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ART

NICHOLAS ADELMAN 2010 - 2016


1 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

M

y friend, Hailey, once asked me what I feel when I create art. The act of making art conjures many feelings, but I found it difficult to pinpoint the strongest. I can feel angry, nervous, and ecstatic all at once. All of these sensations are temporary, but the awareness I feel about art in general is constant. For example, my eyes are always searching for something meaningful to capture and, possibly, translate into my vision on a canvas. It is as if my mind is always in art mode. I constantly think about artists I admire, new art supplies or techniques to try, and how to improve my work. I’ve learned through the study of the Old Masters that to be a great artist, one must practice art, live art, and be art. While I am no great, it makes sense to follow this philosophy

for the sake of self-improvement and fulfillment. I want to be the best artist I can be because art evokes a range of emotions that no other activity does. To continue making art is to proceed on my voyage to self-discovery; each painting, shoe design, or drawing reveals a figment of the subconscious that was previously unseen. In this sense, art nourishes my body and mind. The truth is: I did not have an answer to Hailey’s question. I had too many answers, as a matter of fact. I sat before her, dumbfounded. Hailey said, “You know that feeling you get when you’re holding a brush and you know just how much paint is on it and just how much pressure to apply when it touches the canvas?” After listening to her explanation, I figured out the simplest answer to this daunting question: intuition.


ART / 2

CONTENTS PAINTING 3 DRAWING 10 SHOE DESIGN 17

A WALK THROUGH ART HISTORY 28

PHOTOGRAPHY 43 CERAMICS & SCULPTURE 50


3 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Passion of the Pointe

Watercolor 36 x 36 inches 2012

PAINTING


PAINTING / 4

I

n this work, I painted my gorgeous friends as the personification of dreams. She sits in the clouds, gazing at the viewer hypnotically. She represents the pleasant and often impossible aspect of dreams as evidenced by her disproportionate size and the unnatural lighting.

The Allegory of Dreams

Oil on Canvas !8 x 29 inches 2013


5 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

Pasithea

P

asithea, the wife of Hypnos, has been referred to as the Greek goddess of hallucination. I chose to depict my friend, Hailey, as Pasithea in the form of a portrait bust. The life-like portrait bust symbolizes the mind’s detachment from reality when hallucinating. Hailey’s likeness is flanked by a still life containing wine as a reference to drunkenness, an apple symbolizing sin, and grapes as fertility. The contrast in lighting references Caravaggio’s famous style – Tenebrism.

Oil on Canvas 26 x 26 inches 2013


PAINTING / 6

Lady Daydream

A

woman sits above the clouds in a fantastical landscape that only exists in her dreams. Behind her is a mirror that reflects her reality: dull, bleak, and monotonous. This painting was inspired by the carefree personality of my sister. She too is an artist, so her mind is often in an other world.

Oil on Panel 36 x 36 inches 2013


7 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Lady Daydream III

Oil on Canvas 10 x 16 inches 2013


PAINTING / 8

(Above) You Are Perfection

Watercolor 9 x 12 inches 2011

(Left) Cobalt Abstraction-

Watercolor 8 x 10 inches 2014


9 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

Attawawapiskat

I

created this painting in response to an emergency declaration in the Attawapiskat First Nation in Ontario, Canada after 11 members of the nation (about 2,000 in total) attempted suicide in one night. This painting was created to bring attention to the systemic neglect and attempted genocide of the First Nations peoples of Canada through the Residential Boarding School system in Canada that operated until 1996.

