Direct Art VOLUME 17
Dan Lydersen Notions of Spirituality
A Bitchin’ Space Gallery Sacramento, California www.abitchinspace.com PATRICIA GILLESPIE
African in America Oil Pastel 68” x 51
IVAN KUSTURA WWW.IVANKUSTURA.COM
Niroskk Oil on canvas 30” x 25”
Claire Rosen www.clairerosenphoto.com The Last Supper, West Moore Farm, Devin, UK From a collaborative project with bespoke chandelier designer, Alex Randall, consisting of narrative images showcasing her lighting designs.
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Dir ect Ar Direct Artt Editor: Janet Robinson Managing Editor: Terell Stanley / Art and Design: Trevor Pryce All unsolicited manuscripts, photographs, slides and other materials must be accompanied by postage and self-addressed envelope. All artwork and images in this publication are under the exclusive copyright of the artists. Reprinting or reproducing these images by any means in any form is prohibited. President / Director / CEA: Tim Slowinski SlowArt Productions, 123 Warren Street, Hudson, NY 12534, Tel: 518-828-2343, SlowArt@aol.com, www.slowart.com Financed in part by a grant from the UCODA Institute for Developmental Studies in the Arts
Produced 2010 in Hudson, New York, USA
Printed in The Peoples Republic of China www.directart.org
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Dissecting Terror Acrylic on panel 10” x 8”
LIMNER GALLERY 123 WARREN STREET HUDSON NY 12534 www.limnergallery.com 6 Direct Art / Volume 17
FACES AND NUDES ...and unpaid bills
DAN LYDERSEN notions of spirituality
SOCIO-POLITICAL ICONOGRAPHY in the modern world
PAT HOBAUGH a personal reflection
TIMOTHY P FRENCH drilling for art with GoDevil
CLIFTON HARVEY unexpected conclusions
A SHOW OF HEADS ten artists interpret the head
plus... RANDOM ACTS OF BEAUTY and genius in chaotic format
Strongtree Organic Coffee Roasters Small batch roasted daily using traditional, time honored methods in historic Hudson, NY.
Tom Swope GALLERY “Antiquities From Around The World” 307 Warren Street Hudson, NY 12534 518-828-4399
www.tomswope.com This is a Longshan culture jade Plaquette of a Shaman in transformation, thus the semi human fierceness with fanged mouth. It is about 2.5 inches high.
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Nine Heads with Squares, Oil on canvas, 72” x 72” One of several mask type paintings. Painted in the Arnold Blanch studion in 1981.
Faces and Nudes
barn that had been donated to the organization. It was formerly owned by a member of the Guggenheim family who wrote popular novels under the name Jane Burr. The WAA used it for a time as an art school and then abandoned it. I proposed that a group of artists move into the house and restore it in lieu of rent. They accepted the offer and we moved from the chicken coop to the Burr house. I lived and painted at the house rent free for four years. The low cost of living opened up large swaths of time, time to work, to think and to dream. More than anything else, time is what I needed to develop as an artist and the house provided that—but as a project the house was doomed from the start. I was seen as the person in charge and responsible for the success or failure of the project, but the WAA refused to give me any authority to actually manage the occupants. There was no system to filter out the slackers. Early on work done communally on the property ended up with one or two people doing all the work, so things were divided up. Each artist had a section of the house assigned to them to repair. Even the front lawn was carved into pieces like a pie, with each person responsible to mow one section. This quickly degenerated. The lawn became a mohawk haircut, some sections two feet long, others mowed down. Some walls of the house were scraped and painted clean,
by Tim Slowinski I left the tent room with artist Jane Millet and we moved into a small summer cottage on the other side of town. Berrien tried to hang on for a while, sleeping on the cottage floor, but then he met a woman who claimed to be the ex wife of Woody Allen and moved into her apartment. Jane and I moved several times, searching for better and less expensive live/work space. We shared a house that was the former home of Woodstock artist Arnold Blanch, then moved to a caretaker cabin behind a house that was once the home of Ralph Whitehead, the founder of the art colony called Byrdcliffe. The cabin was tiny, I think it was once a chicken coop. We paid seventy five dollars along with an agreement to mow the lawn of the main house. It was owned by Whitehead descendents who showed up one or two weekends a year to reminisce. There were two rooms one over the other, the lower room was so narrow I could stand with arms outstretched and touch both walls, one of them concrete that dripped water on humid days. Behind the building was the woods. Once raccoons broke in and tore the kitchen up, dumping flour, pasta and anything they could get their paws on all over the place. For a studio I worked a deal with the local crafts guild to renovate an abandoned building nearby, it was about the size of a two car garage, a part of the former Byrdcliffe colony they now managed. The deal went sour when they reneged on our agreement, tripling my rent after the job was done by adding “administrative fees.” By todays standards it was a pittance, but on principle I refused to pay them. Another group in town, the Woodstock Artists Association, (aka WAA) owned a large farm house and 8 Direct Art / Volume 17
Primal Conflict, Pencil and acrylic on board, 40” x 30” From the series of painted drawings using primial face painting. Painted in 1982 at the Byrdcliffe garage studio.
