TRADITIONAL POP ART BY JACKY TSAI

by Ariadna Zierold

jacky tsai, chinese, china, pop art, traditional, culture, upper playground

Jacky Tsai is a Chinese pop artist, creating peculiar pieces with an inventive approach to traditional materials and craftsmanship. Tsai works to establish balance and harmony between cultural extremes. His original style, featuring of references to western pop art in combination with eastern artistry re-imagines the concept of beauty to be appreciated by viewer of all different cultural heritages. Tsai works across various fields including installations, sculpture, and fashion.

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EDO BALL BY ANDREW ARCHER

by Ariadna Zierold

andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground

Andrew Archer has been an illustrator & art director for over 10 years with a true passion for basketball, art and culture. He was born in Auckland, New Zealand and grew up playing pick up basketball at the local courts. Basketball has given him so much and led him to his love of culture and art.

andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground

He moved to Asia in his mid twenties for 3 years. He played pick up basketball with people all over Asia. On rooftop’s in Hong Kong, under bridges in Bangkok and on cracked courts in the middle of Cambodia. Often Archer couldn’t speak a word of the local language but the people always welcomed him to the game. It was like family no matter where he went.

andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground

The series started in 2013 with two personal artworks Archer created, The Rock & The Ghost. These artworks were created from the love and passion of the game of Basketball, Ukiyo-e art and Japanese culture. The subjects mixed together seamlessly and were incredibly popular with the Basketball and Japanese culture communities.

andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground

andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground andrew archer, illustration, illustrator, basketball, culture, japan, edo, edo ball, ukiyo-e, upper playground

HERITAGE RECONECTION BY NATALIA ARBELAEZ

by Ariadna Zierold

natalia arbelaez, sculpture, new york, colombia, colombian, heritage, culture, dripping, melted, upper playground

New York based Natalia Arbelaez is a first generation Colombian American, born and raised in Miami, Florida. She received her B.F.A. from Florida International University and her M.F.A. with a concentration in ceramics and sculpture from The Ohio State University, where she received an Enrichment Fellowship.

natalia arbelaez, sculpture, new york, colombia, colombian, heritage, culture, dripping, melted, upper playground

“My work serves as a bridge to research my history and culture while aiming to preserve. I look to the history of Latin American and the Amerindian people; I work with how these identities are lost through conquest, migration, and time, gained through family, culture, exploration, and passed down through tradition and genetic memory. I use these influences to contribute to a contemporary dialogue while simultaneously continuing the work of my ancestors. There has been so much loss and stigma of these communities that it is important to me that my work celebrates and honors them.” Natalia Arbelaez

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‘EVERYTHING NOT SAVED WILL BE LOST’ BY JESS JOHNSON

by Ariadna Zierold

jess johnson, everything not saved will be lost, illustration, drawing, science fiction, surreal, technology, culture, complex, worlds, pattern, patterns, objects, figures, architectural, environments, new york, upper playground

Jess Johnson (previously featured here) was born in Tauranga, New Zealand in 1979. In 2016 she relocated permanently to New York after twelve years of living and working in Melbourne, Australia. Her drawing and installation practice is influenced by the speculative intersections between language, science fiction, culture and technology. In her drawings she depicts complex worlds that combine densely layered patterns, objects and figures within architectural settings.

jess johnson, everything not saved will be lost, illustration, drawing, science fiction, surreal, technology, culture, complex, worlds, pattern, patterns, objects, figures, architectural, environments, new york, upper playground

Johnson’s drawings are often displayed within constructed environments that act as physical portals into her speculative worlds. Her recent video collaborations with Simon Ward have involved translating her drawings into animated Virtual Reality, thus enabling her audience to have the simulated experience of entering the hypnotic realms depicted in her drawings.

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MODERN REALITIES BY ALEKSANDAR TODOROVIC

by Ariadna Zierold

aleksandar todorovic, serbia, culture, cultural, political, comics, pop culture, illustration, painting, modern, complex, f¡greed, upper playground

Aleksandar Todorovic is the child of the Serbian 90’s, meaning he has been exposed to a dramatic collapse of major moral and cultural values, along with the break-up of Yugoslav republic and the unfortunate war-colored years after. This period proves to be crucial in the formation of the artist’s visual language, as his learned impulse is that politicians equal evil. His style has been influenced by comics and pop culture, video games, and illustration, through which the artist endeavors in depicting the modern reality, such as it is – complex, crooked and festered with greed and ill will.