Oil and Collage on Panel 26 x 26 inches 2016


ART / 10

Grandma’s House Oil on Canvas 16 x 20 inches 2016


DR

AW

IN

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/ NICHOLAS / NICHOLAS 1011 ADELMAN ADELMAN


DRAWING / 12

(Above) The Current State of Men’s Dress Shoes Graphite 11 x 14 inches 2014

(Left) Woman In Niqab Marker 8 x 8 Inches 2011

(Previous Page) Venus is Heartbroken

Graphite and Watercolor 6 x 8 inches 2014


13 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

The Frenchie of Samothrace

Colored Pencil 11 x 14 inches 2012


DRAWING / 14

I Don’t Like You At All Colored Pencil 11 x 14 inches 2013

(Left) There’s No Food Colored Pencil 9 x 12 inches 2012


15 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN


ART / 16

(Above) Symbolic Phallus: Dichotomy

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2014

(Left) Being a Cabin Counselor

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2014

(Below) Rise of the Nerds Digital Drawing inches 2014


17 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

SHOE DESIGN


SHOE DESIGN / 18

(Above) Mauve Suede Bootie

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2011

(Left) Gray Suede Bootie

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2011

(Left) Rose Bootie

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2011


19 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN The Ice Princess

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2011

The Ice Princess II

Marker and Ink 9 x 12 inches 2011


SHOE DESIGN / 20 Pastel Platform Sandal

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012

Blue Suede/Metal Sandal

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


21 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Suede Platform Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012

Rose Platform Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2014


SHOE DESIGN / 22 Taupe Wrap Sandal

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012

Taupe CloisonnĂŠ Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


23 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Turquoise CloisonnĂŠ Heel (The Lola) Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013

Art Deco/Southwestern Heel

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


SHOE DESIGN / 24 CloisonnĂŠ Boot

Marker, Ink, and Gold Leaf 11 x 17 inches 2013


25 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Red Lace Bootie

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013

Italian Palatial Heel

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


ART / 26

Martian Sandal 1

Watercolor and Pencil 11 x 14 inches 2016


27 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Martian Sandal 2

Watercolor and Pencil 11 x 14 inches 2016


SHOE DESIGN / 28

A WALK THROUGH ART HISTORY I

designed these shoes with a unique goal in mind: to create a shoe that emulates selected portions of famous art historical styles. Each shoe possesses design qualities, color palettes, and designs only found in the respective culture. This project allowed me to investigate art historical cultures in a special way by challenging myself to translate an entire style (or series of styles) onto a single object. Building off of the idea of my shoe designs as a vessel through which one can get a survey view of art history, I chose to organize the shoes and their respective art periods in chronological order so that the greatest degree of continuity may be achieved. The shoes take cues from the most prominent motifs present in the cultures represented. For example, the Egyptian wedge heel was designed with the treasures found in King Tut’s tomb in mind. The heavy use of lapis lazuli, turquoise, and carnelian can be seen in the famous funerary mask and the bead work in countless articles of jewelry buried with the king. Prominent visual traits of these movements are complemented by hints of the culture in certain shoes. The sandal design of the Roman heel suggests the reverence successful gladiators enjoyed. Other examples of cultural, rather than artistic, influence are prominent in the two far eastern designs of Japan in China, one celebrating the Geisha and the other symbolizing on the delicate beauty and pain of foot binding in the form of a “pointe heel.” All in all, this series of shoe designs accomplished my goal of creating different arena through which one can see the history of art. It is almost as though one can take a “walk” through history in these pieces.


29 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Greek Pottery Heel

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


SHOE DESIGN / 30 Roman Gladiator Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


31 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Egyptian Jewelry Heel

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


SHOE DESIGN / 32 Pre-Islamic Afghan Heel

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


33 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Celtic Heel

Colored Pencil and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


SHOE DESIGN / 34

EXPLANATION AND ANALYSIS: CELTIC HEEL DESIGN

P

erhaps my favorite design from the “Walk Through Art History” collection of shoes is the Celtic design. As many viewers have pointed out, Celtic is a very broad term. Due to the vagueness of such a term, I will specify which cultures and styles I referenced in the design of the shoe. One of the most striking aspects of this shoe, even to me, is the amount of detail put into it. I cannot tell you how many times I yelled profane things and felt anxious about outlining the details in pen. I drew this detail to achieve the effect of gold cloisonné – a technique in which partitions are made with narrow metal strips soldered edge-up and filled with enamel or gems. Such techniques were prominent in art of the Germanic peoples in the “Animal Style”. As defined in Gardner’s Art Through the Ages: Animal style is a generic term for the characteristic ornamentation of artifacts worn and carried by nomadic peoples who, for almost two millennia, moved restlessly to and fro across the vast, open grasslands that stretch from China into western Europe. I specifically referenced two famous pieces created in the animal style within the design of the heel and platform. In fact, these sections of the shoe are an almost direct translation of said artifacts in the shape of a vertical heel and a round platform. 

