Category Archives: Drawing

Collage as bas-relief: Handiedan’s contemporary Pin-ups

Italy-icon Berlin, Bülowstrasse 7 at the intersection with Zietenstrasse. A gigantic pin-up overlooks the passengers of the elevated railway with a languidly winking gaze. The weathpaste by Dutch Handiedan inaugurated last September as part of the initiatives organized by Urban nation. It covers the whole surface of the building and can be seen as an oversized version of Handiedan‘s astonishing art.

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Of leaves, marker drawings and paper dolls: Tang Chiew Ling

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To stumble upon Tang Chiew Ling graceful art is almost a case of serendipity for me, because a few things that recently attracted me combine harmoniously in her work – specifically what an artist can do with leaves (see the work by Hillary Fayle), make up with a few marks on a white background (see the work by Rafael Mantesso)  and some miniaturized paper dolls (see the work by Jorge Miranda).

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Ricardo Solís’s animal creation tales

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The adorable work of Mexican Ricardo Solís depicts a personal version of the myth of animal creation. Solís draws on his child’s imagination and transposes on canvas his whimsical and amusingly bizarre hypothesis on why animal species look the way they are.

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I Saw a Peacock with a Fiery Tail – Tara Books (1)

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The illustrated book I Saw a Peacock with a Fiery Tail is an illustrated gem published in 2010 by the amazing Tara Books. To have it on my bookshelves is a powerful reminder of the incredible richness that experiencing a book can offer.

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Solar art by Jon Marro

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Artist Jon Marro has coined the definition ‘Solar Art for his practice. Marro believes that art can be illuminating for our soul just like the sun provides light to our material existence.

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An endless inner journey with David Shillinglaw

I can’t count how many times I was on the verge to write about David Shillinglaw‘s art and than I stopped myself. Or rather, the more I delved into his work the more I found myself ‘lost’ in an endless play of mental associations and enjoyable abstract wanderings.

1000faces800-700x700It all started with The Dance of 1000 Faces, a book that ‘celebrates the artwork and adventures of David Shillinglaw‘ from 2010 to 2012. His journal drawings, wall murals and paintings look immediately joyful and funny. gambia

The artist creates an universe of faces with multiplied eyes and broad grins, complex labyrinths of lines and marks. An overall joyful chaos emanates from every work.  tumblr_mh50n3EjXN1qevix0o1_500gambia2

The book also collects numerous journal drawings. Each of them represents a stylized face filled with either single words or full statements. Through a heap of marks and words the overall effect reminds of the medieval horror vacui, with its tendency to occupy every corner of an artwork for fear of emptiness. david-shillinglaw-22 The word mind-map has never sounded more suitable than here. The features of the faces are filled with an explosion of words as if they were the many thoughts and feelings flowing in the artist’s mind. Sometimes the words describe a part of the face, but more often they contain personal references like dates, things to do, but also fast thoughts, creeping feelings and sharply original plays with words. areyoulost800-700x694

But do not try to interpret the character of David Shillinglaw from this. The flowing of words seems to correspond to his personal free-wheeling associative threads that no objective logics can cage. Shillinglaw is perfectly comfortable with the mental chaos that a trip in the subconscious can cause, and with his work we can try to reach the same state.

thewhitemonkey_web_800Instead of trying to enter into his personal universe, these drawings allow for a similar exercise of imagination but applied to ourselves, not to the artist that created them. And, while happily lost in these mind-maps, I found myself humming two different songs by Devendra Banhart (a songwriter that I personally adore) only because I singled out some words. Or smiling at my own personal associations triggered by something in the pieces. It does not matter what these imaginative connections were. You will find yours, and this is the best part of experiencing David Shillinglaw’s The Dance of 1000 Facesjazztrance800-e1350855979141

When you feel like expanding your own inner explorations, The Dance of 1000 Faces is a great travel companion.

More of David Shillinglaw‘s fantastic art on his website. If you want to buy your own copy of The Dance of 1000 Faces you can find it here.

Thanks to David Shillinglaw for the images.

The magic art of paper marbling

Through a video by Turkish filmaker Oguz Uygur I discovered Ebru (the art of paper marbling), the magic of which is in its making…

With this video, Oguz Uygur celebrates his parents’ amazing craft in creating paper marbling. The shots concentrate on the slow and delicate gestures required for creating richly delicate images, the effect in the background resembling the organic streaks in marble. But the wonder that this ancient form of art holds fully reveals itself in the process of making. The inks are skilfully applied in a shallow tray with water. The colours gently float and spread on the surface, while the hand of the artist wisely shape the inks into patterns and shapes, with a perfect balance between evanescence and thickness. With the help of ink brushes, combs and other tools (some Ebru artists even resort to human hair), the ink blots are gently and almost impalpably manipulated. These thorough and minute gestures suggest an artistry acquired with patience and discipline, but filled with meditative grace. (via The Atlantic)