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COLOR DRIVEN ART BY MWANEL PIERRE LOUIS

by Ariadna Zierold

mwanel pierre louis, illustration, painting, paintings, miami, color, colorful, pop, culture, pop culture, realism, abstraction, people, upper playground

Mwanel Pierre-Louis is an artist and illustrator based in Miami. His work is based from a graphic and color driven language of today’s pop culture and is mixed with realism and abstraction. The work is also derives from fashion, music, and people. He’s shown his works within Art Basel Miami in Dec 2014 to Tokyo, Japan in summer of 2013. Color is driven in most of his work and as well in his life.

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RITUALS AND MYTHS BY MARTIN FERREYRA

by Ariadna Zierold

martin ferreyra, ceramics, painting, paintings, ritual, rituals, myth, latin, culture, mexico city, cordoba, argentina, identity, upper playground

Mexico City based artist Martin Ferreyra was born in the city of Cordoba, Argentina. Regarding the arts, he is mainly self-taught, participating in workshops in painting and ceramics. In recent years his work has been divided between those two, developing a personal world within his visual imagery. He has been investigating and working with concepts around identity, ritual, and myth, latent in the collective unconscious of latin culture.

martin ferreyra, ceramics, painting, paintings, ritual, rituals, myth, latin, culture, mexico city, cordoba, argentina, identity, upper playground martin_ferreyra_3 martin_ferreyra_4 martin_ferreyra_5 martin_ferreyra_6

URBAN CULTURE BY BORIS NZEBO

by Ariadna Zierold

boris nzebo, painting, cameroon, multilayered, multilayer, multilayers, west africa, urban, culture, hairstyles, portrait, portraiture, faces, upper playground

Cameroon based artist Boris Nzebo’s multilayered paintings and collages conjure the astounding visual complexity typical of the West African city. Entirely drawing his subject matter from urban culture in his hometown Douala, Nzebo invests his works with psycho geographical impulse: their primary subjects are the elaborate hairstyles of men and women, which he lays on city views as integral features of the architecture.

boris nzebo, painting, cameroon, multilayered, multilayer, multilayers, west africa, urban, culture, hairstyles, portrait, portraiture, faces, upper playground

Nzebo’s stylized execution owes a lot to painted haircut signs found outside Cameroon’s barber shops. Appropriating the language of advertising he creates portraits taken from detailed studies of traditional African hairstyles, often elaborate, and combines them with informal snapshots of local neighborhoods, urban architecture and scenes from daily life. This symbiotic connection allows for a multiplicity of readings of the image, rendering levels of information in a sort of visual polyphony that rhythmically integrates humans and the space they inhabit.

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SOCIAL JUSTICE BY MODUPEOLA FADUGBA

by Ariadna Zierold

modupeola fadugba, painting, abuja, nigeria, drawing, installation, culture, identity, social, justice, upper playground

Abuja, Nigeria based Modupeola Fadugba is a multi-media artist working in painting, drawing, and socially-engaged installation. With a background in engineering, economics, and education, she works at the nexus of science, politics, and art. Fadugba works in series addressing cultural identity, social justice, game theory, and the art world within the socio-political landscape of Nigeria and our greater global economy.

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THE WORK OF MASAMI TERAOKA

by Ariadna Zierold

masami teraoka, watercolor, painting, paintings, japan, japanese, culture, traditional, humor, funny, woodblock, print, culture, america, society, los angeles, upper playground

Los Angeles based Masami Teraoka‘s early work consisted primarily of watercolor paintings and prints that mimicked the flat, bold qualities of ukiyo-e woodblock prints. These paintings, done after his arrival in the United States, often featured the collision of the two cultures. Series such as McDonald’s Hamburgers Invading Japan and 31 Flavors Invading Japan characterize themes in the work in this time period. These pieces blended reality with fantasy, humor with commentary, history with the present.

masami teraoka, watercolor, painting, paintings, japan, japanese, culture, traditional, humor, funny, woodblock, print, culture, america, society, los angeles, upper playground

He has abandoned this style in favor of Western European religious iconography, in tune with his cultural and political critique of contemporary culture, particularly its confessional quality in America society. Teraoka’s work has been reviewed, collected and exhibited throughout the United States and abroad.

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