Nude in FourParts, 36” x 45” Pencil and acrylic on museum board and plywood
These are two of a number of nudes created at the Burr House during 198283. These were part of a series of farily large scale works in this style. The entire series was dispersed. Some pieces were sold, some deconstructed and one piece ended up as a roof on my tractor shed.
Fragmented Nude, 96” x 48” Pencil and acrylic on museum board and plywood
others crumbling and peeled. Even the refrigerator became deranged with milk and juice cartons, bread and bags of produce taped and stapled shut with names written on them. Phone calls went unclaimed and unpaid, antiques began to disappear. Some artists immersed themselves in alcohol leading to fits of incongruous piano banging and destruction of property. The artists were incapable of functioning communally. Gradually the place transformed into some sort of halfway house for socially dysfunctional artists. The house was good for making art and during this period my artwork went through a series of changes. The photo based, fractured realism developed into a series of mask like faces floating on color fields. The mask faces developed as mixed media drawings with acrylic washes on paper and board, utilizing a blend of personal, portrait imagery mixed with primal face painting and abstract forms. The drawings then developed into a series of large scale nudes. Using the artist Jane Millet as my model, I worked up large pencil drawings in precise detail. When finished I would cut the drawings into pieces and glue them to plywood blocks, reassembling the drawings on larger wooden boards creating a multitiered surface that would then be painted with acrylics. In the middle of the series our relationship ended and Jane left the Burr house to pursue a design career in Manhattan. Despondent, I sold several of the pieces at a local gallery for flea market prices and vowed never to use a physical object again as the subject for my art. I had no idea what I would do and for quite some time, I did nothing at all. A blank canvas sat on the easel. I spent a lot of time looking at it, reading and lying in bed. www .slowart.com/slow www.slowart.com/slow www.directart.org
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The Juggler, Acrylic, 48" x 33"
Harold Martin haroldmartinfineart.com At left: The Scarecrow, Acrylic, 50" x 36" www.directart.org
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Welcome to the Dollhouse Oil on canvas 38” x 40” When I was a child I would often mistake my dreams for reality. I would always have this dream of finding lots of coins on the ground on my way home from school. Since my allowance was not much at that time, I would cry when I found out that finding all those coins was just a dream. To this day I still have dreams that are too colorful and too real to be called just dreams. I think what we experience in our dreams could be another reality. We witness things that could never have occurred in reality as well as experience things that are so real we can’t believe it was just a dream. I often meet future and past versions of myself in my dreams. I really believe that I am actually meeting myself in another dimension through my dream. What makes a dream both a dream and reality? Both reality and dreams are experienced through the mind? One we consider to be real
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(at right) In My Dream Oil on canvas 90” x 72” and the other a fantasy—this is why I am so attracted to the stories and images of cartoons and comic books. When reading a comic there are many moments when I forget about reality—but maybe those colors and that world exist in another time and space that could also be called reality—maybe that world is reality and this world is the fantasy? Maybe with my paintings I am creating another reality or another dimension with its own time and space?
Yoonkyung Kim www.yoonkyungkim.com
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Dan Lydersen My recent paintings are a reconciliation between past and present, particularly in regard to Western cultureâ€™s notions of spirituality and the relationship between society and nature. Drawing from a variety of contemporary and historical sources, the paintings are an attempt to come to terms with the present through the immediate marriage of todayâ€™s visual culture with that of the past. Both theatrical and satirical, comical and somber, the paintings pose a view of humanity that is steeped in the existential turmoil that lies between materiality and spirituality, where society trudges persistently forward while the human search for meaning and purpose as mortal animals remains unresolved. Having its roots in the Renaissance and manifesting itself in all manner of contemporary media, the notion of the rectangle as a window into an alternate reality has become an inherent mode of viewing in human culture. Whether via canvas, computer or television screen, there exists an eager willingness to suspend oneâ€™s disbelief and subscribe to the illusion of simulated space depicted on a two-dimensional surface. In my work, this notion of the rectangle as window is utilized to present fragments of narratives that are 14 Direct Art / Volume 17
Akupara, Oil on canvas, 12" x 16" Akupara re-imagines an old helicopter landing-pad that stood adjacent to my old studio. Every time I entered or exited the building, the concrete tower loomed overhead and I would imagine a spectre of myself stranded up there.
imbued with a degree of reality while also recognizing themselves as fictional constructs. Consisting of familiar archetypes from historical painting to contemporary popular culture, these narratives seek to draw focus on the grotesqueness, beauty, comedy, and horror that lie just beneath the surface of the ordinary. In this way, the rectangle is not only a window but also a kind of fun house mirror that reflects an image of the real world while distorting it into something otherworldly. The images themselves come from many different places. Some are calculated references to art history or contemporary culture and others are the result of free association, improvisation or imaginative flights of fancy. Some paintings aspire towards coherent satire or self-reflexive commentary on the nature of painting while others use history and current events as a loose foundation for constructing open-ended narratives. Some paintings are simply imaginative explorations executed for the sake of satisfying my own curiosity. In any case, central to each painting is a particular worldview that seeks to balance tragedy with comedy, beauty with ugliness, and rationality with uncertainty.
