STUART SNODDY PAINTS FANTASIES

by Ariadna Zierold

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Midwest based painter Stuart Snoddy works on paper and on canvas. He moves between the wistful and the contemplative.

stuart snoddy, painting, midwest, fantasy, faces, portrait, portraiture, colorful, vibrant, upper playground

“I paint fantasy. I paint the fantasy of me. This is my story complete with the screw-ups, the pleasures, and the pleasant fictions. Who am I? I wasn’t born here. I have never known a “blood” relative. I’ve never looked upon the face of someone with the same genes as I have. Never seen my eyes in someone else. I paint people that surface from a yearning imagination. Some are illuminated by the refulgence of past encounters like a glowing filament in a freshly turned off light bulb. And some come from…who knows, or wherever. I guess I just miss my friends. Nostalgia is real sticky stuff. But this fantasy nurtures the narratives of our lives as cohesive intellectual and emotional beings. I indulge it.” Stuart Snoddy

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FANTASY TOYS BY ALLAN INNMAN

by Ariadna Zierold

allan innman, fantasy, painting, toys, surreal, figurines, colorful, vibrant, collage, upper playground

Allan Innman is a painter from Oxford, MS. He graduated from the University of Mississippi in 2006 with a BFA degree in Studio Art with an emphasis in Graphic Design. From 2007-2012 he worked as Visual Resources Specialist in the Department of Art at the University of Mississippi. Allan recently completed the MFA program at The University of Georgia Lamar Dodd School of Art in Drawing and Painting. His current work is based around make-believe and fantasy through the depiction of toys and figurines.

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TWISTS ON CONVENTIONAL FANTASY BY JON BOAM

by Ariadna Zierold

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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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OLD WORLD AESTHETICS BY OMAR RAYYAN

by Ariadna Zierold

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Martha’s Vineyard based artist Omar Rayyan‘s bucolic surroundings compliment and help inspire his “old world” aesthetic toward painting. Although looking to the past for inspiration and guidance from the great oil painters of the Northern Renaissance and the Romantic and Symbolist painters of the 19th century, he has picked watercolor as his medium of choice.

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Omar’s primary market is geared towards children’s and young adult’s magazine and books, doing cover and interior illustrations. He has also illustrated several children’s picture books.

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MAGICAL REALISM BY JULIE HEFFERNAN

by Ariadna Zierold

julie heffernan, portraiture, painting, fantasy, surreal, historical, landscapes, calamities, upper playground

Julie Heffernan‘s dark, Grimm fairy tale-like undercurrent transforms her aristocratic, operatic portraits into a contemporary vanitas or memento mori, acting as both a stylized fantasy and a Bosch-like warning. Her lush self-portraiture utilizes a myriad of art historical references to present a sensual interior narrative, a self-allegory whose half- hidden political agenda is the literal background of the paintings.

julie heffernan, portraiture, painting, fantasy, surreal, historical, landscapes, calamities, upper playground

Her imaginative landscapes feature such elements as exploding cities, castoff gods and garbage, and falling torrents of animals, meteors and gemstones. These elements reflect her view of the world after “calamities” such as Hurricane Katrina and the BP Oil Spill threaten to make it unlivable.

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DEMENTED ENCHANTMENT BY MATT DANGLER

by Ariadna Zierold

matt dangler, painting, surreal, monsters, characters, dream, fantasy, upper playground

New Jersey-based artist Matt Dangler’s imaginative explorations continue to evolve as the artist uncovers new facets of his consciousness and broadens the horizon of his spiritual journey with each new painting. Via the induction of a meditative state, which is at the core of his creative practice, Dangler looks inward, in pursuit of glimpses into the true essence of the self; not just in relation to his own being, but of a universal nature, much akin to that found within the Jungian archetypes and what can be derived from our private dream worlds.

matt dangler, painting, surreal, monsters, characters, dream, fantasy, upper playground

By opening himself up to the mysterious cues and metaphors his psyche provides him, Dangler constructs fantastically inspired and engaging imagery, which contains the power to reveal new and undiscovered aspects of the personalities of each and every one of us, by speaking directly to our subconscious and therefore our inherent inner beings.

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FABLE WORKS BY ALEX KUNO

by Ariadna Zierold

alex kuno, fantasy, folk, fairytale, children, painting, drawing, upper playground

Alex Kuno created a series of interwoven, darkly satirical fairy tale vignettes in his work The Miscreants of Tiny Town. This series presents the trials and tribulations of wayward children in various forms through mixed media paintings on hand-carved pieces of wood, drawings on paper, sculpture and installation. These pieces are playful investigations of longings, fears and dark stories from childhood that have shaped our adult anxieties and understanding of the real-world, large-scale cultural, economic and environmental change.

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JAPANESE FOLKLORE BY ELLIE OKAMOTO

by Ariadna Zierold

ellie okamoto, fantasy, surreal, colorful, animals, creatures, japanese, folklore, symbolism, upper playground

Ellie Okamoto’s paintings are a maelstrom of imagery teeming with rainbow-colored human figures, animals, and grotesque creatures. Her art is replete with Japanese folklore, tradition, and symbolism. Her paintings reveal clouds swirling through lush forests, carrying the spirit of animals and mythological creatures; the extinct Japanese wolf is a recurring character, once believed to be like a mountain god and the guardian of peasants since they were great hunters in mountain forests.

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