GEOMETRIC ORGANISMS BY JAIME ROVENSTINE

by Ariadna Zierold

jaime rovenstine, painting, geometric, dots, colorful, abstract, landscapes, landscape, organic, upper playground

Kansas City, Missouri based Jaime Rovenstine’s geometric shapes are married with landscapes that look like they’re from another planet shrouded in dots. Her paintings are most inspired by natural organisms and biospheres. She has come to see her paintings as small windows into some sort of dream-world. Some paintings feel like they’re underwater, some out in space, some in the mountains.

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EMBROIDERED LANDSCAPES BY ANA TERESA BARBOZA

by Ariadna Zierold

ana teresa barboza, embroidery, landscapes, landscape, nature, peru, lima, upper playground

Lima, Peru based artist Ana Teresa Barboza creates landscapes and other imagery that exists in the space between tapestry and sculpture using embroidery, yarn, and wool. Emulating the flow of waves or grass, each piece breaks out of its embroidery hoop and tumbles down the wall upon which it is being displayed.

ana teresa barboza, embroidery, landscapes, landscape, nature, peru, lima, upper playground

Both embroidery and crocheting are techniques that require time. I use these techniques in order to make a connection between manual work and the processes of nature; creating thread structures similar to the structures that make a plant for example.” Ana Teresa Barboza

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SCIENCE FICTION BY VIRGIL FINLAY

by Ariadna Zierold

virgil finlay, science fiction, scifi, sci fi, illustration, drawing, illustrations, drawings, monochromatic, stippling, scratchboard, monsters, aliens, women, robots, space, spaceships, bizarre, fantastic, landscapes, pulp fantasy, upper playground

Virgil Finlay was an American pulp fantasy, science fiction and horror illustrator. He has been called “part of the pulp magazine history … one of the foremost contributors of original and imaginative art work for the most memorable science fiction and fantasy publications of our time.” 

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While he worked in a range of media, from gouacheto oils, Finlay specialized in, and became famous for, detailed pen-and-ink drawings accomplished with abundant stippling, cross-hatching, and scratchboard techniques. He produced wild and fantastic images of monsters, aliens, demons, robots, spacemen, spaceships, bizarre experiments, psychological horror, fantastic landscapes, and women.

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STRANGE VISIONS OF NATURE BY CLAIRE SHERMAN

by Ariadna Zierold

CLAIRE SHERMAN, PAINTING, NATURE, LANDSCAPES, NATURE, SATURATED, COLORFUL, TEXTURE, ABSTRACTION, ABSTRACT, UPPER PLAYGROUND

New York City based artist Claire Sherman produces large-scale paintings and jewel-like drawings of natural landscapes and their details that appear both representative and off-kilter. Though she has recently started visiting the places she paints, most of her work is based on images she finds in kitschy nature books. Sherman convincingly captures the saturated colors and fine textures of nature. Her works are anything but straightforward. She paints loosely and frames her views awkwardly, building ambivalence and abstraction into her alluringly strange visions of nature.

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BROKEN LIQUID BY BEN YOUNG

by Ariadna Zierold

ben young, new zealand, glass, concrete, sculpture, ocean, landscape, landscapes, nature, upper playground

Mount Maunganui, New Zealand based Ben Young is a self-taught artist who has been making glass sculpture for over 15 years. Each of Young’s sculptural works are hand drawn, hand cut and handcrafted from clear sheet float glass, then laminated layer upon layer to create the final form. He constructs models, draws templates, makes custom jigs and then cuts the layers with a glazier’s hand-tool.

ben young, new zealand, glass, concrete, sculpture, ocean, landscape, landscapes, nature, upper playground

Young’s current work explores the use of industrial materials to compliment the organic glass shapes. He liked the idea that concrete is a basic construction material, and also the physical and visual contrasts between the textures and colors of both materials. Still noticeably influenced by the ocean and bodies of water – the concrete forms have become an integral part of his art forms as have the small bronze carvings which he sculpts initially from wax and uses to help portray the narrative suggested by his landscapes.

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SPECTRAL FIGURES BY GENIEVE FIGGIS

by Ariadna Zierold

genieve figgis, painting, oil, humor, canonical, hierarchies, scenes, landscapes, bourgeois, traditional, portrait, upperplayground

The paintings of Irish artist Genieve Figgis are possessed of a wicked, unmistakably Irish sense of humor. They ironize our attitudes to conspicuous wealth, land ownership, and social hierarchies by reimagining canonical paintings—commissioned to preserve the glory of their subjects—as nightmarish scenes, suggestive almost of depravity.

genieve figgis, painting, oil, humor, canonical, hierarchies, scenes, landscapes, bourgeois, traditional, portrait, upperplayground

Her scenes depicting bourgeois homes, traditional portraits, or landscapes are often haunted by spectral figures and leering creatures with canes and top hats. A sense of the charmingly macabre emerges from Figgis’ combination of an apparent pictorial banality with dreamlike qualities.