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Soft Serve, 60" x 36", Oil on canvas (page 15) In Soft Serve the conventional ploys of fast food advertising have been twisted into a child’s candy-land fantasy gone awry. Surrounded by the plastic junk-food toys that are used to initiate the young into specific habits of consumption, a plump little baby reveals a peculiar amused acceptance of the lactose baptism being administered by an overly-saccharin costumed character. Invoking the Camel Joes and Ronald McDonalds of the world, this character exhibits an illusory benevolence whose menacing undertones are further accentuated by the infestation of pigeons creeping in from every corner. Little Lamb, 48" x 36", Oil on canvas (Pg. 17) Little Lamb employs the familiar trope of aristocratic portraiture to construct a character as an emblem of the patriarchal posturing exhibited in U.S. foreign policy. For many years the U.S. has posed itself as a protector and defender of freedom and democracy throughout the world, but its interventions in other countries often end up making situations worse. Sometimes this is an unfortunate bungling of good intentions but often these interventions are backhanded ways of attempting to further our own nation’s prosperity in the name of certain political ideals. Standing above his flock of sheep with an air of smug self-importance, the boy shepherd in Little Lamb is an embodiment of these tendencies in U.S. foreign relations. Convinced that he is wise and powerful beyond his years, the young shepherd’s ineffectuality and self-deception are evidenced by the sheep carcass at his feet and the useless plastic gun he holds in his hand. One of his flock chews at a sore on its diseased leg while another hangs skinned from a tree. Meanwhile the boy flaunts his machismo by donning various relics of American sports and military culture, from his foam “Number One!” finger and cowboy hat to the red-white-and-blue ribbons, flowers, and feathers that decorate his naval-like uniform. Ronald, 12" x 12", Oil on panel (Above) With the increase of globalization, the hegemony of advertising culture has become nearly absolute. There are fewer and fewer places in the world where the iconic golden arches aren’t looming somewhere on the horizon like the double-headed eagle of the Roman Empire. Ronald is a painting that simply re-imagines the omnipresence of global business culture and mass advertising as a familiar kidnapping scenario involving a scary clown and a frightened child. Vivarium, 16" x 12", Oil on canvas (At right) Vivarium is another painting that seeks to reveal the strangeness of ordinary life. The painting is a personal response to the slight culture shock I experienced relocating from an urban environment to an idyllic little city in the country. Crime, homelessness, and trash-littered streets were replaced by perfectly manicured grass lawns, topiary and immaculately clean sidewalks. Living on the edge of town, one could not ignore the abrupt division between a controlled environment and the more wild and rural land beyond, which only accentuated the artificiality of the town’s order and cleanliness. And so the comfort and bounty of a typical American town came to resemble a kind of vivarium, where all one’s needs seemed to be easily provided for and protected against the outside world. The notion is simply an illusion though, and the boundaries between civilization and wilderness remain as purely human constructs.
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The More Things Change, Oil on Canvas, 14" x 18" (above) In this day and age the philosophy behind Manifest Destiny and British Imperialism may seem extinct, but to what extent does it still reveal itself in the various wars and economic struggles between present-day nations? Many images of racism and violence from the past decade are suspiciously reminiscent of colonialism in the U.S. and Britain. Based on a 19th Century illustration of British soldiers practicing their swordsmanship on effigies of Indian stereotypes, The More Things Change re-presents the historical image as a carnival cutout attraction with trompe lâ€™oeil peeling paint. This painting within the painting, while in a state of gradual decay, is still quite recognizable and is available to any participant whoâ€™s willing to climb behind it and put their face where the soldierâ€™s ought to be. The implication is one of shared responsibility in either the maintenance or the final abolition of the remnants of imperialism.
Self-Portrait with Piercing and Periscope, Oil on canvas, 16" x 12" (At right) This painting is a play on the age-old genre of self-portraiture and the relationship between appearance and identity. Not a statement so much as an exploration, the painting is an attempt to depict an anonymous self whose character is manifested almost solely in the external.
Dan Lydersen www.danlydersen.com
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Ayatollah Blast-a-hole-a (Massacre of the Innocents) Photomontage 17â€? x 25â€?
