! How, I ask you, have I not learned about Norwegian artist Sissel Blystad until now? She was born in Oslo in 1944, and she’s been making work since 1972! I love this chunk of text from her site… it’s been translated from Norwegian so it might be a bit off, but her honesty and humor certainly isn’t:

“Here is my self-made website with works ranging from 1972 to 2015. It may look like I’ve taken everything I’ve done, but I have not deleted. I think it’s important and show also older stuff, which I do not necessarily are equally happy with today, but that is also part of my oeuvre.
I feel like I’ve gotten done very much when I look back, and that’s because I’ve had this as the first priority in all years. And I must, with hand on heart, say that I have never made anything just to sell, but only to meet and challenge myself. By type, I’m curious, and do not give up so easily. And why have I managed to claw me stuck in this job. Like many other artists also I had to take other jobs beside at times, but usually with great reluctance.”

The. Best.

ps. An installation view from a 2016 show at Hester NY, and a photo of Sissel in her studio from 2011:





havoc hendricks

Ahh, geodes … except that these are paintings. What?! Yep. This is the gorgeous work of American artist Havoc Hendricks. His portfolio is full of mountains, moons, and marble too … but these geodes? Oh my. They spoke to me. And, because seeing the scale of a piece {and the artist!} is always fun, here’s one more image for you:

Love.





bill zindel

Oh boy. I have written about American artist/illustrator Bill Zindel many times before {in fact, he’s in my book “Collage”… if you have it, you might recognize his work because it’s on the cover!}. I just happened to be strolling past his site yesterday and discovered this “Quad Series”. Hand made collages in found frames… YES please!





laura hendricks

I want to go there. But I can’t. None of us can. Nope, American artist (Utah based) Laura Hendricks photographs all sorts of lovely locations, and then combines them, creating dreamy collaged together places that don’t exist anywhere else except her portfolio. Here’s why she does what she does…

… [Laura] CAPTURES THE INTERESTING ELEMENTS OF NATURE (MOST OFTEN SKIES AND LANDSCAPES) FROM TWO DIFFERENT LOCATIONS AND COMBINES THEM TO CREATE ONE IMAGE. THE END RESULT IS OFTEN OTHER-WORLDLY BUT ALMOST ALWAYS BELIEVABLE. THESE PHOTO COMBINATIONS ARE MEANT TO REMIND PEOPLE HOW THEY FEEL, INSTEAD OF WHAT THEY SEE, WHEN WITNESSING SPECTACULAR, NATURAL LANDSCAPES AND SCENES. 

Well, consider me reminded! Love.





wanda bernardino

These are the mysterious oil paintings of Portugal born, London based artist Wanda Bernardino. I could write a story about every faceless pair up there. Why no faces you ask? Here you go…

Bernardino’s enigmatic portraits deliberately copy, rework and recreate individuals from historic paintings. In seeking an elusive connection with the past she uncovers the processes behind the original and transcribes marks across time. She blanks out the subject’s faces after having painted them to force the observer to re-examine the attribute of identity we ascribe to portraiture. One might see such an act as vandalism but it explores aesthetic, social, political and moral attitudes we hold toward both art and representations of history. {via bo-lee gallery, London}

Happy Monday.





kirstin lamb

Gasp! These are just a few pieces from American artist Kirstin Lamb‘s latest series, “Embroidery Paintings”. Sure, they might look like embroidery at first glance, but when you get up close ‘n personal you’ll discover they’re actually paintings made up of zillions of tiny, colorful dots of gouache on Duralar.  LOVE! You know what I love even more? The final piece above, titled “Floral With Butterfly”, will be hanging on the wall at this year’s Hotbed Benefit in San Francisco. Yes, a few months ago I was asked to curate the artwork for this annual gala, in which 100% of the proceeds will go to Planet Hope, an organization that provides outreach and educational resources to homeless, abused, and terminally ill children. Obviously, I said YES. Twenty very talented artists donated (donated!) work for this show, including the wonderful and talented Kirstin Lamb. I will be at the benefit tomorrow night – with Kirstin! – so keep an eye on my Instagram feed for highlights! ps. It’s hosted by Sharon Stone, as Planet Hope was started by Sharon and her sister Kelly in 1993. Amazing. All of it. Happy Friday!





saegan moran

The portfolio of American artist Saegan Moran is filled with installation and sculpture, but her Instagram feed is overflowing with these new collages. What I can gather from my stalking researching, is that she hasn’t been focusing on her own work lately {she’s been teaching?}, and so she’s trying collage as a way to get back into it. Um, MISSION ACCOMPLISHED. These are fantastic … sculptures, that just happen to be flat. Gorgeous.





stephen eichhorn

Seriously, is there a better combo? I saw this hilarious and beautiful series, by Chicago based collage artist Stephen Eichhorn, a year or two ago. I loved them then, I love them now… the only difference being NOW they’re in a book titled, you guessed it, Cats & Plants. Here are the ins and outs:

Cats & Plants is the debut book from Chicago-based artist Stephen Eichhorn. The 152-page book includes more than 200 rich color images of the artist’s curious cat collages, and features felines balancing plants (and sometimes shells or minerals) on their furry heads. There are Calicos and cactuses, Siamese and succulents, and so much more. The book is now available for pre-order, and ships June 12.

In conjunction with the book, Zioxla has also released a limited-edition print, which is available here. For each book or print sold on this website, a can of cat food will be donated to a non-profit organization that saves cats from shelters and places them in loving homes.

Isn’t that great!? Turns out this work is hilarious, beautiful, and for a good cause. Meow.





polluted water popsicles

Beautiful, until you realize what you’re looking at … “Polluted Water Popsicles”. I have to be honest, I don’t really know the full story behind this project. They only have a Facebook page, with just a little bit of information… but would that stop me from writing about these gross beauties that are making a VERY important point? Absolutely not. Now, that bit of information isn’t in English, so this is what Google Translate told me their “about” section said:

Nice = delicious?
From Taiwan’s 100 polluted water sources, made it into ice, and then re-engraved into a 1: 1 poly model to do the show, through the sense of the impact of beautiful packaging to convey the importance of pure water, and finally to show the real Appearance. So beautiful pudding, you dare to eat?

Works for me! Pretty popsicles, important message … but don’t even think about licking one. Seriously.

UPDATE: Just found out a little more {thanks to Hosanna for commenting on Facebook!} This is what she told me: “These were created by 3 design students in Taiwan for their graduation exhibition. They took water samples from 100 water sources (including rivers, sewers, streams, etc.) that people normally wouldn’t notice, but were already polluted. They used the water samples to make popsicles and in turn made 1:1 poly models of the popsicles, which are what you’re seeing. They did this to emphasize and show how important clean water is to the environment.”