FLUID CHARACTERS BY JOSE MERTZ

by Ariadna Zierold

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Miami based artist Jose Mertz is an illustrator/street artist who focuses on pushing an experimental original style with inspirations coming from ancient civilizations and their teachings, science fiction, Eastern philosophy, dreams, myth and the supernatural, expressing his vision about the human condition.

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Mertz takes us to the deepest realms of the mind, reveals the complexity of human emotions, deconstructs and reconstructs his fluid characters and opens the door to new dimensions and endless possibilities of perceiving and interacting with our inner and surrounding reality.

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PSYCHEDELIC LANDSCAPES BY HIDEYUKI KATSUMATA

by Ariadna Zierold

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Hideyuki Katsumata‘s meticulous and colored works are tinged with a psychedelic aesthetic and invite us into an exuberant universe inhabited by mutant characters and monsters with multiple limbs and eyes, robots, UFOs and dragons. The scenery he has created is influenced by both Asian mythology and manga culture.

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Demons, spirits, and creatures of strange possessions all engaging in odd scenes, erotic activities, and vulgar moments – all abound in Katsumata’s expressive compositions. He fills each piece of work with whimsical colors, brisk line work reminiscent of old comics, and scale that leaves you flipping through for more.

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RAW ILLUSTRATIONS BY CHRIS BODILY

by Ariadna Zierold

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Ogden-based Chris Bodily‘s illustrated and cartoon-like works containing beyond-normal children and and an array of creatures and monsters have been a fixture of the local art scene since becoming a professional freelance artist right out of college, earning him a place in several exhibitions.

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Bodily’s illustrations are simultaneously raw, funny, messy, cartoonish, and heartbreaking. A big goofy monster holding prescriptions and wanting his heart to be seen with allusions to happiness scribbled on the wall says volumes about the human condition.

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CHILDREN FACING MODERN TECHNOLOGY BY KRISTIAN JONES

by Ariadna Zierold

kristian jones, illustration, children , technology, surreal, innocence, characters, upper playground, birmingham, uk

Check out this selection of the creations by Kristian Jones, a British illustrator featuring children facing our modern technology. Jones is a freelance illustrator / artist living in the centre of the UK just outside of sunny Birmingham, producing work for magazines, clothing ranges and working for various bands and clubnights on the Birmingham music scene crafting posters and artwork of an alternative nature. His style preys on the innocence of childhood imagination, surreal worlds and fictional creatures.

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ROBOTIC CREATURES BY NATHAN OTA

by Ariadna Zierold

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For years, Nathan Ota has been pursuing new worlds, both dark and fantastic, to explore in his paintings. Ota has used his stand-ins – a blind bird, a drunk monkey, a one-eyed robot lost in the woods – to travel through dreamlands that hold fantasies and tragedies.

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His early influences came from television cartoons, comic books, photographs and punk rock flyers. Classical art never really interested him so he turned to work by artists he could really relate to: Robert Williams, Olivia, Puss Head, Raymond Pettibon. In high school, Nathan always found himself gravitating toward popular culture—then he discovered graffiti. He still dabbled a little in graffiti once he entered Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California, but a whole new world of art was unfolding before his eyes with illustration. Ota didn’t know what he wanted to do when he entered college and left it to the hands of the instructors to lead him in some direction. That’s when he became an illustrator.

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TWISTS ON CONVENTIONAL FANTASY BY JON BOAM

by Ariadna Zierold

jon boam, illustration, characters, humor, surreal, comical, fantasy, childlike, scenes, upper playground

Many of Jon Boam’s characters sport animal heads or conical hats, but his fascination with otherworldly architecture, his twists on conventional fantasy designs and his unsettling cyborg creations add a richer, darker note to his illustrations. Simple, almost child-like images grow out into intricate narratives, and almost-familiar characters find themselves in unexpected scenes.

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His illustrations play with complex eccentricities, blending architecture and biology in a single character design, packing his subjects with outlandish objects and inviting us to guess at their purpose, and taking a simple scene and adding two degrees of weirdness where one would be comfortable. He makes it difficult to separate the technological from the mystical and figure out where humans end and machines begin.

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AMAZING JUXTAPOSITIONS BY YOSUKE UENO

by Ariadna Zierold

yosuke ueno, illustration, painting, japanese, pop, surrealism, colorful, detailed, juxtaposition, symbolism, characters, upper playground

Yosuke Ueno is a self-taught Japanese artist, working in the style of pop surrealism. Born in Japan in 1977, he has been creating his unique and colorful world since his early age, and as a result Ueno’s first solo exhibition was in 1994 in Yamaguchi, when he was just 16 years old.

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Weird, creepy but in a beautiful kind of way, Ueno’s art stands out for its interesting juxtapositions and hidden symbolism. Skulls, swans, scissors and amazing characters appear in his paintings, making you wonder what kind of hidden message they all carry.

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