James F. Cleary, B.F.A. Cleary Pathographics www.mnartists.org/James_F._Cleary,_B.F.A. 20 Direct Art / Volume 17
TAMARA STASER-MELTZER Mary Collage 31” x 42”
TAMARA STASER-MELTZER www.tamarastasermeltzer.com
Religious Icons in today's world may evoke many different responses, from religious reverence to secular indifference. They can be beautiful, quirky, touching, or strange, but I think few would find them controversial. Their history, however, involves the most controversial debate in the Christian Church -- one that would define the religion and change the face of the world. Take a moment to imagine an art history book without the patronage of the church. Not only was it responsible for funding countless artisans and guilds, but today it influences scores upon scores of contemporary artists. But none of that would even exist if the founders of one of the world’s most influential religions had decided to side with the Iconoclasts and ban all images in their churches. Eva Haustein-Bartsch writes extensively on how as the early Christian church grew, it needed to get its story straight. Who or what exactly was Jesus? Was he a man who God spoke through, or was he actually God? After much debate, the council of Nicaea determined in 325 he was a little of both. As a result, it was decided that Icons (from the Greek Eikon which means a depiction or likeness) could be made but could not be worshiped. Muslim conflicts in the 8th century left the
church divided again and a civil war led to the destruction of nearly every Icon that existed in the Byzantine Empire, and eventually brought about the second council of Nicaea in 787. Icons were defended by the church's belief in Acheiropoieta, which are Icons not made by human hands, such as the Veil of Veronica (veri=true icon=image).The church determined that these, along with a portrait of the Virgin Mary that was believed to be painted with her permission by John (the Hodegetria) were sanctioned by God and therefore allowed. Also it was determined that these images, like the cross, were merely symbols. This was extended to include any images directly copied from these sources and so churches all over Christiandom were allowed their own versions. As time went on and more copies were made, they became more and more unique. From this point on, science more so than theology has influenced the course of art history, from the use of lenses and the focus on humanity of the Renaissance, to the invention of photography and now digital media in our contemporary world. But none if it might exist if the early church had decided to take a literal read on one of the Ten Commandments and ban images in their entirety. - Kimberly Zsebe
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Genuine Mary, Oil and Aluminum on Board, 13" x 9" is based on the Virgin of the Passion (1579) from the Monestery of Saint Catherine. The Virgin of the Passion is also known as the Virgin of Perpetual Help and the Virgin of the Thumb. This is one of the first of my Icon series before I developed Pepsi as a symbol for Jesus and the New Testament and still done in my regular medium, oil instead of the traditional egg tempera. Christian themes dominate my work. My philosophical studies have been focused for years on the foundations of a religion that has been one of the world’s super powers. This is reflected in my recent paintings series that explores the role of Icons in both the traditional and contemporary sense. Icon painting is conventionally based on very strict guidelines. They are usually copies of original images that are believed to be sanctioned by God. An Icon’s power and validity was directly related to its level of resemblance to the original image. I have developed a series of work to include traditional compositions and the egg tempera medium; however, I have replaced the often-used silver revetment, which originally served to protect the images (and later to help speed up mass production by allowing less painted areas), with aluminum from our own 22 Direct Art / Volume 17
Kimberly Zsebe Socio-political iconography contemporary consumer beverage icons. In today’s world, Coca-Cola might be said to be more successful in converting masses to their product than any religion in history has been in converting people to their faith. Coca-Cola claims that more than 50 billion of their beverages are consumed every day. It would appear that mass consumerism has replaced Mass for many of us. The long-term effects of this new “religion” are still not clear. There is very little in our lives that is not effected by popular culture’s exaltation of youth and consumption. It is my intention that my work opens a dialogue and an awareness of the effects of the consumerism that has created our own modern-day commercial Icons which so many have come to rely on and that influence our own personal values.
Saint Maya Woodcut 24” x 16”
Saint Justine Woodcut 24” x 16”
Sergio G. Villamizar Socio-political iconography The Saint Series is a critical examination of political and cultural righteousness in contemporary America. The works were created by co-opting traditional, Western-European woodcutting techniques used for relief printing of Medieval and Byzantine religious tableaus to create pastiches of what the artist’s calls “Saints.” Each image combines strategically chosen socio-political iconography with historical and contemporary pop-culture imagery to fabricate a new patron saint of various, different American values. Each “Saint”, surrounded by those symbols, affects, and trappings that they embody, puts into question the virtues placed on the aspect of American culture they represent.
My ideas come from the environment that surrounds me, posters, bill boards, magazines, television, the internet, books, dreams, etc. Saint Morphea for instance is my reaction to reality shows like “the swan,” “Doctor 90210,” fashion magazines, billboards, etc. Why have we as a society become obsessed with our bodies? More and more people are dieting, joining gyms and submitting themselves to surgical procedures in an attempt to get closer to the elusive “ideal body.” But who decides what is and is not desirable? Who decides what is and is not beautiful? What are the social and cultural repercussions of trying to live up to this ideal?
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Kimberly Zsebe, Moses, Aaron and the Mountain, Egg Tempera and Aluminum on Board, 17"x11" This painting has its source in the doors of the Chapel of St. John at Mount Sinai, another Monastery of Saint Catherine Icon. It includes a version
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of the Annunciation. The boards of this series of Icons are all cutting boards. These common household items are transformed into something beyond themselves.
Sergio Villamizar, Saint Petro, Woodcut, 24” x 16” The hyena is associated with dark wisdom, being cowardly and greedy and symbolizes the foolishness of man’s wisdom. The lion (Leo) is used as a symbol of power. In the Roman Empire, Christians were torn apart
and eaten by lions, an allegorical expression of the way in which the Roman Empire defeated and consumed enemies of the state. Centaurs are ruled by their instincts. They symbolize violent lust, adultery, vengefulness, brutality, heretics, and the Devil. www.directart.org
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Kimberly Zsebe, Crucifixtion - Change the World, Oil and aluminum on board 12" x 8" makes use of a limited edition Pepsi can which proclaims "give a year change the world" and asks "are
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you ready to change the world?" along with other motivating phrases. The Icon has is bases in a 9th century Icon which is found in Athens at the Byzantine Museum.
Sergio Villamizar, Saint Morphea, Woodcut, 24â€? x 16â€? The cat in this piece is associated with desire, pride and vanity. Other symbols are infinity and transformation.
