vivian greven

Ah yes, nothing like starting a Monday morning by falling in LOVE. This is the absolutely gorgeous work of Düsseldorf based artist Vivian Greven… and yes, they’re paintings. Oil and acrylic on canvas, and on MDF in the case of those two fabulous cutouts. Not to play favorites, but they’re my favorites! Here are a few excerpts from an interview Vivian did with Art Maze Magazine that gives a bit of insight into her work:

“I have painted bodies for as long as I can think. The question: “What am I?” has always been my driving force. I am deeply interested in the interaction of body and mind. During the painting process I gently stroke bodies into existence. Thus, I appreciate the body and try to overcome its cruel disregard in contemporary society. The body wants to be our most loyal companion but we want it to look and function like an electronic tool.”

… and in re: those two gorgeous cutouts:

“The busts belong to a part of my work which reflects upon power structures in language and imagery. They represent different Venus portrayals. Each of them has a cutout in the face, showing different punctuation marks. We use punctuation marks to create emojis in order to represent our emotions when communicating via smartphone. The busts are stigmatized with these punctuation marks. This work is about the stereotypical reduction of a human being, inside and outside.”

*Bio photo by Stefanie Stadel

“clearly confused about her role as a woman”

Don’t you hate it when that happens? So confused. Yep, my co-host today is Brooklyn based artist Natalie Baxter. I have loved Natalie’s textile work for years, and I’m sure you’ve seen it because I’ve written about her a bunch of times, she’s in both of my books on women (here and here), and she was on the podcast a few years ago. Natalie has taken quilting to a whole new level by making soft guns, stuffed American flags, and bedazzled eagles among other things. We were planning to tackle the topic of art vs. craft, which we attempted, but that also lead us down some other pretty winding paths like women in art, and mothers as artists. Yeah, big topics. You can listen right up there under her “clearly confused” banner, or subscribe here.

Here’s a little look at a few of the things we talked about. First up, a couple of her “Bloated Flags” and two “ALT CAPS” banners:

Love! And there’s more… how about some bedazzled eagles from her “Squad” series, and a bunch of “Warm Guns”:

Ooh, look at that big guy! So. Good. These guns were the first quilted pieces Natalie ever started making and, clearly, there was no turning back after that!

And finally, a couple of girls who both look fabulous in leopard print:

Ahhhh, so beautiful! I’m so excited to see what’s next for Natalie, ie., as soon as she posts about her “Housecoats”, I will too! Thanks so much to Natalie for taking the time to do this with me; thank you Create Magazine for supporting this episode… don’t forget to submit your work to their International call for women artists > February 2nd is the deadline for submissions; and huge thanks to you for listening… there will be more ART FOR YOUR EAR next weekend.

Other links:

  1. Sheila Hicks, Artist
  2. Allison Reimus, Artist
  3. Joshua Simpson Photography (Natalie’s husband)
  4. Vermont Student Center
  5. Gee’s Bend quilts
  6. Artist/Mother Podcast
  7. Erin M. Riley on AFYE
  8. The quilts she made for her sisters
  9. Natalie’s Upcoming Shows: FEMMEPHILIA (New York, NY) January 16 – 23, 2020 / DOMESTIC DISPLAYS, Alleghaney College Art Galleries (Meadeville, PA) Opening reception & panel discussion Tuesday Jan 21 6:30pm / MATERIAL ART FAIR (Mexico City) Feb 7-9, 2020 / BARBIE: Dreaming of a Female Future – Birmingham Museum of Art (Birmingham, AL) August 10, 2019 – January 26, 2020


hollie chastain

Oh my goodness. This is the latest work from American artist Hollie Chastain. I’ve written about Hollie a zillion times, because what she does with found images and old books is always beautiful. Case in point… look what she’s doing now!? Those forgotten book pages had no idea they were about to be woven together! LOVE. Happy Friday.

daniel arsham

Breath. Taking. Oh my word, this is the latest work by New York based artist Daniel Arsham. He’s known for “visually transforming ready-made objects of the last half century into subtly eroding artifacts”… objects like Mickey Mouse phones and old school Apple computers… well, in his most recent show, he’s going a little further back in time. Perrotin Paris is currently showing “Paris, 3020” from January 11 until March 21, 2020. Here is a description from Perrotin’s site:

For this exhibition, Daniel Arsham will present a new suite of large-scale sculptures based on iconic busts, friezes and sculptures in the round from classical antiquity. Over the past year, Arsham has been granted unprecedented access to the Réunion des Musées Nationaux – Grand Palais (RMN), a 200-year-old French molding atelier that reproduces masterpieces for several of Europe’s major encyclopedic museums. Arsham was able to use molds and scans of some of the most iconic works from the collections of the Musée du Louvre in Paris, Acropolis Museum in Athens, the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna and the San Pietro in Vincoli as source material for this new body of work. Interested in the way that objects move through time, the works selected by Arsham are so iconic that they have eclipsed their status as mere art object, and instead have embedded themselves into our collective memory and identity.

Ranging from Michelangelo’s Moses to the Vénus de Milo, each item was cast in hydrostone to produce a perfect to scale replica of the original sculpture, a process that shares formal qualities with historic wax casting. Arsham utilizes natural pigments that are similar to those used by classical sculptors, such as volcanic ash, blue calcite, selenite, quartz, and rose quartz. From that, individual erosions are chiseled into the surface of the hydrostone, a nod to the sculpting techniques of the Renaissance sculptors. Finally, Arsham applies his signature tactic of crystallization.

If you’re in Paris, 1. lucky you, 2. GO to this show!