The first of these pieces is the impossibly intricate Purse Cover from the Sutton Hoo ship burial. This artifact contains animal motifs reminiscent of Mesopotamian and Egyptian art. Inter-

portion of the shoe (also containing knot patterns) to the simpler, knotted half. The part of the shoe that actually covers the foot would be made out of a reinforced green velvet in another interlace pattern. An obvious challenge in the process of designing a shoe that is supposed to represent a specific art historical time period is the process of discernment. In designing this shoe, I had to find elements of Celtic art that would readily be adapted to the form of a shoe and thoughtfully translate them to the tricky shape of a heel, platform, and a bent foot. In this way, it was necessary to take some artistic license to make an aesthetically pleasing design with some degree of historical accuracy.

A Frankish Fibula. 6th - 7th Cent. lace patterns, commonly found throughout Celtic art, can also be found in the piece.

It is crucial to recognize that the purpose of this design (and the rest of the collection, for this matter) was to create a high heel design that fused high fashion

Another artifact that influenced the design of the heel was a round Frankish fibula containing more geometric designs. As for the upper portion of the shoe, an almost entirely separate form of Celtic art is referenced. Celtic knots, a generic term for delicate interlacing patterns, were adapted as decoration for a variety of Christian monuments. A simple interlace element made of gold snakes around the side of the shoe, serving to link the Frankish

A typical Celtic Knot pattern. and relatively tricky art historical cultures. This shoe would likely break if it were made to my specifications because of the softness of gold, but this shoe is intended to be looked at–not worn. I sincerely hope that is explanation has been helpful and somewhat enlightening as to why I designed these shoes the way I did. -Nicholas Adelman

(Left) The Sutton Hoo Purse Cover


35 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Islamic Mosaic Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


SHOE DESIGN / 36 Byzantine Icon Boot

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2012


37 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Gothic Cathedral Heel (Revisited)

Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2014


SHOE DESIGN / 38 Baroque Ankle Boot

Colored Pencil and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


39 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Japanese Okobo Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


SHOE DESIGN / 40 Chinese Pointe Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


41 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Art Deco Heel Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013


SHOE DESIGN / 42 The Birth of Venus Marker, Ink, and Photo Manipulation 11 x 14 inches 2013

The Art of Shoe Design Marker and Ink 11 x 14 inches 2013

Shoe inspired by Johannes Vermeer’s “The Art of Painting.”


43 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Levitation

Digital Photography 2013

PHOTOGRAPHY


PHOTOGRAPHY / 44 Te Amo

Silver Gelatin Print 2012

After Man Ray

Silver Gelatin Print 2013


45 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN After Man Ray

Silver Gelatin Print 2013


PHOTOGRAPHY / 46 After Man Ray II Digital Photography 2013


47 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN Isolation

Digital Photography 2013

Women of Jazz Film Photography 2011


PHOTOGRAPHY / 48 Amsterdam Nights

Digital Photography 2013

Night Cafe

Digital Photography 2013


49 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

The Death of Saffron Digital Photography 2013


CERAMICS AND SCULPTURE / 50 Matryoshka Tea Bowls Wheel Thrown Stoneware 2012

CERAMICS & SCULPTURE


51 / NICHOLAS ADELMAN

Chinese Tea Bowls

Wheel Thrown Earthenware and Underglazes 2011

T

hese tea bowls were made as an artistic component of a book report I completed in the 9th grade on Lisa See’s book, Snow Flower and the Secret Fan. Each cup represents specific characters within the novel and shows their respective personalities and traits.


CERAMICS AND SCULPTURE / 52

Nude Torso Study

Stoneware 2011


Š Nicholas Adelman 2016 All rights reserved.

Art: Nicholas Adelman 2010-2016  
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