FACELESS PORTRAITS BY ANNA BU KLIEWER

by Ariadna Zierold

anna bu kliewer, london, collage, environment, portrait, human, body, nature, surreal, upper playground

Ukranian artist Anna Bu Kliewer is a mixed media artist working in both analogue and digital collage. Having studied at both Vancouver’s Emily Carr University and London’s Central Saint Martins, the now London-based collage genius delivers faceless portraits by meshing aspects of the environment with the human body. Her collages play with space and identity, mashing it up, erasing and reconfiguring. The resulting imagery is a perfect blend of familiar and fantasy.

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‘DANDELION LIGHT’ BY DUY ANH NHAN DUC

by Ariadna Zierold

Paris, France based Duy Anh Nhan Duc was born in 1983 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. Nature is the matrix Duc’s artworks. A constant search for alliance and osmosis to present a different vision of plant kingdom. “Through my work, I intend to capture the unique allure of vegetation, to transcribe the emotions it arouses in me and to stage it in the narrative it brings to my mind.”

Duy Anh Nhan Duc, sculpture, dandelion, light, nature, botanical, paris, france, vietnam, upper playground

In his workshop, Duy Anh Nhan Duc smoothly transforms dandelion, clover, poppy, hydrangea, lichen… he gathers during walks. He turns them into artwork that stops the cycle of time and unveils the poetry of the moment’s delicateness. Sailing between the awareness and the beauty of the ephemeral, revealing the meditation and radicalness implied by nature, Duy Anh Nhan Duc ceaselessly plunges into the living beauty.

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THREATENED ECOSYSTEMS BY MICHAEL DANDLEY

by Ariadna Zierold

michael dandley, ecosystem, ecosystems, nature, industry, painting, paintings, seacoast, pollution, climate change, nature, upper playground

Seacoast, NH based Michael Dandley crafts vibrant, transformative works out of the ordinary. Dandley’s series highlights the odd and unsettling ways industry reconfigures land and threatens the delicate balance of the ecosystem. Whether about pollution, climate change, or loss of habitat and natural beauty, each of the immaculate paintings illustrates a way modern conveniences today will cost us tomorrow.

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A HEAVY FORESTED WORLD BY JESSE JACOBI

by Ariadna Zierold

jesse jacobi, painting, paintings, detroit, forest, nature, narrative, mysterious, ruins, environment, environments, upper playground

Detroit based Jesse Jacobi‘s work focuses on an unnamed culture of people living in a mysterious, heavily-forested world. While Jacobi makes it a point to not be explicit about any concrete narrative happenings, there is a clear framework of visual and thematic motifs involved: reverence for nature, the use of masks and various obscuring garb, cycles of life-death-dream, structures in differing stages of ruin, ritual and witchcraft, the space between visible and invisible environments, and the true nature of man.

jesse jacobi, painting, paintings, detroit, forest, nature, narrative, mysterious, ruins, environment, environments, upper playground

The smaller works are supplemental – images of idols perhaps used in every day life for various means of protection or intensification – and are intended to be seen as artifacts one might find within the larger world. The time and place depicted in his paintings is not made clear, but the setting is very far removed from modernity and anything involving current times.

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NATURE DARK ART BY DUSTY RAY

by Ariadna Zierold

dusty ray, painting, nature, animal, animals, dark, surreal, wildlife, colorado, upper playground

A painting contractor by day and a self-proclaimed artist by night, Dusty Ray’s (previously featured here) life is paint. Having earned his degree in English Literature from Colorado State University, he says his days as a writer bleed into the small narrative he creates with paint. Dusty’s subject matter mainly consists of the animal wildlife found in his beautiful home of Fort Collins, Colorado.

