Portland based artist AJ Fosik (previously featured here) creates intricate, vividly colored three-dimensional pieces that reference folk art, taxidermy, and cultural ritual. Fosik’s wall pieces and freestanding sculptures of anthropomorphized animals are carefully crafted from hundreds of pieces of wood that he cuts and paints individually by hand. Once the basic forms are complete, he adds threatening teeth, claws, and eyes to give the objects an intimidating presence. Totems and fetishes, as well as the “random, chaotic and arbitrary nature of existence,” fascinate Fosik.
Los Angeles based artist Delfin Finley has always been immersed in a creative environment. His mom and dad were both fashion designers and ran their business in their home. Delfin grew up watching his parents designing clothing, catering to their custom clients and attending Fashion Shows where they presented their lines.
His favorite genre is portraiture. In his works, constructed with precise brushstrokes of vivid colors, he manages to represent the essence of the person in his most honest and vulnerable state. Accuracy and care in forms are broken in the limits of the figures where the contours are blurred and merge with the background, in a metaphor of the fragility of the human being and its contingency.
Afarin Sajedi is an Iranian artist that creates soul baring close-ups that make you feel like your spirit has just been scolded. Afarin is not trying to be a feminist hero or a champion for the Third World. She is just trying to scope, capture and give a glimpse of the hidden and very often unseen turmoil buried within all of us.
The use of small brushstrokes make her paintings that much more lively – the texture encourages the idea of naturalism and un-edited beauty and the color is so vibrant and detailed, like you can see every pore, shadow, freckle, and blemish that exists. Her paintings are huge, so you can see every detail up close too, even better.
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.
Natalia Berglund believes that art should be intriguing and thought provoking. It should grab one’s imagination and give a brief entry into a new world. It should draw the viewer’s attention either through its beauty or the power and mystery of its presence.
The work Berglund creates falls into this realm. Her art is bold, yet easily accessible. It tells a story through a combination of familiar human forms and surreal environments. She draws her inspiration from the natural world and the expressive qualities of the human face and gesture. Her aim is to use these elements to create a visual fairytale that sparks the curiosity and imagination of viewers of all ages.
Southern California based designer and illustrator Dayoung Cho graduated at Art Center College of Design, Pasadena, CA 2014. She likes to create works filled with colors and imagination that will make people happy and put a smile on their faces. Cho’s works are inspired by her childhood memories and her grandmother’s stories.
Lisbon, Portugal based collagist and graphic designer Raf Cruz is influenced by various different things he sees and hears – politics, news, emotions/gestures, jazz, colors, book covers and graphic arts, the Russian avantgardists, the dadaists, the renaissance and sustainability just to name a few. Since childhood, Cruz has created images from scratch using collage as a paradoxical tool to escape from reality yet remain in the midst of things. Some pieces are totally disturbing, others are simple and fun. Colorful and colorless, they bring relieve even if they are not as sweet as we are expecting.
He uses old print materials like magazines, books and even school manuals to crafts the collages and builds them either by hand or in digital form. Anyway, the results are illustratively absurd and vivid ensembles expressing an emotional and dramatic world, where the dark, ironic and even comic elements are living side by side in beautiful harmony.
Mike Carr, a.k.a China Mike of Bristol, England, emerged in the 1990s as a “brush for hire” in the music and retail industries, and has since gone on to exhibit in galleries around the globe.
“Process is as important as the end result. I don’t really feel a pressure to create realistically defined images these days. I want there to be a playfulness in my work, to not get bogged down in mechanical routines.”
Old notebooks reveal more than his line work – a versatile mark-maker, his abilities as a draughtsman have returned to the fore in recent years; the photorealistic paintings which had become a trade mark, have given way to more abstracted figurative work.
Alex Jenkins is an illustrator and cartoonist based in the suburbs of South London. He graduated from Camberwell College of Arts in 2015 having studied an Illustration BA.
In his work, he explores satirical and critical subject matter through a distinctive and vivid style. Jenkins tries to avoid the pretense but wallow in humor, whilst touching on the absurd and surreal.
Portland-based AJ Fosik creates intricate, vividly colored three-dimensional pieces that reference folk art, taxidermy, and cultural ritual. Fosik’s wall pieces and freestanding sculptures of anthropomorphized animals are carefully crafted from hundreds of pieces of wood that he cuts and paints individually by hand. Once the basic forms are complete, he adds threatening teeth, claws, and eyes to give the objects an intimidating presence. Familiar cultural icons and traditions are re-configured, confronting the viewer with cryptic symbols from overlapping sources.