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Kimberly Zsebe www.zsebe.com Kimberly Zsebe, St. Michael One/Zero, Egg tempera and aluminum on board, 13" x 9" is based on a 19th century Russian Icon. He is seen fighting a Demon as Babylon drowns. He carries the
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book and a trumpet of Judgment. The words one and zero are representing this battle.
Sergio Villamizar firstname.lastname@example.org Sergio Villamizar, Warrior Saint, Woodcut, 24â€? x 16â€? The crow is the omen of death, associated with battle, a trickster. The symbol of radiation represents the threat of nuclear war. The skull represents death and mortality. The all-seeing eye of the
government, used on our dollar bill is reminiscent of the eye of Horus (Egyptian sun god) and was used by pagans to ward off evil. The pyramid signifies strength and duration. www.directart.org
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Never really knowing it was always mesh and lace Oil/latex on canvas 36" x 48"
A literal and figurative evisceration
Pat Hobaugh www.PatHobaugh.com
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My figurative work is a personal reflection on the human experience of sorrow, anxiety, fear, doubt, apostasy, pain and longing that accompany the event of a health crisis. These paintings represent the experience that my wife and I went through during her recovery period after colorectal surgery, wherein the universal emotions listed above are symbolically expressed on the canvases. The realist rendering of the figures reflects the reality of the situationâ€™s effect on the body. The exaggerated proportion of the head further reflects how thoughts and mental processes become distorted and deteriorated in such a situation. The backgrounds are mental projections, painted in gray flattened colors to further separate them from the figures. They represent memories and possibilities, which are both reality and enigma.
My Saint Oil and acrylic on canvas 12" x 12"
This work depicting a skull in a priest’s shirt is one of a series of portraits, which depict family members waiting during a 7-hour surgery my wife had this past summer. The dead priest is a metaphor for my loss of faith, which was very much missed during these 7 hours. The other portraits are depictions of the experience of ‘waiting,’ while a loved one is having major surgery. These portraits are done in a high realism to reflect the reality of the situation that influenced them. The surfaces are kept flat and controlled to keep the focus on the subject and not on the paint that created the image. Unlike in previous work, where my attention was on variation in surface texture and tactile paint
qualities, my current intent is using the act of painting as meditation and catharsis. The compositions and empty backgrounds are also meant to be reflective of the experience, which is more concerned with emotions and feelings, rather than being a record of a specific time and place. In conjunction with these works, I also plan on exploring the trying time of my wife’s recovery after this first surgery. Using portraits and multi-figured compositions on large canvases, I will meditate upon this experience of emotional, mental, and physical hardship with the hope of further catharsis.
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Go Devil Oil on panel 36â€? round
Timothy P French www .kitsch22art.com www.kitsch22art.com 32 Direct Art / Volume 17
Awaken Oil on panel 12â€? x 12â€?
The term Go Devil in oil drilling is a controlled explosive device designed to clear blocked pipes of all obstruction, allowing the oil to flow freely. In railroad terms it is a rail car designed to carry two men up the tracks ahead of the train to clear any possible obstructions. I have found my past obstructed by poor judgment, addictions and unhealthy alliances. These obstructions were mostly of my own design. I had reached a place where I had become my own enemy. I could not move. In fact, that was how I felt about my entire life. My life was a prison. I was a prisoner and the Jailer; however, I had the keys to my own freedom. This realization did not come quickly or easily. I spent too many years
with no self respect, but completely self centered. The people I chose to yoke myself with were equally self-loathing and selfish. This life style left me physically exhausted, mentally crippled, and spiritually dead, yet it continued on for years. Then came that great day fourteen years ago that changed my life and would later directly influence the creation of the painting I titled Go Devil. That day I experienced was a moment of absolute clarity. The obstacles were gone. It was a miracle, an answered prayer, an apocalypse that after fourteen years is still unfolding and revealing an image of what I was, and am becoming. It is my opinion that through self actualization one can easily realize the collective human condition. www.directart.org
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Resistance Oil on panel 8” x 10”
Obey Oil on panel 5” x 8”
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Paradime Shift Oil on panel 5” x 8”
Fruedian Overkill Oil on panel 12â€? x 12â€?
In this painting, the device that clears the way is a male figure, part human with a serpentine tail in place of legs. I envision the figure as dwelling in the sky. He destroys in order to make room for a personal shift in perspective. He is not necessarily evil or wrong, even though he carries a spirit of death in a cage on his head. The Go Devil cast no judgment, but serves the will of what I believe to be the truth. I think of the painting as a confession, and the beginning of a healing process. While executing this painting I came to believe some struggles are vital for the integration of the perceived perils of man in his environment. It is important for me to find and understand the source of my suffering in order to obtain wisdom and personal insight. Often I discover in hind sight that my suffering is necessary to perpetuate
the arrival of a personal revelation. In my work I seek only the truth. It is written in the Aztec Codex that there is a self within ourselves that we must sacrifice, and our own hearts must be torn out of the false being and offered to the light (Daniel Pinchbeck, 2012: The Return of Quetzalcoatl). Go Devil represents a clearing of the way: the death of the false self, and an offering to the light of hope.
