Spreading fear and mayhem in the visual arts.

Archive for the Hair & Fabric category

Eric White (yes, again!) at Galleria Antonio Colombo, Milan

by Suzanne on September 12th, 2011

The One by Eric White, oil on canvas, 36 x 36 cm, 2004 - click to enlarge

Yep, we've only just featured Eric but here he is again, this time with his first ever solo show in Italy! Automatic will open this Thursday, September 15 and present a comprehensive selection of his work - oil paintings, drawings and limited edition prints - focussing on post-war cinematics and the heyday of the American car industry.

Most of the exhibited works deal with the rather Ballardesque theme of the interiors of (vintage) cars and the events taking place in them - presented in a voyeuristic manner of weirdly angled shots through the car windows.

Because that's such a great topic that you should discover for yourself and in real-life, I decided to not post any pictures of what you can expect but instead illustrate the post with Eric's hair series because I'm mean like that.

Another One by Eric White, oil on canvas, 24 x 24 cm, 2004 - click to enlarge

And you know what's particularly amazing about this show? Someone actually managed the almost humanly impossible: To write a fantastic, unpretentious press release. So let's have some of it:

"Eric White can be considered one of the great pioneers of the oneiric Realism that draws on American film culture prior to World War II to create original psychedelic visions in the most refined painterly manner, deceptively referencing the customary vision of the imagery of the America Dream. His works often seem to lurk behind a very thin veil, an impalpable membrane that separates the real world from the realm of dreams, a land of infinite meetings, sensations, oddities."

Details below.

A Last One by Eric White, oil on canvas, 24 x 24 cm, 2004 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Thursday, Sep 15, 2011, 6 PM onwards

On show: Sep 15 - Nov 19, 2011

Address: Galleria Antonio Colombo, via Solferino 44, 20121 Milan, Italy, tel: +39 0229060171, email: info@colomboarte.com

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 3 - 7 PM

Press release

Artist's website

WurzelForum discussion

Winnie Truong's "The Fringes" at Erin Stump Projects, Toronto

by Suzanne on September 6th, 2011

© Winnie Truong

Winnie Truong - patron saint of classy mutant hypertrichotics - will soon be presenting new pencil crayon portraits to the Toronto public in a solo show aptly titled The Fringes.

The exhibition opens this Thursday, September 8, and as always, you can find all details below.


© Winnie Truong

Opening reception: Sep 8, 2011, 6 - 9 PM

On show: Sep 8 - Oct 2, 2011

Address: Erin Stump Projects, 1086 ½ Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1H8, Canada, tel: 416-834-0005, email: info@erinstumpprojects.com

Opening hours: Wed - Sat: 12 - 6 PM, Sun: 1 - 5 PM

Press release & preview

Artist's website

WurzelForum discussion

"Valley of the Dolls" Group Show at Strychnin, Berlin

by Suzanne on September 5th, 2011

Princess Owl by Eric van Straaten - click to enlarge

With Valley of the Dolls, Berlin's Strychnin Gallery will once again pay tribute to some of the world's leading young doll artists.

Curating a doll group show is a challenge in many ways but particularly because the genre has a difficult position in the arts and it's often a very tricky navigation between admirable, if not slightly OCD crafts(wo)manship and downright sugar-coated fantasy kitsch.

Strychnin, however, has avoided falling into the marzipan trap by getting 3D-printing "sculptor" Eric van Straaten on board an otherwise female cast of doll artists and therefore giving a very decorative and fashiony Valley of the Dolls a much needed obscure twist.

Virginie Ropars will certainly once again deliver outstandingly detailed symbiotic and allegorical work, twin sisters Elena and Ekaterina Popovy will be presenting their samurai Barbie®... err... beauties while Marmite Sue has been taking self-harming one step further for this group show and will be showing porcelain lolitas with limbs carved down to translucent filigree.

Basically, there's something for every doll lover in this show. Opens this Friday, September 9. Details below.

Model No. 3 by Ekaterina and Elena Popovy - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Sep 9, 2011, 7 PM onwards

On show: Sep 9 - Oct 2, 2011

Address: Strychnin Gallery, Boxhagenerstr. 36, 10245 Berlin, Germany, tel: +49 30 9700 2035

Opening hours: Thu - Sun: 12 - 6 PM

WurzelForum discussion

Richard Stipl's "Remembering Disasters" at Galerie Dukan Hourdequin, Paris

by Suzanne on September 5th, 2011

Heretic II by Richard Stipl, clay, hair, 66 x 19 x 14 cm, 2011 - click to enlarge

Dukan Hourdequin Gallery in Paris - check out their fantastic roster of artists - presents the first French solo exhibition of Czech artist Richard Stipl's works.

