Aug 30, 2013
Bertozzi & Casoni
's work consists of ceramics hand-made in a realistic and richly detailed style. The two artists met while studying at the Faenza ceramic school. Giampaolo Bertozzi (Borgo Tossignano, Bologna, 1957) and Stefano Casoni (Lugo di Romagna, Ravenna, 1961) soon decided to work together and this collaboration became concrete in 1980 when they formed a society with the collective name of Bertozzi & Casoni s.n.c.: this logo was to become a symbol of their particular style. The sculptures of the two artists are both ironic and obscure, and consist of untidy trays, broken eggs, half-full overturned coffee cups, cigarette butts and old dirty newspapers; they give rise to images that provoke an alienating effect where the objects, whether common or rare, and having little to do with each other, seem to testify to modern man’s inevitable collision with consumption. They work with the most varied materials, using the industrial methods of ceramic-making, and uniting tradition and experimentation in a continuous and “contradictory” attempt to push beyond boundaries, freeing themselves from conformism and the cultural stereotypes of ceramics and so-called applied arts by an ever more sophisticated and deeper knowledge of a language that also includes techniques and materials. The works are modelled and coloured using traditional processes to be found in the Renaissance of Della Robbia and later recuperated by the Arts and Crafts movement and by Art Nouveau; to these they have added such other techniques developed by industry, graphics, and Pop Art as decals and photo-ceramics which are used in the works to create hyper-realistic effects, subtle quotations, and conceptual tricks. Amongst other interests, that in waste and its maniacal and hyper-realistic reproduction in ceramics, becomes an inquiry into aesthetic transformation, just as their analytical study of every kind of junk has led them to the most sophisticated kind of waste of all: that of culture. This has become a kind of theft from icons that are by now digested and assimilated, those belonging to the history of art and design such as the Brillo Boxes, Manzoni’s Merda d’artista, or Saarinen’s tables. Bertozzi & Casoni‘s cultural interests become products that link up on a syntagmatic plane, that of past and present time, causing to coexist, on the same level and with the same formal attention, techniques, objects, themes and clichés in an unexpected and ironically natural syncretism where decorative exuberance and the solemn artifice of sculptures made from human remains, bones, and common waste, are transformed into desecrating memento mori and eclectic post-modern vanitas. (via ArtNews
Aug 30, 2013
Born in Kirkland Lake, Ontario, Nathan James
spent much of his life in the Toronto area before moving to London, UK where he currently lives and works. His current series of paintings, Creepshow, is based on the idea of Pessimist Pop. A reaction to the highly-polished, busy, celebratory work of Koons, Murakami et al, James' paintings deal in the same sort of bold shapes and cultural iconography, but look at the underbelly of these images and contextualizes them in a real, unforgiving world. Painting in oil (often making his own paints) onto canvas or linen, James focuses on the lives and worlds of the underclass, failures, perverts and slackers, rather than beautiful, successful people. Bleak comedy and personal tragedy sit uncomfortably close together in James' characters, which draw on both the failed industrial background of his childhood and the current mood of insecurity and paranoia present in contemporary society. Joining up an almost old-fashioned, painterly approach to his art with very modern ideas of representation and humour, Creepshow is both deeply personal and also a document of lives, habits, problems and people who modern art usually overlooks.
Aug 29, 2013
" The figures in my paintings offer themselves to be felt; their vulnerability as flesh is bared and opened. Orifices and protuberances create sites at which the skin outside meets with the skin inside, forming a continuous passage between the two that eradicates their distinct positions. These grotesques become border creatures, defined by indeterminate boundaries that merge, overflow, and extend into the surrounding landscape. Despite their potentially alienating monstrosity, these characters strive to connect with each other and their environment. Their acts of singing, loving, whistling, stargazing, and wandering suggest attempts to become united with their surroundings through a state of perpetual wonder. As these characters achieve such unity, the world that opens itself to them is one full of growth and decay, shifting and transforming with their every extension. My work shows death as integral to the world of these border creatures. Rather than celebrating death itself, however, I seek to make bearable a recognition of its deep connection to life. It is in this hope that I offer an exploration of the body as open, vulnerable, and on the threshold of boundlessness." - Adrian Cox
Aug 29, 2013
(b. 1956, Cork, Ireland) works in a variety of media including sculpture, photography, video and installation. She has been exhibiting regularly since the mid-80s and her witty and inventive investigations of contemporary sexual mores and politics tend to be produced in series. Her first major solo shows were 'Ebb', at the Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin, in 1988, and 'Powerhouse' at the ICA, Philadelphia, the Hyde Gallery and Camden Arts Centre, London, in 1991. During the 90's she produced two extended series of sculptural works, using cured cowhide and stuffed snakes respectively, which drew on these animals' rich store of symbolic associations across cultures to investigate the construction of sexuality and subjectivity. Over the past few years Cross has devoted increasing amounts of time to the development of large-scale public events and projects, most memorably the award-winning 'Ghost Ship', an ethereally illuminated light-ship, which haunted Dublin Bay for a few weeks in 1998.
Aug 28, 2013
(B. 1980) is a painter, photographer and graphic designer living in San Francisco, California. Filled with contrast, his work is primarily figurative. Bleak and colorful, it focuses on urban and desert landscapes of the American West Coast. Cinematic-like scenes serve as stylized historical records of place, time and architecture as well as settings for surreal narratives. A self taught painter, his background includes studies in business, graphic design, photography and a career in printing before committing to fine art full-time in 2009. Alec was raised in California, Alaska, Texas, Scotland and spent his 20's in Seattle, Washington. He is also the founder and principal of Adult Flavored Pudding, an art and design entity of a more contemporary nature.