Wow! This is an afternoon tea menu I would like to experience! London’s Rosewood hotel is launching a special pastry menu paying homage to five of the world’s most celebrated modern artists. They are part of the Art Afternoon Tea and include art-inspired pastries created after Yayoi Kusama, Damien Hirst, Alexander Calder, Banksy and Mark Rothko.
These amazing portraits are all created with embroidery. For each artwork, what you see here is, the front and back of the same embroidery. Cayce Zavaglia is an Australian artist, who originally trained as a painter, but switched to embroidery a few years ago. The work is all hand sewn using cotton and silk thread or embroidery wool.
She says: “A few years ago, I turned one of my embroideries over and for the first time saw the possibilities of a new image and path for my work that had been with me in the studio for so long but had gone unnoticed. It was the presence of another portrait that visibly was so different from the meticulously sewn front image…but perhaps more psychologically profound. The haphazard beauty found in this verso image created a haunting contrast to the front image and was a world of loose ends, knots, and chaos that could easily translate into the world of paint.”
She then decided to return to painting and trying to render these very interesting “reverse” images.
This is the work of multi-disciplinary Chinese artist Xu Zhen, who lives and works in Shanghai. It looks like ceramic, or cake frosting, but it is actually oil paint. Dried oil paint. I am thinking, these luscious artworks must take, literally, years to dry…
“The paintings from Xu’s ongoing Under Heaven series are a voluptuary dream. He applies a thick layer of oil paint to a canvas and then forms delicate petals and flowers using a cake decorator. The resulting impasto creates a striking relief, tempting the viewer to touch or even taste. The expansive title, Under Heaven, is a literal translation of a Chinese word meaning “the whole world.” The sumptuous surfaces as well as the allusive title make the works an intense sensual experience.”
This what I call ephemeral art. Not sure who is the creator, but it is beautiful.
How amazing is the fantastic world of Travis Louie, an American artist from New York! Inspired by the Victorian and Edwardian age, the artist’s characters – humans, animals, weird beasts and otherworldly creatures – are depicted like having their formal portraits taken, but in unusual circumstances.
The artist says about his work: “I think the human race is full of misunderstandings based on people holding too close to their own cultures and being unable to embrace the idea that people can believe in other things and still get along in a reasonable sort of way.” He adds that he created these characters as a sort of “veiled commentary on racism and the immigrant experience”.
Scott Albrecht is a graphic design trained artist from Brooklyn. I just love his abstract typography work, especially the colorful pieces from the collection titled New Translations. The works are largely based in typography, meaning they contain words which are not clearly legible. At first you just think it is patterns, but then you realize you can see parts of words.
The specific woodworks are the result of an extensive process that starts with a hand-rendered drawing and requires hours of precision production work. Each piece is made up of dozens, sometimes hundreds of individual pieces that are cut, sanded, painted and re-assembled, often in varied depths.
Albrecht’s work in general incorporates elements of woodworking, hand-drawn typography, geometric collage, using vintage printed ephemera and found objects.
I love the vintage heroes of Alex Gross, a visual artist from Los Angeles, California. In his – mixed media – Heroes series, he paints over old photographs, transforming the characters into superheroes or iconic characters from pop culture like Batman, Wonder Woman, Marge Simpson or Star Wars characters.
Strandbeest means ‘Beach Beasts’ in Dutch. Artist Theo Jansen has been occupied creating these new forms of ‘life’ since 1990. He constructs amazing kinetic sculptures/skeletons from plastic yellow tubes that appear to ‘walk’ on the wind. And they don’t use electricity!
The skeletons look like they are alive! They crawl, walk and basically mimic the movements of animals like a caterpillar or an elephant. The structures have parts that resemble to human muscles and nerves, which allow them to react and respond to surroundings.
If you happen to be in the Netherlands, Jansen’s next exhibition will be held at the Museum Prinsenhof Delft in November.