Leipzig based graphic-designer and artist Robert Deutsch works on a twisted pop-surreal inspired world reflecting the incongruous human behavior and thinking in a chaotic upside-down society, dominated by the image of the anti-hero.
Bizarre comic-landscapes and ludicrous humor impel the works of Deutsch into the absurd, although their essence is not far from reality and its current social and political issues. He represents and builds his characters with a bold artistic approach referring to various actions and topical allusions.
Cahill Wessel is an artist working out of San Francisco and has a vision of the world that we cannot all develop –at least not in all 5 senses. His work is based on his own experiences of life and the world, resulting inmulticolored and psychedelic illustrations.
He works in a variety of styles and mediums, mainly with colored pencil, which is a very labor-intensive medium. Ideas for pencil drawings pop into his head at the most unexpected moments, so he writes notes in his phone while out and about. Then he draws up small sketches of the ideas that he thinks aren’t stupid, select the arrangements that inspire him the most, and translate the sketch into a larger piece. He lightly maps out the imagery in graphite, and then begins the process of building up layers upon layers of colored pencil.
Brooklyn based Hai-Hsin Huang paints and draws quickly, basing the compositions on images she finds on institutional websites: government, schools, hospitals, and news outlets. The photographs she uses are vaguely propagandist, and her resulting paintings both poke fun at and reveal the horror in such images.
Huang’s works explore images indicative of contemporary life. She is interested in the ridiculousness and fear in society, the absurdity and the loneliness. As part of a generation marked by hedonism, people seem to know more but feel less. Catastrophes become assumptions; we practice suffering and crisis with laughter. Huang tries to highlight the lives of this easy and comfortable generation, and in particular, their lightness of being.
Rome based Los Bravú are an artistic tandem formed by Dea Gómez and Diego Omil. Gómez is originally from Salamanca and Omil from Pontevedra and they met at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Salamanca and specialized in painting. In 2012, they became Los Bravú and in their work they merge comics with painting, but also they work in sculpture and illustration.
Andrea Joyce Heimer (previously featured here) is a self taught painter known for her exploration of the suburban experience, drawing inspiration from the neighborhood mythos of her childhood home in 1980’s Great Falls, Montana. Heimer struggled early-on with feelings of disconnect from her family and community. Her sense of isolation continued into her teens, but by then she’d found comfort in a peculiar activity: observation. Through quietly observing the lives around her Heimer was able to piece together neighborhood tales of madness.
Part allegory part autobiography, her tremendously detailed paintings depict scenes of heartbreak, madness, and the emotional claustrophobia that stems from living as an outsider in one’s own backyard.
San Antonio, Texas based Jason Limon is a painter who has exhibited his artwork in galleries across the U.S. and in parts of Europe. He studied Fine art and Communication Art in San Antonio and later began working as a graphic designer. His current art follows stories based on mythological creatures and paranormal cryptids portrayed with a hint of humor with a dose of strangeness. You can often see his characters brought to life in dimensional form through his complex sculptures.
Mark Mulroney considers sex and gore as primary means of defiance, and accordingly, guts, exaggerated genitalia, bloody wounds, and well-endowed pin-up girls take center stage in his surrealistic, comic-style paintings and sculptures. By way of explaining the series, Mulroney, who is not known for his discretion, says, “I just relied on my usual methods: put a boner on something or make it bleed.”
Clet Abraham is a French painter and sculptor who has been changing signs in Florence, New York City and Osaka in Japan. He places specially designed stickers on his street canvases so as to make them amusing and provocative, but not distract from their original purpose
“The omnipresence of street signs, other than being a sign of the culture of “anti-responsibility”, can verge on the absurd. The message is very poor (sometimes I feel like I’m being treated like an idiot by them) and yet they have a highly invasive aesthetic. As a professional in the world of visual space, I feel called to intervene, both to notify the public of the absurdity of the situation, and to propose a constructive and respectful alternative….The final objective? That traffic keeps flowing without us feeling spoken down to!” Clet Abraham
Los Angeles based Todd Schorr is an American artist and one of the most prominent members of the “Lowbrow” art movement or pop surrealism. Combining a cartoon influenced visual vocabulary with a highly polished technical ability, based on the exacting painting methods of the Old Masters, Schorr weaves intricate narratives that are often biting yet humorous in their commentary on the human condition.
Schorr grew up as a child in Oakland, New Jersey. Showing a compulsion for drawing at an early age, his parents enrolled him in Saturday morning art classes when he was five years old. Deeply affected by fantasy movies such as the 1933 film classic “King Kong” and the early animated cartoons of Walt Disney and Max Fleischer, their influence along with comic books such as “Mad” would have a lasting effect on Schorr’s developing visual vocabulary.
Oslo, Norway based Fredrik Raddum works with sculpture, installation, photo and performance related journeys. He has exhibited at various spaces since 2001. Raddum popularizes serious themes and embodies them in tragicomic animal and human figures resembling cartoon characters. Clichés and icons are twisted and turned in to new settings. Without obvious display of critical attitude, Raddum’s sculptures drop subtle hints encouraging the viewer to think beyond the initial encounter.