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ODDBALL CHARACTERS BY NICK SHEEHY

by Ariadna Zierold

nick sheehy, illustration, illustrations, illustrator, character, characters, surreal, london, australia, low brow, nature, texture, drawing, upper playground

Nick Sheehy (previously featured here) is an Australian-born artist and illustrator living in London. After studying bronze sculpture in the wilds of Tasmania, Nick gave up on art only to re-discover his love of drawing whilst living in London, sparked by an interest in the city’s low brow art, illustration, street art, and graffiti.

nick sheehy, illustration, illustrations, illustrator, character, characters, surreal, london, australia, low brow, nature, texture, drawing, upper playground

In his work, Nick explores the dreamlike, sometimes semi-autobiographical scenes and oddball characters that echo from his childhood imagination. Employing a laborious technique, building up layers of texture and thin color, his work infuses precision and attention to detail with random abstraction and clumsiness. He enjoys drawing various weird things for himself, exhibitions, publications, and occasionally the odd client.

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COLORFUL CHAOS BY ZHOU FAN

by Ariadna Zierold

zhou fan, painting, china, surreal, dreamlike, colorful, nature, people, jellyfish, chaos, chaotic, upper playground

Zhou Fan was born in 1983 in Shanxi Province in northern China. In 2006, Zhou graduated from the art department of Shanxi University. He participated in a solo exhibition and several group exhibition in his home province that year. Zhou has been very inspired by his childhood. While the artist has always had a strong fascination for Jellyfish, Zhou’s “Love of Jellyfish” series of paintings is based on dreams that he had as a young boy of many jellyfish floating in the sky, some of which fell to the ground on parachutes and became mushrooms. These dreams had a strong impact on the artist, and he remembers them vividly.

zhou fan, painting, china, surreal, dreamlike, colorful, nature, people, jellyfish, chaos, chaotic, upper playground

While Fan’s paintings may at first look happy and cheerful because they are colorful, many of the artist’s works have a sad undertone to them. Zhou seems to be quite sensitive to the fact that people can be cruel and destructive, and he can see the effect China’s societal changes are having on individuals and the society as a whole. Fan likes to combine the impossible, and while it looks beautiful within the paintings, the results can be confusing and chaotic-seeming.

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THE IMAGERY OF FRANK GONZALES

by Ariadna Zierold

frank gonzales, painting, paintings, nature, bird, birds, realism, surreal, colorful, composition, stillness, upper playground

Frank Gonzales‘ work is about taking reference from various sources including books, the net and photos to comprise and create his own imagery. By creating his paintings through reference or made up elements, there becomes a play between artificiality and realism. He likes to combine elements that may seem believable picture wise, but wouldn’t normally thrive in real life. Frank’s compositions are never thought out much beforehand. He likes the spontaneity of starting with a background color or single image as a jump off point for the rest of the painting. One image will spark another and the process takes shape from there. He finds this way of working to be both exciting and uncertain. Various marks and color glitches mimic this uncertainty resulting in visual stillness and movement.

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NATURAL SCIENCE ILLUSTRATION BY ZOE KELLER

by Ariadna Zierold

zoe keller, illustration, illustrations, monochrome, monochromatic, nature, animal, animals, fauna, detailed, surreal, portland, upper playground

Portland based Zoe Keller (previously featured here) is an illustrator exploring the intersection of art making, activism and the natural sciences. She spends most of her time drawing in her small home studio. She gathers inspiration from slow explorations of landscapes, hours spent thumbing through her growing field guide collection, and her memories of time spent in forests and on shores across the midwest and northeast.

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THE WORK OF BENE ROHLMANN

by Ariadna Zierold

bene rohlmann, illustrator, illustration, illustrations, munster, germany, berlin, collage, drawing, mexican, deth cults, traditional, native, nature, advertisements, retro, upper playground

Bene Rohlmann was born in 1985 in Münster, Germany and is currently living and working in Berlin. In 2007 he started his formal training in Design, with a major in Illustration at FH Münster and graduated with his diploma in 2012. His artwork combines various traditional techniques such as collage and drawing, and incorporate a random assortment of themes which interest him, such as Mexican death cults, traditional art from native tribes, lots of nature related themes like moths and plants, classic Disney movies and old advertisements.

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