Jaume Plensa produces monumental sculptures in steel, glass, marble, polyester resin, concrete, and bronze. He is best known for his Crown Fountain in Chicago’s Millenium Park, two 50-foot-high glass towers set amidst a pool of water, which play giant video portraits of Chicago residents that periodically purse their lips and spout water into the pool.
Predominantly producing figurative sculpture, Plensa has created larger-than-life-sized heads constructed of fine, stainless-steel wire mesh so that their surrounding environments are visible through the works, and bronze figures cast from his own body.
Aaron Glasson (previously featured here) collaborated with Celeste Byers in Tulum, Mexico. The head is hollow and inside has room for many people. Their hope is the structure is used for get togethers, alone time, ceremonies, jungle picnics, music, meditation etc. Climbing plants will be planted around the perimeter and moss will turn the head green over time.
The concept was inspired by a Maya prediction that goes as follows… Tulum was one of the first points of contact for the Europeans who evidently invaded and colonized Mexico. Tulum, once part of the Mayan empire is no longer what it was. “The souls of the wise elders are vigilant and dwell under the ruins of Tulum and they’re waiting for the Kuxan Suum, the cord that connects the world to reunite. The Mayas are looming and at the first signs. their ancient powers will begin to return. ” -Marco Antonio León Diez
Los Angeles based Thomas Housago’s work playfully subverts the expectation of sculpture. Drawing reference to a multitude of styles such as Classicism, Cubism, and Futurism, Houseago’s intentionally clumsy forms trade the imperious and enduring qualities of traditional bronze or marble for the humble aesthetic of plaster and various found materials. Lacking the weighty physical stature associated with three dimensional media, Houseago’s ‘monumental’ structures appear almost comically flimsy, reducing the grandiose weight of art history into sympathetic effigies.
Houseago is fascinated by tribal art from Africa and the South Pacific, an influence evident in the primitivist mask-like heads and crude features of his disjointed figures. To create them, Houseago begins with a structure of iron rods, then adds materials such as plaster, hemp, and wood. Some of his works incorporate charcoal or graphite sketches of faces and anatomy on plaster and wood panels, producing an unfinished look that draws attention to the artist’s process.
Chris Agnew is a British artist known for his highly detailed drawings and icon panel etchings. He received his BA in Contemporary Art Practice from The University of Leeds in 2008, followed by a Masters in Fine Art at the Wimbledon College of Art in 2010.
Agnew’s work deals with the construction and deconstruction of belief systems, be they political, religious, social or cultural. He is interested by the malleable nature of what we hold as ‘truth’, and how the presentation of information informs our subsequent understanding of events.
Istanbul, Turkey based Ayca Telgeren fictionalizes the known undefined heroes of an imaginary atmosphere beyond perception of time, space and form. The artist, whose works contain an attempt to reach a sincere and direct expression, embraces an unpremeditated interaction with life and free flow of thought as her practice.
The artist who has taken up to colossal scale in due course her paper works which she has started as miniature tries in year 2007, uses paper as paint/pencil. The artist, who defines the phase of production as a meticulous and fiery exploration process, says that the flexible, intimate and fragile structure of the material corresponds really well to the state of mind of works of this period.
As a paper engineer, Matt Shlian‘s work is rooted in print media, book arts and commercial design. Beginning with an initial fold, a single action causes a transfer of energy to subsequent folds, which ultimately manifests in drawing and three dimensional forms. He uses his engineering skills to create kinetic sculptures which have led to collaborations with scientists at University of Michigan.
They work on the nanoscale, translating paper structures to micro folds. Their investigations extend to visualizing cellular division and solar cell development. Researchers see paper engineering as a metaphor for scientific principles; Shlian sees their inquiry as a basis for artistic inspiration.
Los Angeles based Katie Grinnan uses sculpture, photography, sound, and video to explore the relationship between our visual and kinesthetic experience and our resulting interpretation of space.
Grinnan’s most recent work reflects the search for structure and form within complex systems such as the brain and the universe that resist resolution and are largely speculative. It is the alchemical, yet paradoxical relationship between actual experience and our interpretations that has become the underlying focus of her work.
French artist Mathilde Roussel’s sculptures are conceived like living organisms. During her creation process, Roussel progressively gives up control over the materials she uses by letting them find their own form of existence. She selects mediums that are both fragile and resistant: paper pulp, graphite powder, incised rubber or plants. This choice allows her to explore unstable forms and observe their continuous mutation.
Mathilde is interested in the intimate link that connects the skeleton to our muscle structure — allowing us to challenge gravity. Standing requires the collaboration of an infinite number of body parts that constantly adjust our balance according to the movement we operate. Through incision, opening, recovering and suspension, the artist forces the forms she produces to find their place in space, thus expressing and revealing the movement they contain in themselves. The sculptures oscillate until they find their pivotal point.
With little more than thin wooden dowels and a bit of glue, German artist Janusz Grünspek creates scale replicas of everyday objects with little more than thin wooden dowels and a bit of glue, that from a distance appear like line drawings.
Dining room tables, power tools, an MacBook, and even a candle chandelier are formed from delicately cut and bent wooden pieces that mimic the form of digitally-rendered wireframes.The series is called Zeichnungen im Raum (Drawings in Space) and that’s actually describing them pretty well.