Summer Attraction. Maz Dixon

Ah, summer.  That time of year when you can relish the craziest, corniest of adventures.  Like finally hitting up that kitschy old-timey amusement park or road tripping to see the world’s largest ball of twine.  In her work, Australian artist Maz Dixon explores the dichotomy of our expectations of destinations versus our experience.

Maz Dixon | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Maz Dixon | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Maz Dixon | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Maz Dixon | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Maz Dixon | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 

While making our way from Florida to Washington three years ago, Mr. Forager and I took the time to stop at a couple of crazy touristy spots.  We were really disappointed when Prairie Dog Town was closed! Ha.  Dixon’s work makes me think more of those spots we visited as children, the ones that were so magical and fascinating.. How often, when we go back as adults, have they lost their luster?

To see more work by Maz Dixon, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website.

Artsy Happening. Continental Shift Seattle

We can all relate to being a part of a non-traditional family.  Whether you’re a member of a blended “step” family, the parent or child in a same-sex led family, or have created your own definition of a family made up of friends you love and trust.  Being a part of two blended families, I was especially excited when Seattle artist Amy Pleasant told me about a project she’s been working on, Continental Shift Seattle.

Continental Shift Seattle | artsy forager #art #artists #galleryshows #contemporaryart

Continental Shift Seattle is an art exhibition exploring the dynamics of stepfamilies, broadly defined to include adoptive families, LGBT families, children raised by their grandparents or aunts/uncles.

Spencer Merolla, Continental Shift Seattle | artsy forager #art #artists

Continental Shift Seattle | artsy forager #art #artists #galleryshows #contemporaryart Continental Shift Seattle | artsy forager #art #artists #galleryshows #contemporaryart Continental Shift Seattle | artsy forager #art #artists #galleryshows #contemporaryart

 

The show and online forum explore this increasingly common family dynamic, how we deal with it individually and as families.  The exhibition opens this Saturday, August 9th at the Georgetown Castle in Seattle.  A one-night only exhibition featuring paintings, sculpture, mixed media, a one-act play, and multi-media featuring submissions from experiences submitted by the public.

Be sure to check out the Continental Shift Seattle website and if you’re in the Seattle area, check out the show for yourself this weekend!

All images via the Continental Shift Seattle website.

Being Present. Yolanda Sanchez

One of the hardest states for us to find is being completely present.  Thoughts of the past, the  future, distractions, all tend to cloud our minds and detour us away from simply living in the given moment.  In her paintings, Miami Beach artist Yolanda Sanchez celebrates the joy in the present moment.

Yolanda Sanchez | artsy forager #art #artists #abstractart #contemporaryart #paintings Yolanda Sanchez | artsy forager #art #artists #abstractart #contemporaryart #paintings Yolanda Sanchez | artsy forager #art #artists #abstractart #contemporaryart #paintings Yolanda Sanchez | artsy forager #art #artists #abstractart #contemporaryart #paintings http://blog.isavirtue.net/2014/06/art-mantle-art-artsy-forager.html?spref=fb

 

Taking inspiration from nature, Sanchez creates paintings that are fleeting glimpses into the feeling of a particular place in one instance.  The play of color and light are never quite the same any time we revisit a place and her use of visual texture and movement within each work recall the ephemeral nature of the present.

To see more of Yolanda Sanchez‘s work, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website.

Collected Treasures. Jennifer Steen Booher

When I was a little girl in Florida, I always remember my mom collecting shells every time we went to the beach.  She wasn’t( still isn’t ) a swimmer, but she loved going to the beach and finding treasures.  Maybe it’s where my foraging instincts come from?  Maine photographer Jennifer Steen Booher creates abstract portraits of a day’s experience and what was found.

Jennifer Steen Booher | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Jennifer Steen Booher | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Jennifer Steen Booher | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart

prints available in The Trove, Artsy Forager’s Great.ly gallery

Jennifer Steen Booher | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart Jennifer Steen Booher | artsy forager #art #artists #photography #contemporaryart

 

Whether the beauty of the craggy texture of a shell, or the shocking color of a piece of discarded plastic, each piece is a symbol of that particular instance, isolated against a bright white backdrop, even the ugliest trash becomes something special.  After she has collected her treasures, Booher takes them back to her studio where they are carefully, meticulously arranged.  The collections may seem random and haphazard, yet the artist’s eye finds common ground.

To see more of Jennifer Steen Booher’s work, please visit her website.  Prints of Clematis Seedhead and other work by Jennifer Steen Booher can be purchased in The Trove, my gallery on Great.ly!

This post contains affiliate links.  As a Great.ly Tastemaker and curator of The Trove, I receive a small commission on each piece sold from The Trove boutique gallery.

Soft Geometry. Ruth Hiller

It feels like such a hard world these days, doesn’t it?  It can be a challenge to find a bit of softness.  Colorado artist Ruth Hiller juxtaposes industrially crafted plywood with brightly colored organic beeswax, creating a happy softness among the hard edges.