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PICTORIAL MEMOIRS BY PAUL METRINKO

by Ariadna Zierold

paul metrinko, sea, water, pool, landscape, landscapes, painting, figurative, seaside, upper playground

New York City based Paul Metrinko’s paintings visually explore the people, places and things that surround him. His paintings are equally a living pictorial memoir and an earnest contribution to the storied tradition of figurative painting.

paul metrinko, sea, water, pool, landscape, landscapes, painting, figurative, seaside, upper playground

Using his characteristic and vaguely abstract style, Paul morphs the noisy, harsh atmosphere of a sunny seaside resort into a sweet pastel stretch of atmospheric daubs of paint in a way that makes it completely enchanting, transforming this familiar space into a fairytale-like landscape that’s not completely without sinister undertones.

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AN EXCERCISE IN ATTRACTION BY ANDREW MCINTOSH

by Ariadna Zierold

andrew mcintosh, mackie, painting, landscapes, desolate, kiosks, surreal, magical, upper playground

Andrew McIntosh was born in Grantown On Spey in the Highlands of Scotland in 1979. Following studies at Edinburgh’s Telford College, he held his first solo exhibition at the Highland Mori museum in 2001. Since then he has exhibited widely across the UK, including at the Carnegie Club at Skibo castle in Sutherland, and the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition in London.

andrew mcintosh, mackie, painting, landscapes, desolate, kiosks, surreal, magical, upper playground

“My paintings are an exercise in attraction. Through them I am constantly searching for new ways of communicating with the viewer. By seducing them with my imagery, I try to create a new visual language with the power to pique their attention and make them stop to ask: why? Desolate landscapes, decrepit houses, and incongruous moments of glory come together to suggest the presence of a narrative that exists as much in the viewer’s mind as in the painting. This is how I aim to use my works: as the space for an imaginary dialogue between strangers.” Andrew McIntosh

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THE QUEEN OF BOHEMIAN ARTISTS: GERTRUDE ABERCROMBIE

by Ariadna Zierold

gertrude abercrombie, surreal, surrealist, painting, bohemian, landscapes, self portrait, sorcery, upper playground

Gertrude Abercrombie was an American painter based in Chicago. Called “the queen of the bohemian artists”, Abercrombie was involved in the Chicago jazz scene and was friends with musicians such as Dizzy Gillespie, Charlie Parker, and Sarah Vaughan, whose music inspired her own creative work.

gertrude abercrombie, surreal, surrealist, painting, bohemian, landscapes, self portrait, sorcery, upper playground

She painted many variations of her favored subjects: sparsely furnished interiors, barren landscapes, self-portraits, and still-lifes. Many compositions feature a lone woman in a flowing gown, often depicted with attributes of sorcery: an owl, a black cat, a crystal ball, or a broomstick. 

gertrude abercrombie, surreal, surrealist, painting, bohemian, landscapes, self portrait, sorcery, upper playground

Abercrombie’s mature works are painted in a precise, controlled style. She took little interest in other artists’ work, although she admired Magritte. Largely self-taught, she did not regard her lack of extensive formal training as a hindrance.

gertrude abercrombie, surreal, surrealist, painting, bohemian, landscapes, self portrait, sorcery, upper playground

Her work evolved into incorporating her love for jazz music, inspired by parties and jam sessions she hosted in her Hyde Park home. Musicians such as Sonny Rollins, Max Roach, Jackie Cain and the Modern Jazz Quartet were considered friends. Dizzy Gillespie described her “the first bop artist. Bop in the sense that she has taken the essence of our music and transported it to another art form”.

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ABSURD ART BY DAVID IRVINE

by Ariadna Zierold

david irvine, toronto, prints, vintage, painting, pop culture, redirected, humor, landscapes, upper playground

Toronto-based artist David Irvine has always had a fondness for old prints found at thrift shops. He used buy them to paint over and reuse as blank canvases, then one day started painting on the pictures themselves. Seven years on, he has upcycled hundreds of paintings, adding incongruous pop culture figures such as Darth Vader and Pac-Man to conventional scenes.

david irvine, toronto, prints, vintage, painting, pop culture, redirected, humor, landscapes, upper playground

Irvine has been refining and pushing the boundaries of “redirected” art with a unique and original spin almost as long as his good friend, Marcel Duchamp. David’s quirky and very popular style is created by repurposing unwanted prints or original art from thrift stores or found at yard sales and painted upon using his own style of creativity. Seemingly random subject matter including pop cultural references, political comment, the camp and the absurd, often combining all these elements to create truly original art pieces.

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