Jess Johnson (previously featured here) was born in Tauranga, New Zealand in 1979. In 2016 she relocated permanently to New York after twelve years of living and working in Melbourne, Australia. Her drawing and installation practice is influenced by the speculative intersections between language, science fiction, culture and technology. In her drawings she depicts complex worlds that combine densely layered patterns, objects and figures within architectural settings.
Johnson’s drawings are often displayed within constructed environments that act as physical portals into her speculative worlds. Her recent video collaborations withSimon Ward have involved translating her drawings into animated Virtual Reality, thus enabling her audience to have the simulated experience of entering the hypnotic realms depicted in her drawings.
Sarah Emerson is an artist based in Atlanta, Georgia. Her paintings and installations present viewers with highly stylized versions of nature that combine geometric patterns and mythic archetypes to examine contemporary landscape. She uses the camouflage of beautiful colors combined with a deliberate composition to explore themes that reflect on the fragility of life, the futility of earthly pleasures, and the disintegration of our natural landscape.
Peter Judson is a multi-talented illustrator and printmaker based in London inspired by such luminaries as the Memphis Group and Dieter Rams. After starting his career at the age of 14 with a Microsoft Paint drawing published in Pictoplasma, Peter spent some time as the leather-clad drummer of an unsuccessful band before ending up where he is now – creating satisfyingly transfixing work full of brow-furrowing graphical goodness.
Jun Cen (previously featured here) is an award-wining illustrator and animator born in Guangzhou, China, a subtropical city with warm and humid weather. He received his MFA in Illustration degree from Maryland Institute College of Art in 2013. He is the Overall New Talent winner of the 2013 Association of Illustrators Award. His work has been recognized by The Society of Illustrators, American Illustration, 3×3 Illustration Competition and more.
His conceptual illustrations portray stories in clever and inventive ways. Cen’s cunning use of patterns to represent ice, stone, and fur is very innovative. Rather than drawing these textures by hand, he employs marbled and blotchy patterns that mimic the lighting and colors of these natural surfaces.
Matthew Craven challenges the sweeping narratives of American history textbooks, appropriating images of historical figures and sites and defacing or reconfiguring them within new aesthetic compositions. With his surreal mash-ups of historical references composed on antiquated paper, Craven creates his own pared-down symbols and mythologies. In combinations of illustration, collage, and painting, a march of tribal chieftains, Masonic leaders, and American generals and presidents appears in his images, their faces blotted out or colonized by Craven’s trademark geometric patterns.
Many of Craven’s images are ambiguous, resisting cohesive narratives or easy interpretation; the artist has said that his compositions are not dictated by any political agenda but are based solely on aesthetic consideration.
Bradley Eastman aka Beastman is an multidisciplinary artist from Sydney, Australia. Influenced by the biodiversity, symbolism and design aesthetics behind nature’s repetitive geometric growth patterns and organic landscapes, Beastman’s paintings, digital illustration, commercial projects and public murals explore a unique visual language, depicting future environments of abstracted landscapes, potential new life forms and human intervention.
Scotland-based laser physicist-turned-artist and web developer Tom Beddard, aka subBlue, has produced a number of intriguing geometric forms he refers to as Fabergé Fractals. Like an ornate Fabergé egg, Beddard’s creations boast brilliant and intricate design patterns. The English artist uses a formulaic method to create his digitally rendered three-dimensional models.
The 3D fractals are generated by iterative formulas whereby the output of one iteration forms the input for the next. The formulas effectively fold, scale, rotate or flip space. They are truly fractal in the fact that more and more detail can be revealed the closer to the surface you travel.
London based Maurizio Anzeri makes his portraits by sewing directly into found vintage photographs. His embroidered patterns garnish the figures like elaborate costumes, but also suggest a psychological aura, as if revealing the person’s thoughts or feelings. The antique appearance of the photographs is often at odds with the sharp lines and silky shimmer of the threads. The combined media gives the effect of a dimension where history and future converge. Anzeri’s delicately stitched veil recasts the figure with an uncomfortable modesty, overlaying a past generation’s cross-cultural anxieties with an allusion to our own.
Morgan Blair grew up in rural Massachusetts, graduated from RISD in 2008, and lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Her recent work explores the balance of control and freedom in her process, manifested in a mashing up of low contrast flesh tones with wild, neon color schemes; hard edges with fuzzed out airbrush gradients; smooth, flat shapes with brush marks and rough, sandy textures; and wonky, irregular forms with geometric curves and angles.
The resulting optical abstractions play on the absurd in pop culture, current events, the mall, the internet, common street trash, consumerism, and personal experience.
Michiel Schuurman is a Dutch graphic and textile designer. Schuurman’s personal work specializes in typography and poster design which often boasts a rather maximalistic approach. His practice of combining bright colors, warped glyphs, harsh perspectives, and acidic patterns creates some awfully intriguing eye-candy, which he often screen prints himself.