Archive of ‘Figurative’ category
Mr. F and I are generally cheerful, non-moody people, but we each have what we call our “blah” days. You know the ones, the days when you just aren’t feeling quite yourself, the days when all you want to do is curl up in bed, speak to no one and watch trash tv all day. These paintings by French artist Lou Ros struck me in their contemplation and moodiness, beautifully painted representations of melancholy.
From the use of a primarily grey and neutral palette with punctuations of pink and other vibrant colors, we’re reminded that although the grey sets in temporarily, it is by no means permanent. I love the artist’s use of frenetic brushwork and drips, the slightly “unfinished” quality to each piece accentuating the fleeting nature of mood.
To see more work by Lou Ros, please visit the artist’s website.
All images via the artist’s website. Artist found via The Artful Desperado.
Oh the sun drenched days of summer! It’s February and while I love winter and don’t mind the misty rain and clouds of the Northwest, I do love those lazy summer days. These watercolors by Oakland artist JD Olerud, transport me back to those days when the sun wasn’t such a stranger.
There is something about watercolor as a medium that captures the magic of dappled sunlight so perfectly. Olerud using his white spaces to create that wonderful sense of the warmth and light of a summer day. I almost feel like squinting or wearing sunglasses when looking at these! Oh to lie down in the grass and feel the radiant light once more! Of course, Mr. F and I will be spending the next three months on the soggy Northern California coast, so I expect it will be some time unit l get to experience that bliss.
To see more of JD Olerud‘s work, please visit his website.
All images via the artist’s website. Artist found via Little Paper Planes.
Do you truly remember what it was like to be a completely innocent child? Free from guile and not yet succumbed to the pressures of the adult world? For so many, that innocence is taken away at a younger and younger age. This series of photographs by French artist Isabelle Chapuis illustrates the striking juxtaposition between the push and pull of childhood innocence and the lurking aggression of adulthood beneath the surface.
When left to their own devices and free from outside pressure, kids will be kids. All they want to do is play games, eat candy, enjoy and revel in a world without responsibility. But in so many cultures, including our own, children are being raised with the expectation of becoming tiny versions of the adults by whom they are surrounded. The overachieving mom expects her daughter to excel in every way, the young boy growing up around gang culture finds it hard to buck against those influences.
There is a sadness about these photographs, even when the boy is taking a more “aggressive” stance, it seems to be a putting on of an act– there is a true feeling of reluctance and hesitation in each photo. He seems to be a boy who is being coerced into a world in which he doesn’t belong, a child who only wants to enjoy the sweetness of life while it is still possible to do so. Adulthood comes calling soon enough, unfortunately sooner for some than others.
To see more of Isabelle Chapuis’ work, please visit her website.
All images are via the artist’s website.
OK, I admit it. I like fashion and all its trappings as much as the next girl. But there is something that doing this traveling thing is teaching me– how to not just live with less, but to desire less. I found these collages by Jonni Cheatwood, acrylic and mixed media applied to the pages of a Neiman Marcus catalog to call attention to our need to chase the latest trend.
As a single girl, I was definitely a bit of a fashionista. Always a bargain shopper, I didn’t spend massive amounts of money, but being single, I had a lot of time to spend hunting down just the right pair of boots or the latest jacket cut. But when we prepared to embark across the country and begin traveling, I had to pare down like crazy and then before we left Seattle, I had to purge even more ( everything we live with right now fits in the back of our car ) and it was painful. Clothes had been such a crutch for me– you see, when I was young, I knew what it felt like to be the girl in class in the hand-me-down clothes, the girl who only got one new outfit for the first day of school, not an entirely new, on-trend wardrobe. So when I was an adult and earning my own way, fashion wasn’t just an indulgence for me, it was a way to get past the feeling of being the girl with the holes in her shoes.