Remembering Disasters opens this coming Thursday and will be showing sculptures from the past decade of Richard's grotesquely physiognomic creative output.

For some reason, I keep reading the show title as "Dismembering Disasters" but I guess that just goes to show that I have a one-track mind.

Curator of the exhibition is Otto M. Urban who brought us the fantastic Decadence Now - Visions of Excess at Prague's Rudolfinum Gallery last year.

You know that Franz Xaver Messerschmidt would have loved to attend this show so please do him a favour and don't miss it if you're in Paris. Details below.

Heretic I by Richard Stipl, clay, found objects, 25 x 17 x 12 cm, 2011 - click to enlarge

Opening reception: Sep 8, 2011, 6 - 9 PM

On show: Sep 9 - Oct 15, 2011

Address: Galerie Dukan Hourdequin, 24, rue Pastourelle, 75003, Paris, France, email: info@dukanhourdequin.com | Map

Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 11 AM - 7 PM

Press release

WurzelForum discussion

House of Beasts at Attingham Park, Atcham, Shrewsbury, UK

by Suzanne on August 1st, 2011

1 - Evacuate by Kate MccGwire, bird feathers coming out of pot - click to enlarge

When news reached me a month ago that Meadow Arts were curating a year-long site-specific group show of taxidermy, sculpture and installation art entitled House of Beasts at the breathtaking Attingham Park in Shrewsbury (Charles Darwin's birthplace - how perfect!), I knew that there was still hope that the Elder Gods can indeed hear our prayers and pleas for great art exhibitions in the UK and do receive our sacrifices.

2 - Foreground: Untitled (Sphere) by Alastair Mackie, mouse skulls, wood, glass, courtesy the artist and All Visual Arts / Background: Herd by Susie MacMurray, cut antlers, silk velvet, Meadow Arts Commission 2011 - click to enlarge

House of Beasts is way more than land-art meets Wunderkammer though - Meadow Arts have managed to create a surreal fictional space where taxidermy becomes alive and sculpture becomes organic.

3 - Refuge by Nina Saunders, taxidermy fox, upholstered armchair, courtesy David Roberts Collection - click to enlarge - click here for detail

Where Nina Saunders' little fox (picture 3) just stretched its paws and yawned, where Tessa Farmer's insect warriors battle fearlessly with their porcupine spine spears, where Daphne Wright's swan (picture 7) is drying its feathers after an invigorating swim in the River Tern, where Polly Morgan's magpie (picture 5) just picked up the phone, where Kate MccGwire's leech-like feather blob (picture 1) is spooking and creeping around the house like it's trapped in some Edward Gorey book or Ray Caesar artwork.

4 - Chandelier (Katy’s Convoy) by Nina Saunders, chandelier with taxidermy birds, courtesy the artist - click to enlarge

I've had a long love and passion for artists combining bone and filigree with taxidermy, so I immediately knew this would work perfectly at an old manor house like Attingham Park but when I saw the line-up of artists, I did need to reach for the smelling salts, it is that amazing.

5 - One for Sorrow by Polly Morgan, bakelite telephone and taxidermy magpie, courtesy the artist - click to enlarge

Featured artists include:

*INHALES* Ruth Claxton, Mat Collishaw, Tessa Farmer, Rachel Goodyear, Kathleen Herbert, Alastair Mackie, Susie MacMurray, Kate MccGwire, Polly Morgan, Nina Saunders, Anj Smith, Daphne Wright *EXHALES*.

6 - The Beast in Me by Mat Collishaw, digital photograph, courtesy Anne Faggionato - click to enlarge

Yeah, I know, right? A plethora of reasons to drag yourself to Shropshire before mid-July 2012. Details below.

Many thanks to Anne de Charmant, director of Meadow Arts for the in-situ image material.

7 - Swan by Daphne Wright, cast marble dust, Meadow Arts Commission 2007 - click to enlarge

On show: Jul 2, 2011 - Jul 15, 2012

Address: House of Beasts at Attingham Park, Atcham, Shrewsbury, Shropshire, SY4 4TP, tel: 01743 708123 (INFOLINE), email: attingham@nationaltrust.org.uk | Exhibition map

Press release | Exhibition map

WurzelForum discussion

The Symbiotic and Alienated Works of Rachel Goodyear

by Suzanne on August 1st, 2011

Walking on Tiptoes (detail) by Rachel Goodyear, pencil and watercolour on paper, 30cm x 42cm, private collection, 2009 - click to enlarge

While researching image material for a blog post about one of the most spectacularly curated group shows in aeons - I will post about it later today - I re-discovered Rachel Goodyear's website and decided that she's really deserved her own post here because her images have been floating around on both the blog and forum for a while now.

