When I started trying to promote my own artwork online I kept coming across other people's art that amazed or compelled me in one way or another. This blog has been a way for me to practice thinking and writing about art, as well as learning more about my peers and all the incredible art that is being made out there.

Search for an Artist on this blog (or cut and paste from the list at the bottom of this page)

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Winter 2013

I've always found the the starkness of winter landscapes compelling. Here's a collection of wintry images to enjoy. Click on each artist's name to link back to my original post on their work. And I'll be back with new art after the holidays.

Mark Thompson
"Be Lost In Me"  painting  50" x 66"  2009

Chester Arnold
"60 years in the Forest"  72" x 60"  oil on linen  2012

Dina Brodsky
"Trading Post"  oil on mylar  8x8 inches

Leonid Tishkov
Private Moon series - "Moon and Hunter"

Suichi Nakano
"Till Find The Forest"  oil on canvas  91 x 116.7cm  2010

Sonja Hinrichsen
Snow Drawings - Rabbit Ears Pass, CO - Jan. 29, 2012

Aron Wiesenfeld
"The Wedding Party" oil on canvas  70" x 95"

Peter Rotter
Deep Snow 48×60 Oil on Canvas 2009
For more winter paintings click here!

Monday, December 16, 2013

Stephen Hall

American Still Life"  acrylic on canvas  40" x 60"  2013

"Calavera"  acrylic on canvas  24" x 32"  2013 

"Don't Hold Your Breath"  acrylic on canvas  60" x 30"  2013

"Leap Frog"  acrylic on canvas  60" x 36"  2013

"Sinner"  acrylic on canvas  32" x 44"  2013
Here's a different take on the pop-surrealism front. Flat graphic designs depicting a bewildering array of ordinary and bizarre objects from eggbeaters to brass knuckles which are superimposed upon backgrounds, other objects, clothes or even human flesh. If it is not entirely clear what the references mean or how they relate, well, don't worry about it too much. Let the odd juxtapositions exist for their own sake and measure your response subjectively. There is humor here as well as a dark pessimism. Nature flits about the devices of human violence but their relationship is not always clear. This is the heart of surrealism. Dreams create symbols by reordering context. Metaphor is not analogy. This does not represent that. Metaphor means one thing can be interpreted as almost anything else. The human mind is designed to makes novel connections and unlikely associations and in so doing discover new meanings. Art in this sense is always a participatory affair. Though the artist works in private the art itself is not complete until new eyes receive it and reinterpret it outside that intentions of its creator. So what do you think is going on? The success of such work depends on it's ability to arrest our attention and successfully invite us to play with its ideas.
You can see more at the artist's website: www.stephenhallart.com

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sally Finch

"Dryland Farming 3 Moro"  Graphite, Acrylic ink on paper  18" x 18"  2012

"Dryland Farming 4 Pullman"  Graphite, Acrylic ink on paper  18" x 18"  2012

"Dryland Farming 6 Moscow"  Graphite, Acrylic ink on paper  18" x 18"  2013

"Weather Study 19 New Delhi"  Graphite, Acrylic ink on paper  9" x 9"  2011

"Weather Study 9 Juba"  Graphite, Acrylic ink on paper  9" x 9"  2011

I'm typically attracted to art that has an immediate draw, a visceral impact that sucks you right in and either forces you to linger over the details or to simply stand back and try to imagine how it managed to grab you in the first place. This is why I'm attracted narrative art. The story telling instinct in human beings is a powerful one and narrative images compel us to expand upon them. Sally Finch's abstract work couldn't be more different. It's more analogous to science and mathematics than to any form of representational art. In science there is a truism that a subject cannot be studied if it cannot be measured. For this reason data, raw empirical numbers, measurements of events, objects and durations, form the raw material of all research. Just so, the artist begins her work with data sets that attract or interest her for various reasons, "through beauty, utility... curiosity, or the work it has taken to accumulate." Then she develops a transcription method unique to each piece so that the data is interpreted through color, shape, etc., bit by hand drawn bit. The resulting images are strangely compelling, delicate abstractions that still evoke the technical and computational nature of their source material. Without understanding the key the meaning is completely opaque, even with the context clues provided in their titles. And yet... and yet they so clearly represent something real, information is so clearly imbedded within them that their subtle beauty becomes almost secondary to the mystery of their interpretation. If her work is akin to science it is also akin to music which, like science, is also deeply inter-dependent upon mathematics. I could imagine a composer working in some similar way, creating abstract sound-scapes out of data-sets the same way Sally Finch produces her color grids. I can also imagine listening to such "music" while observing this work in a museum or gallery setting. Hm. Just a thought.  If I could have one nitpick with the artist it would be only this: I wish there were some close-ups shots of the images on her website. Because I've seen some of her work in person, and there's something deeply compelling about the minute detail of the pieces, the hand-drawn aspect to them, and the intimacy of each little tick-mark or circle of color that piles up with others to create the whole. In a data set, individual numbers are rarely interesting. That's part of the magic here. Once translated into visual form every number becomes a thing of beauty.
You can see more work on the artist's website: sallyfinch.com
or in person if you happen to be in Portland, Oregon, at Froelick Gallery

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

John Grade

La Chasse


Seeps of Winter


Elephant Bed - fabrica

Starting with the suggestion of organic forms, then blowing them up to enormous scales, often inserting them in architectural settings, John Grade creates juxtapositions that catch you off guard, stop you in rapt wonder. And that seems to me to be one of the important tasks of art, to catch you unawares so that you are, for a moment at least, transported outside yourself lost in thoughtless wonder. But ideas matter too or the art is not worth returning to even when it manages to catch you in this fashion. His work is about more than the snapshots you see here. Much of the work has a lifespan. They aren't often meant to last and so often the nature of their destruction or decay also becomes part of the process of the art. In addition to pictures there are short videos on his various installations. They don't always stay in one place either and the simple act of transporting the creations from one environment to another has a way of changing your perception of it. Which is all just to say that this is really fun, really cool stuff, and what more could you want from art anyway?
Go check it all out on his website: www.johngrade.com

And thanks to folks at www.booooooom.com for posting it before me