We still find we need to pare down just a touch more, so more purging is occurring. What I’m learning through this process is that there are certain items of clothing I own that I love, not because they are in keeping with the latest trends, but because I love the way they fit, the way the clothes look on me and, most importantly, how I feel in them. Paring down to just what I love is a perfect way to ensure that every piece of clothing is worn and that I feel beautiful and special in everything in my closet. Shopping is hard to resist still, but when I do indulge, it is for something that I know I’ll love and feel good in for years to come. And with the paring down, it has to replace at least one ( preferably two! ) things already in my closet. Not as much thought goes into choosing an outfit for the day, freeing my mind to concentrate on other things and cultivate new, more important ideas. When you chase trends, fashion changes so much, you’re constantly feeding the need for the latest thing. I’d rather fill my life with things that aren’t so easily replaceable.
How about you, Artsies? Are any of you recovering fashion-addicts? How did you overcome?
To see more of Jonni Cheatwood‘s work, please visit his website.
All image via the artist’s website.
I love writing this blog so much. One of my favorite reasons? An excuse to follow the artistic journey of so many amazing artists. California artist Clare Elsaesser was among some of the first artists featured on Artsy Forager and her work just continues to evolve and grow. This latest body of work is so stunning, I couldn’t wait any longer to give you a peek.
Clare’s work is moving into a more complex, narrative direction with these, yet still retaining the simplicity and graphic style that is her artistic trademark. There is so much visual texture and depth and the emotionality that is always present in her work really takes center stage. It feels like we are being given short glimpses into not just a moment in physical existence, but a visceral, intimate look into the spirit of a moment.
To see more of Clare Elsaesser‘s work, please visit her website. Prints of Clare’s work are available in her Etsy shop!
Our memories of the people we love aren’t full scale photos, but more the recollections of the details that made them special to us– the softness of a grandmother’s hand, the freckles on a child’s face, the little particulars that make us unique. In his work, New York painter Stephen Wright gently records the minutia of a face, a lock of hair, the turn of a neck.
Occasionally, when we sitting together, holding hands while watching Colbert or a movie, I am struck suddenly by the realization that when we’re old and perhaps Mr. F is no longer around, that my hands will remember what his felt like around mine. That those physical memories will be more precious than any photograph could be.
Stephen Wright zeroes in on the minor details of his subjects bodies, we get the sense that we can almost feel what that skin is like, soft, maybe cool to the touch, or we feel the sharpness of a clavicle, the roughness of hair gone grey. I love that his compositions often crop out the subject’s face, after all, we know the hands, feet, the shoulders of our loved ones just as well as their faces, but often fail to really think about how integral they are to our memories of them. What about you, Artsies? What details do you remember most about those you love? I can still smell my grandmother’s perfume and know every freckle on my niece’s cheeks!
To see more of the work of Stephen Wright, please visit his website.
All images are via the artist’s website.
Edward Hopper‘s body of work is one revered and admired by many artists and art lovers, including this Forager. New York photographer Richard Tuschman found himself drawn to the painter’s method of visual storytelling, saying so much with so very little. He created the series Hopper Meditations as an homage to the renowned artist’s work, yet these are not exact recreations, Tuschman tells Hopper’s stories in much of his own language.
The paintings of Edward Hopper focus on scenes from the stories that unfold in everyday life and just as minutia takes center stage, Tuschman methodically recreates Hopper’s compositions creating dioramas into which figures are painstakingly photoshopped. It isn’t surprising that a photographer should find such inspiration in the work of Hopper, his paintings having an almost photographic, slice-of-life style of composition. Yet, in Tuschman’s images, there is a softness to the light and a warmth to the palette that yields a sense of intimacy to the scenes, whereas Hopper’s originals seem much more cooly detached.
To see more of Richard Tuschman‘s work, please visit his website.
All images are via the artist’s website.
I’m a Southern girl. You may not know that about me, since we’ve been all over the Northwest during most of Artsy Forager’s existence. OK some may not include Florida as the Deep South, but North Florida is pretty dang close to South Georgia, which is pretty dang Southern. Mr. F is a Southern boy and while we definitely feel more at home in the Northwest, there are things about the South that are so incredibly identifiable and iconic, that only Southerners, whether by birth or transplant, truly understand. Artist Jon Davenport came to the US South by way of the UK where he grew up well versed in Southern iconography, but it wasn’t until he was fully immersed in its culture that he began his artistic exploration of distinctly Southern tastes.