Timothy P French www.kitsch22art.com
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Clifton Harvey I enjoy the dialogue between a work of art and the viewer and how unexpected conclusions can be drawn based on our unique experiences. These unpredictable associations may not be consciously made by the viewer, but rather felt deeply, like a sensation of nostalgia for something they never personally experienced. Even before I could read, the experiences I had with viewing images shaped how I would later create my work. As a child, I remember watching Mickey’s Christmas Carol and feeling deeply wounded as a heartbroken Mickey Mouse placed an abandoned crutch next to Tiny Tim’s grave. The pathos depicted in that moment left a lasting impression and inspired me to create my own narratives. I discovered photography while in college and was fascinated by the camera’s ability to freeze a moment. I began to experiment with digitally combining my illustrations into environments I photographed, allowing ideas in one medium to inform and inspire concepts for the other, resulting in my own kind of photographic truth. Working in a directorial mode, I precisely arranged the elements in my shots, which served as a reference for lighting and perspective while setting a dramatic stage for my illustrated creations. The culmination of these labors resulted in my thesis work, Left Behind. A meditation on personal indignities and an allegory on the passing of childhood, the graphic narrative approach to this work is expanded upon in my latest series, The Conductor. Drawing upon influences such as comic books, film, cartoons like Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies, and the dark visions depicted in Goya’s Los Caprichos, my aim was to create a narrative that explored the theme of disappointment while attempting to cope with the shame of unfulfilled ambitions. The passage from the book of Matthew, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth”, served as a conceptual starting point. I asked myself “who are the meek and what happens when they inherit the earth?” I imagined a deserted world now inhibited by a variety of creatures that were broken, in both body and spirit. Among this host, I specifically pictured a displaced corporate mascot, abandoned by a society that once revered him, a stilted beast of burden who has grown complacent with being manipulated, and a puddle-bellied brute fascinated with 36 Direct Art / Volume 17
Lost and Found Composite photo illustration 16.37" x 8”
socks. Scenarios involving these characters and others came to mind that forced me to question how we might reclaim our own missing parts and whether some things are worth mending. The bleak world of The Conductor is a place I plan on continuing to explore in future works.
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Dreadful Delights Composite photo illustration 12.45” x 8”
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An Empty Offer Composite photo illustration 12.45" x 8â€?
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At the Gaping Threshold Composite photo illustration 15" x 8â€?
It is fair to say that one of the main interests I have always had in the making of art is the nature of the image. The image is slippery. It instantly seduces. Its meaning morphs and changes with time, place, and with each new person who looks upon it. It is precisely this strange looseness of meaning, this confluence of symbols and contexts, this pocket of enigmatic energy that I am so drawn to. I look for contradictions in my imagery. I prefer the enigma to the reasoned argument, and it is my hope that my drawings reflect as much. My personal aesthetic has always been in the space where symbols collide like opposing oceans tides, and structured reason gives way to the beautiful, unconscious, and abject monster. It is important to me that my imagery affects on an emotional level. I choose to precisely control the medium, craft, and composition; while allowing the various images and their
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Graphite on paper
16â€? x 20â€?
symbology to bubble up from the unconscious through dreams, free-association, and collage. I hope my work is as fragmented, confused and beautiful as the emotions I feel for my child. I hope those that look at my work feel its effect (as opposed to think its meaning), are seduced by its craft and are swallowed by what they cannot articulate. It is not thought nor meaning at the forefront of my endeavours, but feeling; a strange feeling, that you have seen this before and that you are somehow connected.
Lance Moon www.lancemoon.com email@example.com
The Waking Edge
This work is of the precise point when conscience is awakened, the experience of sudden reality. It happens when we first wake and it happens suddenly, unexpectedly in life’s journey.
Graphite on illustration board
39” x 31”
Armin Mersmann www.arminmersmann.com firstname.lastname@example.org www.directart.org
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Mad Science Oil on canvas 19” x 24” Part of the Incognito Series. The series is an exploration of dreams followed and futures imagined. It examines what a costume can reveal or disguise. These paintings are adventure and magic, a confiding of our secret selves. They are answers to the question “So, what do you want to be when you grow up?”
Terry Strickland www.terrystricklandart.com www.terrystricklandart.blogspot.com
Enlightenment Oil on panel 24” x 24” Part of the Building a Life Series. A quest for enlightenment must include a questioning of traditional thinking and a search for something deeper than what’s apparent on the surface. That’s a rather intangible idea to communicate in the visual world of paint. Chiaroscuro and an expression of wonder were the perfect instruments to communicate this concept. The symbolic nature of light and darkness; its near perfect analogy for opposites and its power to evoke the struggle between good and evil. The sheer drama of it is tantalizing and seductive!
