San Francisco based artist Isabel Samarasʼ work is a form of visual storytelling that is witty, mysterious, and tender. Her painted narratives are classical in technique and pop in content, revolving around issues of secret love, unrequited lust and making things end the way we wish they would.
Best known for lush and meticulously painted riffs on Old Masters that send up pop culture icons of the ’70s, her ribald images are woven with references to classic horror movies, ancient mythology, cheesy television, and childhood fables.
Kilian Eng works as an illustrator and concept artist based out of his hometown of Stockholm Sweden. He graduated in 2010 from Konstfack, University of Arts Craft & Design in Stockholm with a bachelor and master in Illustration and storytelling.
The visions created by him inhabit a landscape grown of blinking lights and structures of beautiful mechanics. Eng’s drawings show the artist as architect; as the omniscient voice controlling a self-created world. He works in science-fiction, but not the modern version of it – there are no horrors, no desolate worlds. He doesn’t envision an end time apocalypse, but a future where mankind has evolved to a place where technology and nature intertwine. There is optimism and hope even in the darkest and most alien of his pieces.
Quinne Larsen’s ink illustrations on paper have a hint of the graphic novel, innocent fairy tale scenes with a perturbing patina. She is interested in storytelling, and especially capturing stories in the middle of the narrative in single illustrations.
“I like the clarity. Cartoons and the kinds of ink-heavy styles used a lot in comics are meant to tell a story; they’re clear, they’re there to give you a certain amount of information in a stylish, but easy to read way. There’s a lack of pretense there, in that kind of style, that really appeals to me. It’s friendly. It wants you to ‘get’ what it’s saying.” Quinne Larsen
Kerry James Marshall uses painting, sculptural installations, collage, video, and photography to comment on the history of black identity both in the United States and in Western art. He is well known for paintings that focus on black subjects historically excluded from the artistic canon, and has explored issues of race and history through imagery ranging from abstraction to comics.
“It is possible to transcend what is perceived to be the limitations of a race-conscious kind of work. It is a limitation only if you accept someone else’s foreclosure from the outside. If you plumb the depths yourself, you can exercise a good deal of creative flexibility. You are limited only by your ability to imagine possibilities.” – Kerry James Marshall
This was Mike Skinner at his storytelling, scene-creating best, at the heart of his epic A Grand Don’t Come For Free, with “Blinded By the Lights.” His vocals seem to dissolve into the drug haze as the track goes on, makes the beat follow his double-pill ingestion, and it just floats off into the next track. A solid song.