Norway based artist Lars Elling was educated at the Bergen National Academy of the Arts. Elling’s works have been purchased by the Norwegian National Gallery, Trondheim Kunstmuseum, the EU Commission, and Arts Council Norway, and appear in many private collections in Norway and abroad.
Elling’s paintings are layered narratives told in a fragmented visual language. He incorporates references to film and photography into his works, letting them impact on the abstract grammar of the paintings. In this way the fleeting photographic image is interpreted through the inert state of the painted image. A subtle interplay of figurative and abstract elements arises in the alternately clearly focussed and indistinct areas of the picture. Nostalgia is often present too, intimated in references to private photo albums, opening for us an enigmatic corridor into a dreamscape of memories.
Mark Rogers is a self-taught artist currently living in Portland, Oregon. Stylistically his work has been described as a blending of folk art, medieval renascence, and fairy tale illustration. Taking inspiration from everyday occurrences and personal experiences, Rogers crafts narratives with imaginary characters to populate.
Kirk Fanelly’s collage and oil paintings are a great reminder that you can create gorgeous works of art, have a sense of humor, and make the viewer laugh and be disturbed all at once. Fanelly completed his BA from Brown University in 1999.
His work is part grounded in the solidity of the day to day and the objects and people that surround him. From those points, he flushes out narratives, humor, and dimensions that are either hidden or obscure. His desire is to be influenced by his studio space at McColl Center – introducing new interiors, people, light and ideas to his work.
Memphis-based Alex Paulus’ paintings reflect the denial of a shitty existence. Paulus has created a crowded installation of grotesque figurative paintings that are unapologetically in your face and ridiculously successful. He combines acrylic, oil and paint marker to create a variety of textures, which also add depth to his works.
A variety of misshapen and jumbled characters inhabit Alex’s canvases, and his figures are depicted trying out VR headsets, swimming with dolphins and windsurfing on a Papa John slice of pizza. Alex’s work is surreal, yet the topical and pop culture references he includes not only add humor but also keeps them grounded in a familiar sort of reality.
Salvatore Alessi was born in Sicily in 1974. After Art School, he graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Palermo, specializing in scenography. Then he started working as a scenographer: he made theatrical sets for the Politeama Theatre of Palermo, and the Massimo of Catania. In 2006 he devoted himself to painting professionally, permanently exposing at Il Polittico Gallery of Rome and Libra Contemporary Art of Catania.
Alessi plays with reality and abstraction in his oil works on canvas. His scenes seem to reference and subvert both the physics of the real world and an internal existence.
Molly Gruninger is a graphic designer and artist with a B.F.A. in Visual Communication from Ball State University. She has a passion for working with her hands. Whether she is painting, sculpting, or gluing sticks together, she will find a way to make something out of nothing.
Gruninger’s ideas are driven by the challenge to combine concept with function, and she enjoys being able to speak to a large population through the filter of her own experience. She believes beauty can be found everywhere, from a rusty nail to a pile of rocks, and both art and design allow her to take the mundane and make it meaningful.
San Francisco-based artist Jessica Hess is a hyperreal landscape painter. Her depictions of the urban environment both celebrate and validate the art of graffiti through a fine art lens of oil paintings on canvas and gouache on paper.
A graduate of RISD (Rhode Island School of Design), Hess is a recipient of the Trent Burleson Painting Prize, the Faber Birren National Color Award and the Stamford Art Association Award for Excellence. Hess has been exhibiting nationally since 2002.
Alex Gross (previously featured here) is a visual artist currently working in Los Angeles, California. He specializes in oil paintings on canvas whose themes include globalization, commerce, great beauty, dark mayhem, and the remorseless passage of time.
Gross is a master at cutting straight through the lines of code and the technology they’ve created, to reveal the concerning repercussions of our immersion in a world which fosters alienation, dislocation and distance. The apparent pessimism emanating from Gross’ paintbrush is undoubtedly justified and through his art he provides a meeting point where we can all unplug, reconnect with one another and greet tomorrow with fresh perspectives.
Thierry Bruet has painted and sculpted for over 35 years. His grand canvases shaped by a consciously classical slant and executed with traditional oil techniques, are witty, satirical and replete with carefully observed details. One side of him tends towards caricature and the grotesque, the other towards elegance and refinement.