Imaginary Friend (detail) by Rachel Goodyear, pencil and watercolour on paper, 30cm x 42cm, private collection, 2008 - click to enlarge

Born in 1978 in Oldham, Lancashire, Rachel studied fine arts in Leeds and now lives and works in Manchester. Although deliberately limiting herself to work in small scale with a strong focus on watercolour and pencil, she's an extremely accomplished artist who really can't seem to stop herself, judging by all the found material she draws on - from paper bags to envelopes.

Fawn with Hand by Rachel Goodyear, pencil, watercolour and gouache on paper, 22cm x 22cm, collection of Bury Art Gallery and Museum, 2008 - click to enlarge

Strong recurring themes in Rachel's work are symbiosis, entomology, mycology, decomposition, masking & obscuring, injury & trauma (in a Pascal Bernier sense), alienation & hermeticism, attachment & conjoinedness... so basically, the sheer existence.

The Man in the Suit Is Unwell by Rachel Goodyear, pencil on paper, private collection, 2007 - click to enlarge

Dave Beech once said about her oeuvre:

"Nothing is at home in these works, as if the world had been tapped lightly and everything had stumbled into unfamiliar positions.”

Chin Strap from the Nature Notes series by Rachel Goodyear, pencil and watercolour on paper, 14cm x 21cm, Olbricht Collection, 2009 - click to enlarge

And 'tis very true indeed and I couldn't have found better words - particularly not in this ungodly heat.

So please have a look at her website and discover her vast portfolio with your own eyes.

From the Nature Notes series by Rachel Goodyear, pencil and watercolour on paper, 14cm x 21cm, Olbricht Collection, 2009 - click to enlarge

Ruth Marten at Hosfelt Gallery, NYC

by Suzanne on July 22nd, 2011

Hirsute by Ruth Marten, ink on found print, 9"x 5 7/8", 2007 - click to enlarge

There are artists who rework old illustrations because a) they simply cannot be bothered to start from scratch or b) they have horror vacui when sitting in front of an empty glaring sheet and then, well then there is Ruth Marten.

Ruth Marten's works are way more than mere ready-mades or upcycled memorabilia - as an actual expert in putting a most haunting aura in found material she literally intervenes in the historic.

What makes her stand out is beyond doubt her technical excellence and her astonishing versatility - her Hair series will illustrate to you what I'm talking about. Is this skill set that puts her work right up there with the Chapman Brothers' 2003 reworks of Goya's Los Desastres de la Guerra etchings in regards to twisted sense of humour, with Edward Gorey in regards to her whimsical melancholia and Heinrich Hoffmann in regards to educational shock.

Ruth is currently presenting slightly newer works than I'm showing here at the Hosfelt Gallery in a summer group show alongside Rachell Sumpter, Christopher Adams and Jeremy Stenger.

Please note that the exhibition has now been extended to August 5.

Zoophilia by Ruth Marten, ink on found print, 10 1/2" x 8", 2007 - click to enlarge

On show: Jun 23 - Aug 5, 2011

Address: Hosfelt Gallery, 531 W 36th Street, New York, NY 10018, USA, tel: 212-563-5454, email: infony@hosfeltgallery.com | Map

Opening hours: Tue - Fri: 10 AM - 6 PM

Press release

Artist's website

WurzelForum discussion

6 Things To Keep You Company In Desperate Times

by Suzanne on July 13th, 2011

As I'm trying my best to deal with an ever mounting misanthropy and overall sickness provoked by an insane amount of existential bullshit thrown at me while being repeatedly kicked in the guts and brains by this thing called "life", I decided to distract myself for a while and check out what some of my favourite artists have been up to. Here are a few random recent works by people I admire highly... and who help me keep going:

- I -

Laurie Lipton: Lace & cobwebs

Lachrymose Lace by Laurie Lipton, charcoal and pencil on paper, 57 x 40.2 cm, 2011 - click to enlarge

Laurie's most recent piece, Lachrymose Lace, has been opening a portal in my head. The gap in the row of pearls, the little threads sticking out of the lace, the irregularity at the bottom of the veil echoing the cobwebs, the waxy tear are all obvious signs of her artistic genius bordering on visionary madness.

- II -

Joao Ruas: Metal & alchemy

Etching Progress by Joao Ruas, 2011 - click to enlarge

Joao recently shared this progress picture of an etching he's working on with his readers and it perfectly illustrates his love affair with the meandering line, his sincere craftsmanship and his uncanny range of talents.