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The Laundress Oil 28" x 24"
M Gallery of Fine Art
Oleg Radvan www.28art.com email@example.com
16 South Palm Avenue | Sarasota FL www.directart.org
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Above and Below
Acrylic on canvas
24" x 36" Equilibrium
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Acrylic on canvas
24" x 36"
Random Acts of Beauty
Acrylic on canvas
Acrylic on canvas
24" x 72"
24" x 24"
www.jonathanfrankstudio.com firstname.lastname@example.org www.directart.org
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Steven: The Alcoholic Rabbit Killer, Sterling silver, 24k gold leaf, 14k gold powder, brass, copper, natural lacquer, maple wood, sand, found leather, patina, 9" x 6" x 5" Photographed by Bruce Fox
Rachel Timmins www.racheltimmins.com Modification, manipulation and mutation are concepts that are prominently featured in my figurative work and in how I choose to life my life. Modification has changed the way that I see myself and the way the rest of the world responds to my appearance. The choice to heavily modify and permanently adorn my body has made my life both difficult and rewarding. Many of my works include stitching and repetition expressed in metal and fiber, which are powerful ways of showing the process of physical healing, emotional restoration and metamorphosis. The wearable yet non-functional jewelry that I create constricts the wearerâ€™s movements and allows both the viewer and the wearer to step into my place in this world. I use both humor and irony to create layers of meaning in my pieces and I strive for works to create a push-pull feeling between the viewer and the pieces simultaneously attracting and repelling their gaze. In my current work, I try to show how our experiences can consume and change us into something that we never knew we could be.
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Gerald: The Vulture Lobster Mutant, Sterling Silver, 14k gold powder, natural lacquer, steel springs, liquid electrical tape, patina, 3.5" x 3" x 1.5" Photographed by KC Kratt
Welded steel, found objects
30" x 80" x 23"
Mixed media assemblage
15" x 55" x 10"
My work uses found objects and welded steel to embrace the contradictions found in a highly industrialized society which threatens the very eco-system that it exists within.
Jud Turner www.judturner.com www.directart.org
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Anatomical Displacements-09 Digital variable size In â€œSensory Displacementsâ€?, scientific images of anatomical and molecular illustrations are juxtaposed upon backgrounds of chaotic, deconstructed images of human figures.
Douglas Prince http://douglasprince.com http://douglasprince.com/wp 48 Direct Art / Volume 17
Pluck Oil on Canvas 48" x 72"
My paintings present imagery taken from horror and exploitation films of the 1960â€™s and 1970â€™s. For a large portion of my life, I have had an abiding attraction to these films. To paint some of the images that have so influenced me is an attempt to better understand an enduring obsession, as well as to face the compelling challenge of combining low, trashy culture with the perceived high art of painting. The contradictory nature of most horror and exploitation pictures provides inspiration, because they are at once comic and sinister. Likewise, I hope to present the viewer with an image that is both appealing and troubling. The notion of morbid curiosity is examined in this work, along with issues concerning gender roles, viewing, consumption, and desensitization.
Sarah Boyce http://sarahmboyce.blogspot.com email@example.com www.directart.org
Volume 17 / Direct Art 49
A Day at the Beach Acrylic on canvas 30” x 40”
The people of Logic would not relent so we continued to struggle in the churning sea. Torture such as we endured cannot be imagined but the few of us who survived found a seaside home in the City of Desire. If you read this in your ivory tower fortified with intellectual tools and ample cash listen well to what transpired: The elected leaders secretly decided that to save the system the poor had to be sacrificed. In cold logic these Republicans were correct! They laved us with a lullaby of”democracy” as they entreated us to kneel and pray. The swarming Democrats sang “ Obama” and assured us of Heavens’ arrival on Earth. They lay lies like manure in a field exaggerating the worth of his Macciavellian mind.
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They all clasped our knees and bade us fight their wars and swallow their lies. All of the isms of their dollar spit us into dirt and squalor as newsprint wreathed us in tears. REALITY is: those that got...keep and those that got nothing are spent.
Michael J Heinrich www.michaeljheinrich.com firstname.lastname@example.org
Fridas Mixed media 20” x 24”
Luis Maldonado Manzanilla AKA: PAUL LAIZ Luis Manzanilla is a painter and writer with a mixed, highly developed style in which surrealism mixes the Latin American obsession with figurativism and a strong dose of romantic neoexpressionism. He mixes materials and technical approaches in order to achieve oneiric images, always looking for the paradox. He wrote “The Blood of the Star”, a novel combining his autobiography with lyrical recounts of the artistic procedures. He is also the author of “The Dialectics of Saturn”, a study of the “Raft of the Medusa” by Gericault and the Romantic painting. These two paintings are part of a large series, a gloss of FRIDA Kahlo´s work, a reinterpretation of her tortuous process of expressing the pain into beauty. There is also a rather ironical view concerned with the idealization process which turns the beauty into a fetishist connection with the image and the object. Represented by: Jorge Pimentel
Frida árbol Mixed media 20” x 24” www.directart.org
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Hardin Digital print on paper on board, epoxy resin 72” X 105” Hermosa Digital print on paper on board, epoxy resin 20 5/8” x 32 3/8”
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Washita Digital print on paper on board, epoxy resin 72” x 97”
Timon Meyer’s work illuminates the part of humanity, which lies beyond the reach of reason. Here truth is liberated from fact. The human being, emerging out of the darkness of it’s own existence during the perfect alignment of fabrication and imagination, casts itself as a mythological archetype in order to catapult itself to its rightful place: the center of the universe.
Meyer primarily works off stills taken from daytime television shows. He then digitally paints or collages over them to highlight the underlying ability of the protagonists to cast themselves in the most extreme mythological fantasies. The final prints are laminated onto boards and finally receive a thick coat of high gloss epoxy resin.