Jon, who shares a similar style to his wife, this month’s Featured Artist Christy Kinard, creates heavily textured, layered work filled with vintage advertising imagery much of which built up our ideas about life in the South, for better or for worse. Some of these icons can still be seen as faded paintings on the sides of buildings, especially in small Southern towns. In many ways, there is a fierce desire to hold onto the past in the South, where Sunday dinners at grandma’s and yes ma’am and no ma’am are still the norm.
Yet behind the fun and frivolity and charm, there was a darkness that would best be forgotten and which many Southern cities are still fighting to overcome. Many strive to overcome lingering stereotypes and “Ol’ Boys Networks”, while seeking to maintain the best of what it means to be a part of what has been a troubled region. Davenport’s work with its bright but slightly faded palette and layered drips and splotches of paint remind us that time marches on, ideals fade, but hopefully what is left is our favorite, most positive parts of ourselves.
To see more of Jon Davenport‘s work, please visit his website. His work can be seen in his solo show at Matre Gallery in Atlanta through February 8th. Stay tuned over the next few days for interviews with Jon & Christy in a special “He Said, She Said” feature on what it’s like to be half of a creative couple!
All images are via the artist’s website.
Mr. Forager and I are without a home. We have a roof over our heads always, but as we move from furnished rental to furnished rental, none of them are actually home. A place that is ours, filled with our own tastes and personalities. In a way, it is incredibly freeing– if we had a home to decorate, believe me, I would spend waaay too much time doing so! This idea of creating a beautiful, comfortable home has been around for centuries and continues to be perpetuated and heightened today by magazines, blogs, and social media. The burden of home-making, often self-inflicted, usually falls to women. In her Anonymous Women: Draped series, photographer Patty Carroll explores the idea that we become so obsessed with creating a perfect space that we lose ourselves in the process.
From the artist’s website, “I am addressing the double edge of domesticity; the home as a place of comfort, or conversely, a place where decoration camouflages one’s individuality to the point of claustrophobia“. Or to the point of invisibility. If, like me, you’re a reader of interior design blogs, think about the homes you see– don’t they all kind of look a bit alike? We follow trends and take hold of popular styles, never really considering whether or not it truly reflects who we are. I look back on some of my own choices and wonder, who was I? The answer– I had no clue who I was, so my choices reflected that lost sense of self.
And its not only in decorating our homes that we lose ourselves, but in fashion, work, tradition, emotion, even as members of larger groups, we immerse ourselves, taking on characteristics that may not otherwise have been a part of who we are. Then, its only when we separate ourselves that we realize that the entire time we felt that sense of belonging, we, as individuals, were actually lost.
More work by Patty Carroll can be seen on her website– please do check it out!
All images are via the artist’s website. Artist found via Trendland.
Thumbing through an old photo album. Spending an afternoon sifting through the contents of a cedar chest. These are things I took for granted before we started traveling. I’m even a bit envious of friends posting childhood photos of themselves all over Instagram for “throwback Thursdays”. All of my nostalgic ephemera is tucked away in a storage unit in Seattle. So I couldn’t help gushing over the work of Berkley artist Jane Hambleton whose mixed media pieces layer together glimpses of time into collected memories.
Beautifully textured, these created fragments seem torn from life’s scrapbook. Sweet, momentary glimpses into a day, a summer, a moment that may have long been forgotten. Each piece is lovely on its own, but when put together into installations, as the artist intends for each series, we see not only black and white memories, but blank canvases of color. Perhaps these are the times that aren’t specifically remembered, yet in our minds they are still colored with feeling.
To see more work by Jane Hambleton, please visit her website or the website of her representing gallery, Seager Gray Gallery.
All images via the artist’s or gallery’s website.