Sep 30, 2011

REVIEW | Protest T-shirts: Designs from the Cult Independents, Eleanor Mathieson, Graffito, 2008

Protest T-shirts Cover Illustration, T-shirt by Mama, The Revolution will not be Televised
Think about the last thing about this world that you felt angry about.

Keep thinking about it.

Think about it until your face gets hot, your hands clench, your eyes burn, your head gets stuffy, and you feel you just might burst from pressurized rage storming in the confines of your skull.

No go make a work of art.

Trend | A Particular Type of Net Art

Tommyboy Untitled

I’d like to discuss a particular brand of net art that culls from the expansive recesses of the internet where discarded imagery and unassuming nostalgia become the basis for visceral expression and a unique sort of social commentary. Stylistically ranging anywhere from the macabre campiness of Kenneth Anger to the cosmic naivety of Lisa Frank as well as from the mundane plethora of vast amounts of picture hosting sites teeming with a treasure trove of potential material that at first glance may seem innocuous yet somehow poignantly glimpses into the fascinating world of the human condition.

TREND | Comics | More Than Cartoons

Brian Azzarello, The Joker, 2008

In the past twenty plus years comic books or (nerd time) "graphic novels" have successfully put their sword in the sand. However in the past decade comic books have really set themselves apart. Once thought to be a "simple" childish activity, it has grown into something different entirely. The motives behind comic books have shifted. They have become a choice for many writers and artists to convey a message, to captivate an audience, and  to present  artistic styles. So even though Hollywood  can come into my niche and make some of the worst movies I've ever seen, I can assure you comic books are here to stay. It's not just about "blue tights" and "civic duty" anymore. Comic books have crawled from the depths and worked their way into our culture, solidifying itself as a true "sister art form".

REVIEW | Art In The Streets, Skira Rizzoli, 2011

Art In The Streets, organized by Jeffrey Deitch, 2011

Over the summer the Museum of Contemporary Art at The Geffen (MOCA) in Los Angeles held the "Art In The Streets" exhibition (April 17th 2011 - August 8th 2011). The exhibition catalog covers lots of ground throughout the world of graffiti and street art but as with any book on this subject it is very difficult to cover every single aspect of it. The catalog is 320 pages of essays interviews and photos of the street art and graffiti movment, it is available in hard and soft cover and is still available to be purchased from

TREND | Crafting in Contemporary Art

Barb Hunt

Antipersonnel, 1998 and ongoing
approx. 50 knitted sculptures
collection of the Artist

Crafting has typically been used as a purely functional medium or a an aesthetically decorative form of art. Recently there has been a resurgence of a type of Arts and Crafts movement that shows that knitting and crocheting are not just for little old ladies anymore but have their own place in contemporary fine art.

PROFILE | Silvia B.

Silvia B., Almost Perfect,
Skin colored leather on synthetic material, 
suture thread, wig and lashes, glass eyes, wooden sandals. 160 x 75 x 30 cm 2004.
After receiving the book Conversations on Sculpture, in the mail, I began to thumb through the pages and came across the work of Silvia B. Her eerie figures photograph as dolls, but when I converted their measurements I realized they are actually life-size. I have not personally made eye contact with one yet, but I can imagine their presence to be unnerving.

TREND | Surrealist figurative Paintings

Lori Earley, Angelene, 2007, Oil on Board
Surrealism has been around for quite some time, you could even count Hieronymus Bosch as such an artist hundreds of years ahead of his time. So I thought, how has Surrealism progressed in these past few decades?  I realized what I personally wanted to focus on and that being surrealism mutating and deforming the human body; How what we see may not be what we see. The human form is so simple and yet so complex. How is it that we ourselves become the focus of attention to be distorted?

TREND | Street Art, not just Aerosol

Blu  "Untitled" Acrylic House Paint
When I had first became aware of street art I thought immediately of graffiti culture, but its apparent that the culture of street art has grown past just the use of the aerosol medium. Instead some artists explore mediums that take on the 3d and interactive forms. I believe this has something to do with the reaction it garners from the viewer. The viewer is much more casual and isn't expecting to see a work of art on their way to work, school or whatever it may be. It's only the use of more abstract mediums may increase how the viewer reacts to the ambiguity of the art. 

Sep 29, 2011

PROFILE | Yago Hortal

Yago Hortal, KF23, Acrylic on Canvas, 2010

I first came across Yago Hortal one lazy afternoon, scrolling through Tumblr after a long shift working at Starbucks.  Weary from a full eight hours of no colors except for the warm browns and bland whites of coffee and frothed milk, I was caught off-guard by the swirling, Day-Glo greens and neon pinks present in KF23.  The application of the paint and the overall execution of the piece remind me of the works of the Abstract Expressionists I admire so much, particularly Helen Frankenthaler’s vast and vibrant splatters of paint.  The rainbow color scheme is something along the lines of Lisa Frank on acid.  It was love at first sight. 

TREND | YouTube

YouTube logo, 2005

YouTube as they put it in their logo is a place on the web to literally broadcast yourself to the whole world. For some this has ruined their life's, but for the lucky ones it has brought fame and fortune to their life's. YouTube can be looked at as both good and evil, but it can also be looked at as art.

REVIEW | The Body in Contemporary Art

The Body in Contemporary Art by Sally O'Reilly, 2009

In the book “The Body in Contemporary Art” by Sally O’Reilly the subject of the body becomes integrated as an art object. The book further delves into how the body explores the art language intellectually, and how the body is used in art as a creative outlet. Emphases on how the body has moved from traditional portraiture to a sculptural media in enhancing an artistic work. The body is used as a medium to push the artistic boundaries and the usage of the body allows more senses to be explored in art. The body as a usage of an art media in contemporary art is explained pleasantly decent in the book “The body in Contemporary Art” by Sally O’Reilly and the body is a continuously relevant component.

The effectiveness of the author’s approach to explaining how the body has become an artistic media in art is comprehensible. Each chapter is categorized by subject and the reader is capable of reading through the explanations of various artworks that portrays the body. Many different contemporary artists are used and there is fluid subject matter from one artist to the next. Artworks are provided with short descriptions, artists’ names, artwork titles, dates of when artwork was completed, and

Trend: Graffiti Doing it BIG

 FOS Crew, Detail, 2009        

There is a general ego when it comes to graffiti, it's one of the only illegal things someone can do that isn’t meant to be discrete. I met a handful of graffiti artists when I moved to Milwaukee, Wisconsin after I graduated high school. Milwaukee was a graffiti artist’s dream, since most business moved south to Chicago and industry moved across the ocean Milwaukee was a skeleton of warehouses with endless blank walls. A few people took advantage of the size of the buildings to go big. While I started to travel to different cities I noticed this was an ongoing trend and saw more graffiti artists moving away from conventional aerosol cans and markers to industrial paints, rollers and sprayers to push the size and limits of graffiti.