{via Colossal}

elizabeth croft

Oh my. This is the work of Norway based, British born Elizabeth Croft. She is a curator and an artist, who creates installations, works with text, and all sort of other things… but the collage-lover in me was instantly smitten with her 3D collages.Yes! Little black diorama boxes full of weird wonderfulness, beautifully combining bits of nature with found images. I love all of the details that come together to help tell a strange story… those teeth, for example. I dunno what’s happening there, but I LOVE them.

sahar masarati

When Los Angeles based artist Sahar Masarati’s work started showing up in my Instagram feed, I thought what you probably thought for the majority of this post… “Ah, dramatically photographed flowers. Cool.” And then, slowly, the realization begins to set in… wait, are these … sugar? They are?! I CAN EAT THEM! Sahar’s background studies in Chemistry and Fashion Design {and a love for all things sweet} has resulted in her couture cake shop, Sugar Alkymi. Here are a few excerpts from her website about why she does what she does:

“I aim not to compete with mother nature, hence most of my floral sugar designs are abstract and not intended to be botanically correct. I believe in the poetry and romance of each creation with a whimsical and abstract touch. I’m fascinated by using mixed edible media, by pushing boundaries in the conventional use of sugar, in order to bring a new voice to this much elaborated art form … Sugar Alkymi’s oeuvres are designed to allure the indulger in the nostalgic history of art with romance, while amusing their palate to create sweet memories, one bite at a time. Sugar Alkymi is my Jewel and I welcome you to my magical world of sugar art and edible flower artistry.”

Sigh. Thank you, Sahar… I’m never leaving.

eliana marinari

Blurry photographs? Nope. Pastel, pencil, spray paint and ink on paper, mounted on panel… have I said ‘gasp’ yet? Gasp! This is the work of Geneva based artist Eliana Marinari, and this is a description of how and why she does what she does:

Eliana Marinari ‘s practice employs a longstanding discipline of drawing, reinterpreting the genres of landscape and portrait as a means to question our perception of reality. Her work reflects an intense fascination for the power of images and explores the human ability to recall a visual object and generate semantic associations.

Her interest has been formed by current theories on visual recognition to explain the transition from a perception-driven representation to memory-driven elaboration of concepts: meaning is attributed to each feature and translated on assumptions based on previous experiences, cultural beliefs and values.

Eliana Marinari’s two main series Recognition and Recollection borrow details from archives, found images and her own photographs. Carefully constructed by glazing aerosol acrylic on pastel and pencil drawings, the vestigial image mimics the process of creating a visual representation in our mind and brings time, memory, loss and an emotional narrative to the subject.

Beautiful! If you happen to be in Geneva, be sure to stop by her solo show, titled “Recollection Memory”, at Le Salon Vert. The opening event is this Thursday January 16th from 6-8pm, and the show will run until February 22nd, 2020.

marie-claude marquis

Hahahahahaha! From hand-lettered vintage plates, to new embroidery on old embroidery – both covered in curse words and blunt sayings – this is the work of  Canadian artist Marie-Claude Marquis:

“… Touching both graphic design and visual arts, she is inspired by souvenirs, nostalgia, pop culture, Quebec identity and her own emotions which she expresses with a feminine touch and a colorful sensitivity. 

In her gallery work, Marie-Claude  has mastered the art of re-appropriation in giving found objects new meaning. T hat way she can give these objects a second life, prolong their existence and reduce her own environmental impact. Mainly by typographical interventions, she always finds a way to give new meanings to these antiques. The result of her work is often humorous, sometimes irreverent but always keeps a big focus on aesthetics.”

Marie-Claude’s latest solo show, titled “We’re All Kinda Fucked Up” opens tomorrow night, Saturday January 11th at Recess in San Francisco {816 Sutter Street}. The opening reception is from 6-9pm, and the show runs until February 1, 2020.

ps. Recess is the newest space by the wonderful people behind Hashimoto Contemporary and Spoke Art. This is their first show at Recess {previously the Spoke space}, so go and check it out! 

crystal liu

Gasp! This is the latest work by San Francisco based, Canadian artist Crystal Liu. I’ve written about her before (2014 and 2010), and clearly I need to again. How can I not share these marbled mountains, delicate flowers, and trees blowing in the wind as the fog rolls in. Are you wondering what, how, huh!? Let me answer that for you… 48″x48″ gouache, watercolor, ink and collage on paper. Oh my word, so good.

mya kerner

Sigh. This is the work of American artist Mya Kerner. The last time I wrote about Mya, her mountains were inky blue… but for her latest show, currently hanging at Linda Hodges Gallery in Seattle, her palette is filled with muted, dreamy pastel hues. Here is part of her artist statement for “The Rise and Fall of Stone”:

“My work revolves around ancestral history, storytelling, and ecological concern in an exploration of memory and landscape. The paintings reference specific landscapes, but I work to depict each place somewhere between reality and memory. In the landscapes, white space meets fields of muted color through shattered lines of graphite, suggesting a continuous cycle of transformation …

… My background in permaculture and a lineage of Eastern European foresters first drove me to explore humanity’s relationship with the natural world through my art practice. More recently, I have expanded on these ideas, reacting to anthropocentrism and a sense of uprootedness, both personal and intergenerational, by studying Earth-based traditions. As I reflect upon stories from the spirits of the land, my own memory, and those of my ancestors, I ask questions about how we relate to place through the lenses of wildness, stewardship, civilization, and change.”

Beautiful. This show is open now through the month of January, and the artist reception is tomorrow night, Thursday January 9th from 6~9pm.