PRIMAL PORTRAITS BY IAN BERTRAM

by Ariadna Zierold

ian bertram, illustration, comic, characters, mystical, grotesque, primal, portraits, drawing, upper playground

New York-based Ian Bertram is an artist interested in uncovering the hedonistic and fatalistic nature of man vs. self. A graduate of the School of Visual Arts in New York, Bertram was chosen as the Best New Talent of 2011 by Comicbookjesus.com, and selected to the Society of Illustrators 2012 Student Scholarship Competition.

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By combining precise, meditative mark making, with visceral and sudden actions, he creates mystical, grotesque, and primal portraits of ennui and the strange by way of drawing and painterly techniques.

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GROTESQUE CERAMIC FIGURES BY JASON BRIGGS

by Ariadna Zierold

jason briggs, sculpture, figure, ceramic, porcelain, human, body, parts, grotesque, bizarre, abstract, upper playground

American artist Jason Briggs creates bizarre ceramic sculptures. The pieces are white skin toned and covered in hair; part of his works appear to be human skin while other portions are distinctly man-made forms like upholstery. Made of porcelain, hair and steel, his handbuilt sculptures seem to resemble the human body in an abstract way with strong sexual references. Despite their grotesque forms, each piece has an endearing name such as ‘Angel’ and ‘Baby’.

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“It’s up to you to label them: sculpture, fine art, fine craft, ceramic sculpture, figurative, abstract, surrealism, eroticism, non-traditional, biological, fucked-up, pornographic or, worst of all, decorative.” Jason Briggs

jason briggs, sculpture, figure, ceramic, porcelain, human, body, parts, grotesque, bizarre, abstract, upper playground

Though his objects contain strong visual references, he is more interested in the implied tactile ones; the things that stir in him a compulsion to touch.  Beyond other external inspiration lies this basic, primal impulse. He recognizes – and acst upon – a profound desire to push, poke, squeeze, stroke, caress, and pinch. Briggs intends for his pieces to invoke a similar sort of temptation.

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POP-CULTURE PARODIES BY RACHEL HARRISON

by Ariadna Zierold

rachel harrison, pop culture, mixed media, grotesque, funny, sculpture, drawing, upper plyground

Rachel Harrison’s work draws from a wide range of influence, wittily combining art historical and pop cultural references through a diverse play of materials. Grotesque and funny, Harrison’s humour derives from its carefully structured, yet open-ended suggestion, each element building up to a plausible punch line. Using visual language as a subversive tool, Harrison parodies appropriating styles and motifs with subtle knowingness, wielding artistic process as a mode of investigation.

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Sculpting in the Dark | RUSSELL CAMERON

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron’s grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. “Russell’s main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer.”

The realism and surrealism of Cameron’s beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us.

Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project “Flesh and Bone” to a gallery near you.

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (1)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (2)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (3)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (4)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (5)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (6)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (7)

Darkness is said to be the absence of light, but what if darkness is the evidence of life? One look at Russell Cameron's grotesque sculptures may have you gagging, but then suddenly a realization can hit the viewer: this IS life; this is what I avoid bringing into awareness, and just because I avoid it, it doesn't mean it's not there. "Russell's main objective when creating a sculpture is to give it life, feeling and a place among us, whether it be a classic bust or a deformed limb mounted on a sheet of wood the piece should speak and tell a story to the viewer." The realism and surrealism of Cameron's beautifully crafted sculptures made of metal, clay, paint and wood, brings to life the stories that live among us and in us. Russel Cameron is a self-taught sculptor from Brooklyn, New York, hopefully bringing his ongoing project "Flesh and Bone" to a gallery near you. Via news.upperplayground.com (8)
 

 

GROTESQUE HUMANOIDS BY DONGWOOK LEE

by Ariadna Zierold

dongwook lee, sculpture, humanoid, grotesque, upper playground

The grotesque miniatures of Korean sculptor Dongwook Lee are not for everyone, and yet his work stems from what he describes as a basic concern for all human beings.

dongwook lee, sculpture, humanoid, grotesque, upper playground

Seoul, Korea based artist’s figures are small-scale sculptural works, most measuring no more than 12″ inches high made of Polymer clay, that typically depict contorted human forms. His use of figures has been associated to Lee’s personal hobby of collecting toys, plastic products that he incorporates as the main motif of his art.

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THE MONUMENTS OF JOHN ISAACS

by Ariadna Zierold

john isaacs, sculpture, human, body, grotesque, upper playground

John Isaacs’ work encompasses many different media, though much of it has origins in sculpture. The artist continually redefines his style, moving seamlessly through installation, sculpture, photography, film, painting and drawing.

john isaacs, sculpture, human, body, grotesque, upper playground

His work is a personal meditation on the physical memory of the body as its own landscape, as a place of inner emotional conflict, and not merely a depiction of obesity. The heroic, somewhat classical, pose is absurdly contrasted against its physical form. This fictional and anonymous figure is a monument, a mirror to our current historical moment in which we confront everyday the side effects of our over consumption, waste and pollution, but are virtually powerless to change our course.

john isaacs, sculpture, human, body, grotesque, upper playground

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THE CONTROVERSIAL SCULPTURES OF PATRICIA PICCININI

by Ariadna Zierold

patricia piccinini, sculpture, grotesque, hybrid, human, animal, australia, upper playground

Patricia Piccinini is one of Australia’s most acclaimed contemporary artists who works in a variety of media, including painting, video, sound, installation, digital prints, and sculpture.

patricia piccinini, sculpture, grotesque, hybrid, human, animal, australia, upper playground

Her startling sculptures examine the connections between science and nature, art and the environment. Audiences are drawn to Piccinini’s sculptures because they appear so real, yet they are creatures of the artist’s imagination developed to consider a strange new world of artificial or mutant beings derived from experimental biotechnology.

patricia piccinini, sculpture, grotesque, hybrid, human, animal, australia, upper playground

Created using a combination of materials such as silicone, fibreglass and human hair, Piccinini’s sculptures are familiar yet fantastical in their depiction of possible future species and their interaction with human beings. Often confronting yet endearingly vulnerable, her sculptures give form to her fascination with the relationship between the ‘natural’ and the ‘artificial’ while asserting the power of social relationships, love and communication. Piccinini’s work is fundamentally about the human condition, despite the quasi-human appearance of her sculptures. The artist sees them as ‘beautiful rather than grotesque, miraculous rather than freakish’.

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