Ruth Hiller | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #contemporaryart Ruth Hiller | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #contemporaryart Ruth Hiller | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #contemporaryart Ruth Hiller | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #contemporaryart Ruth Hiller | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #contemporaryart

 

I love the kind of California-surfer-cool vibe to these.  The summery colors against the wood grain have a mod, beach house feel.  The graphic nature also seems to nod to visual identifiers like signs and flags.  Whatever wave she is riding, sign me up!

To see more of Ruth Hiller‘s work, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website and Facebook page.

What’s Left. Erik Mattijssen

I can always tell when Mr. F has been in a room.. usually a light is on, a cabinet door open, a hand towel wadded up.  It drives my little neurotic mind crazy, but I secretly love it.  These are the signs that there is another life here with me, one that is a bit messy at times, but sometimes our neatly organized lives need a bit of messing about.  In these paintings by Dutch artist Erik Mattijssen is that same feeling of spaces occupied by a life just left.

Erik Mattijssen | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Erik Mattijssen | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Erik Mattijssen | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Erik Mattijssen | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Erik Mattijssen | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 

The elements of these lives at still may sometimes seem a bit incongruous, strange combinations of objects and arrangements.  But isn’t life like that?  As much as we like to Instagram the perfectly arranged and styled moments in our lives, at any given instance life is full of these kinds of odd arrangements.

If you’d like to see more work by Erik Mattijssen, please visit his website.

All images are via the artist’s website.

August Featured Artist. Gigi Mills

Can you believe we’re entering into the last lazy days of summer, Artsies?  I hardly can, but I intend to enjoy it to the fullest!  Beginning the end of summer today with the marvelous work of this month’s Featured Artist, Gigi Mills!

Gigi Mills | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

studio dog with girl and chair, oil, paper, crayon, and graphite on paper, 19×22

Gigi Mills | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

bird dog and the saint, oil and paper on book board, mounted on panel, 9×22

Gigi Mills | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

morning with sara, oil on book board, mounted on panel, 14 1/8 x 22 1/8

Gigi Mills | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

seaside in a wicker chair, oil on book board, mounted on panel, 10×17

Gigi Mills | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 girl with figs and flowers, oil on book board, mounted on panel, 6×17

In this latest series of work, being featured in her solo show, This Life at GF Contemporary, Mills invites us to sit and contemplate the moment in the midst of the pulse and entanglements of this fast paced existence.  The artist continues to perfect her reductive style, distilling each captured moment to its fleeting presence.

To see more of Gigi Mills’ work, please visit the websites of her representing galleries, GF Contemporary and Gallery Orange and here on the blog all August long!  Be sure to check out the Artsy Forager Facebook page to see an album of my Gigi faves!

All images are via the artist.

Breaking Good. Kate Tucker

As artists, often what we want to express can’t be contained between the four straight lines of a canvas.  So artists like Australian artist Kate Tucker push the boundaries of surface and form, leading to paintings that seem to break free from their molds, even as those same structures hold them in place.

Kate Tucker | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Kate Tucker | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Kate Tucker | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Kate Tucker | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Kate Tucker | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

 

Even paintings framed in a traditional way seem liberated when incorporated into an installation of shards of compositions.  Each painting reflects the installation, which reflects the painting.  It’s like a wonderful tale of deliberate chaos.

To see more of Kate Tucker‘s work, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website.  Artist found via Art Hound.

Some Kind of Wonderful. Carola Schapals

For artists, inspiration lurks around every corner.  And sometimes, what we find amazing one day isn’t quite as captivating the next.  There’s something about that certain moment in time, the light, the shadows, the color, that enchants us, but may be as fleeting as the wind.  In her work, German artist Carola Schapals captures the moments that touch her, the scenes in which there is a hint of something wonderful.

Carola Scharpals | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Carola Scharpals | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Carola Scharpals | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Carola Scharpals | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart Carola Scharpals | artsy forager #art #artists #paintings #contemporaryart

I love the way Schapals captures the colorful evanescence in the way the light is falling at that given moment.  A few minutes later and the mood of each scene could be completely different.  There is something utterly magical in the capturing of atmosphere and she’s done it so very beautifully, with deep shadows and dappled light.

To see more work by Carola Schapals, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website.  Artist found via The Jealous Curator.

Splendor in the Glass. Amber Cowan

I have a soft spot for vintage pressed glass.  My grandmother had tons and in a few boxes in storage somewhere, I have my own collection of milk glass.  So when I spotted the work of Philadelphia artist Amber Cowan, I was immediately in love.

Amber Cowan | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #glass #contemporaryart Amber Cowan | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #glass #contemporaryart Amber Cowan | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #glass #contemporaryart Amber Cowan | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #glass #contemporaryart Amber Cowan | artsy forager #art #artists #sculpture #glass #contemporaryart

Cowan creates her magical sculptures from a process of flameworking, blowing, and hot-sculpting thrifted American pressed glass.  The most amazing form of creative upcycling!  With its tightly bunched flora and peek-a-boo fauna, Cowan’s work takes on a wonderfully gothic, fairy tail-like effect, like intricate illustrations come to life.

To see more of Amber Cowan‘s work, please visit her website.

All images are via the artist’s website.

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