Sungwon is a young, up-and-coming artist, illustrator, and fairy tale writer. Her blue girl series has caught the eye of quite a few netizens and earned her a relatively small, but loyal followers. The series is composed of black and white illustrations with blue girl the only one in color. Each image encourages the reader to try and recreate the story behind it. Also, if one looks closely, one may be surprised to find a few hidden easter eggs in her work. Sungwon is currently based in South Korea.
Dogs are pretty popular with us humans. Back when we just as many fleas as they did, they provided companionship, a measure of protection, and a hand (or in this case, paw) at hunting dinner. These days, the net is filled to the brim with pictures of them. Professional pet photographer Elke Vogelsang has created a soulful collection of images featuring her trio of lovable mutts. Unknown pedigree notwithstanding, the trio’s images are fast gaining a worldwide audience. Shold you ever find yourself in the vicinity of Hildesheim in Germany, feel free to drop by Elke’s studio to have your portrait taken with your pet. Satisfaction is all but guaranteed.
“Groomed” is Paul Nathan’s brand new photobook which features an astounding array of pooches arrayed in equally impressive coutures. Paul focused in capturing the texture of his subject’s fur as well as their expressions and posture. Mos of his subjects are entries at high profile grooming competitions and showcases the expertise of some of the world’s top groomers. Poodles, Bichon Frise’s, Cocker Spaniels, and Bedlington Terriers are the usual victims…er… subjects of grooming competitions. The photo above shows the work of a groomer who may have gotten a bit carried away, but Paul gets his satisfaction from showcasing beauty for beauty’s sake even if the end result is fun cross between a clown’s wig and Groucho Marx.
Jeremy Mann is a very talented painter who specializes in gritty cityscapes done in oil and canvas. According to one website: “Each of his works seems so wholly genuine, a mix of mystery and grit that brings a sublime light to iconic cities like New York and San Francisco.” Well said, except that the subjects of his paintings could very well be any highly urbanized city – crowded and teeming with life and ceaselessly busy. His style is light-years away from realism, as a matter of fact, he seems to strive for blurriness, yet each scene he captures on canvas is perfectly recognizable. When not making awesome paintings of cities, he also paints still lifes, landscapes, and the human figure. Jeremy can usually be found in his studio in San Francisco. If you’d like to gawk at his work some more, there’s some currently on display at the John Pence Gallery.
Redmer Hoekstra is a Dutch artist whose work is slowly garnering worldwide attention for their humorous and slightly disturbing appeal. His creations are clever composites of animals and objects. A loosely bound owl, a peeling cetacean-submarine, warty garden bricks, steam-powered rhinos, dirigible moths, scaly keyboards, and a ravenous set of feathery teacups – all unlikely, but each perfectly combined. You can take a good, long look at even more of his work over at Behance, or you could buy prints of his work in Redmer’s very own online shop.
Stare long enough at Graszka Paulska’s painting and it starts staring right back at you. I guess the creepiness and surrealism of his work is part of the appeal. Te viewer simply can’t help but take a good long look at his work to try and figure it out. His subjects are mostly women who are mostly in the nude, but their nakedness is in no way presented as something explicitly erotic. It is the women’s struggle and struggling pose that draws one’s attention, It is only later that you notice that the subject is exposing more skin than absolutely necessary. Graszka currently lives and works in Warsaw, Poland.
Li Jin Hua is an excellent illustrator from China. Although I do find it just a bit odd that one of his main subjects, a dreamy pre-adolescent boy always has his eyes closed. I guess it’s probably because the places he’s in are probably just in his dreams. Li also did an excellent series featuring the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and of course Tom Sawyer. Not much more is known about this talented artist except for the fact that he is definitely a budding illustrator for children’s art books.
Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley are a couple of performance artists with extremely well-developed senses of balance. Their three collaborative performances; In Orbit, Stability, and Counterweight Roommate all involve both of them living in constructs of their own creation for days on end. In Orbit is basically a fully-furnished giant hamster wheel with Ward living in the exterior (about 30 feet off the ground) and Alex in the interior (due to his fear of heights). They access the various built-in furniture through carefully coordinated movements, thus, when one wants to go to the bathroom, the other must also do so. Stability, on the other hand, is a 25-foot structure which strongly resembles a see-saw and the artists need to move closer or further away from the fulcrum in order to keep the piece balanced. Counterweight Roommate has both artists living in a vertical ‘dorm’ and strapped to a harness. The only way for them to access any floor is for the other to act as a counterweight and go up or down as need be.
Joey Iurato is a New Jersey-based artist who is the man responsible for various tiny wooden figures casually posing in public. A turtle-riding toddler, a couple of strumming guitar players, and a few graffiti makers caught in the act – these are but a few of Joe’s creations you might stumble upon in Manhattan. In an Interview with Brooklyn Street Art, he said: “The subjects vary, but they’re all very personal – they sort of tell the story of my life in stages. From break dancing to skateboarding to rock climbing to becoming a father, all of these things have helped define my character.” He also added: “My art is nothing more than the exploration and documentation of personal experiences. It is the questions I have, the conclusions drawn, and the love, disgust, joy, and sadness I feel. I paint what I know or what I wish to understand.”
Kekai Kotaki grew up in the big and beautiful island of Hawaii. Distracted by the all the sunshine and picturesque views, he moved to Seattle to attend art school. His first artistic job was as a lowly texture artist at ArenaNet, the makers of the Guild Wars franchise. A favorable mix of talent, oodles of hard work, and a dash of luck, he was made a concept artist. He spent a little more than eight years at ArenaNet before taking a big plunge and went solo. Nowadays, he can still be found at Seattle enjoying his growing career as an illustrator. His list of clients include prestigious names like Tor, DC Comics, and National Geographic. Kekai also travels the world doing workshops.