- III -

Xhxix: Casts & buttons

By Xhxix, 2011 - click to enlarge

Xhxix/非/hi likes to create a bit of mystery around himself and seems to really only have a Tumblr - which I almost certainly discovered via Nana.

Above is his newest digital piece and I think he is one of the very few artists who - with his dark yet playful eroticism - has actually turned me slightly more mellow towards the hipster male.

- IV -

Richard Stipl: Thorns & daggers

By Richard Stipl, 2011 - click to enlarge

Via Fuzzy Ladies (and therefore quintessentially via DR Tenge) come these new works by the glorious Richard Stipl.

... and finally, two disturbing visual feasts via Substrom and Sang Bleu

- V -

"Ehm... I guess it's some kind of graphic."

- VI -

Yes, I know Possession is overused and tumblrified to the extreme, but there's something hypnotic about this piece here:

Maurizio Anzeri at BALTIC, Gateshead

by Suzanne on June 21st, 2011

Nadia by Maurizio Anzeri, 2010, image courtesy of BALTIC - click to enlarge

From June 25 onwards, the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Arts in Gateshead will be presenting recent works by London-based Italian artist Maurizio Anzeri whose intricate embroidery and needlework has been gaining great popularity and high-profile collectors since his 2009 solo show at London’s Riflemaker.

Despite male artists like Seb Patane, John Stezaker or Angelo Filomeno creating similar darkly surreal, psychologically dense, and sweetly morbid collage works with ballpoint pens respectively photography and silk, Anzeri is still a pioneer in a genre strongly dominated by women like Julie Cockburn, Hinke Schreuders, Flore Gardner and Erin Endicott, to name a few.

Anzeri's clear focus on a geometric narrative, his obsessive attention to detail and his love affair with outsider art and ready-mades have made it possible for him to achieve authenticity, to create an aura by reworking the epitome of Walter Benjamin’s “technical reproduction” - the photograph.

Family Day by Maurizio Anzeri, 2009, image courtesy of BALTIC - click to enlarge

Using found photographs of unknown origins as his canvas, Anzeri stitches new anatomical and physiognomical realities onto the faces of our collective subconscious past. The outcome is often unnerving and psychedelic, sometimes fetishistic and occult, and always very tactile and playful.

Anzeri says that:

“There are no rules other than I always leave one or both eyes open. Nothing is bigger in my head than a face, it’s the best landscape we can look at.”

On Wednesday evening, June 29, the BALTIC invites the public to a free conversation where Anzeri will be discussing his work with Alessandro Vincentelli, BALTIC’s curator of Exhibitions and Research.

Details below.

Angelo by Maurizio Anzeri, 2010, image courtesy of BALTIC - click to enlarge

On show: Jun 25 - Oct 2, 2011

Address: BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead, NE8 3BA, UK, tel: +44 (0)191 478 1810

Gallery hours: Daily 10 AM - 6 PM, except Tue: 10.30 AM - 6 PM

Press release

Atsushi Suwa at Gallery Naruyama, Tokyo

by Suzanne on June 9th, 2011

Stereotype 08 by Atsushi Suwa, oil on canvas, 2008 - click to enlarge

Atsushi Suwa 's solo show To Live or to Die, We Share the Same Fate will be opening tonight at Tokyo's Gallery Naruyama.

A technically absolutely brilliant artist who makes it seem totally effortless to cram a trompe-l'oeil with the entire mirror perspective of Jan van Eyck's Arnolfini Portrait into a small camera lens (below), he has shown time and again that he cannot simply be reduced to realism - despite his obvious and vast talent for it.

By Atsushi Suwa - click to enlarge

His intimate collaboration with the famous and awe-inspiring butoh dancer Kazuo Ohno or his documentary Father series show a very deep emotional involvement with the subject, a desire to dissect traumata and fears, to look mercilessly at the fabric and tissue of life. And death.

I'm not entirely sure what will be presented at the exhibition, but I'm pretty certain it's near impossible for Atsushi Suwa to disappoint. Details below.

By Atsushi Suwa

On show: Jun 9 - Jul 9, 2011

Address: Gallery Naruyama, #205 Matsuoka Kudan Bldg. 2-2-8 Kudan Minami, Chiyoda-Ku, Tokyo 102-0074 Japan, tel: +81 (0)3 3264-4871, email: info@gallery-naruyama.com | Map

Gallery hours: Daily: 1 - 7 PM, except Wed & Sun

Press release

Artist's website