Timon Meyer www.timonmeyer.com email@example.com www.directart.org
Volume 17 / Direct Art 53
Floating Islands Digital 17" x 12"
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The Power Culture Digital 29" x 33"
Unable to find anything compelling on normal broadcast channels, W.J. (Bill) Bies turned his interest to a channel with an interfering signal. The visuals were extraordinary. The colors blended together. These visuals made such an impact on Bill, he was compelled to capture them. Beautiful faces normally displayed, were instead pulled and distorted, and colored in an array of unanticipated abstractions. Transmission lines bent and twisted in contrasts and vivid color. Bill has captured images, not of reality, but of a dream world or an altered state. Each image is individualistic at its foundation. A sense of graininess may appear when viewing an image closely. These are the distinct pixels coming together to form the larger image, in what Bill has termed, “Ditigal Pointillism”. The raw
captured image is only a base sketch of the final image which Bill has manipulated using color and layering techniques. Bill has been working on this project for two years, and has amassed a vast library of these “No Signal Images”. Bill is a graduate of Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California. Additionally, he also attended New York University Graduate Film Program. He has spent 14 years in commercial photography and film production.
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Neo-god 2 Oil on canvas 90” x 64”
Hsu Chih Wei
Neo-god 5 Oil on canvas 80” x 64”
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Seer (multiple) Mixed media 14" x 17" x 11" http://asktheseer.blogspot.com
Essentia (detail) Oil on paper 60" x 52"
Karen Wilcox Painting and Sculpture www.karenwilcox-studio.com
Venus in the Oilfield
•eljko Brguljan is an artist of melancholic mettle and subtle sensibility whose narratives depict the memoirs of his childhood, cultural history of his native land as well as motifs from world's art history. But, at the same time, he also makes comments on contemporary issues. In Venus in the Oilfield we can see the suffering of our planet Earth caused by man’s insanity. In his collages, built up on foundations of old images, Brguljan transforms the impulses from his surroundings into fantastic accounts of personal experiences. He works with different materials, starting with usual ones such as
9.8'’ x 12.2”
newspaper (often crumpled), photographs, thread, pieces of glass and mirrors, but alos including unusual materials such as sea-shells, fragments of broken light bulbs and bricks... All these elements the artist links into framed integrity applying on background china ink, watercolor, crayon and sometimes oil. •eljko Brguljan lives and works in Zagreb, Croatia.
Zeljko Brguljan firstname.lastname@example.org www.directart.org
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DJ Change and the Hopeless Party Pen/ink and digital 11" x 41" email@example.com
"The woodcut below, Observations of the Great American Disconnect, 36â€? x 72â€?, is a look at the reality gap in America.
Jon Renzella www.jrenzella.com
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In the Great Wide Open, Oil on canvas, 46" x 40," I paint an imagined future where the boundaries between the perceived world and the virtual world tangle. Mindless games and absurd rituals are standard practice. People who believe in truth of any kind are persecuted.
Caleb Weintraub www.calebweintraub.net
For God and Country Oil on canvas 18" x 24"
Bruce Hanke www.brucehanke.com
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American Ninja BW SG Photograph 14" x 11"
The Prince of Tides BW SG Photograph 14" x 11"
Professor Leo Theinert www.photo-galeria.com firstname.lastname@example.org Time is on My Side BW SG Photograph 11" x 14" 60 Direct Art / Volume 17
Woman on Table 40” x 42” Inkjet Print
This image is the result of a quest for the unknown, a rediscovery of our involuntary consciousness, one perfect asymmetry in an infinite world. My photography was born out of the struggle to interpret, examine, explore, feel and share my vision. This piece belongs to a series of a concept which I love to address as “bodyscape”… This figure study was shot with a 35mm camera and a roll of E6 film. The film was then scanned and digitally C printed.
Gaspar Marquez www.gasparmarquez.com email@example.com
Volume 17 / Direct Art 61
Taliban Photography 25” x 20”
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Border Fence Arizona Photography 20â€? x 25â€?
Born in Washington DC, Eric has always been fascinated with the world around him. As a child, he traveled across the country with his family, an act which instilled in him at an early age an abiding love of travel. His work focuses on issues of National and Global importance. Subjects such as the US border with Mexico and military training are two he readily chooses to examine. Eric earned his degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY, and currently resides in New York City, where he pursues both commercial and artistic photographic endeavors, always seeking to explore and challenge the world around him. His work has appeared in Wallpaper, Rolling Stone, Flaunt and recently won best personal series in the PDN Photo Annual. He is currently hard at work on publishing his first book.
Eric White http://www.whiteblackwhite.com www.directart.org
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Desert Photography 12”x 20”
Dunes Photography 12”x 20”
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Crevasse Photography 12â€?x 20â€? While many artists are exploring elements of the outer world, the inner world is left to many curiosities. Questioning psychological and metaphysical themes of oneâ€™s self are of great interest. Metaphors of the human figure and other allegorical figures represent many ideas and philosophies found in much of my work. Intention can make or break validity in a work of art. The world needs more than one popular point of view carried by one collective movement. Humanity begs for diversity in ideas and valid interpretations. More valuable than a blunt statement is an image that represents a plethora, or web, of relative ideas and can be subject to multiple interpretations; this is how an art piece becomes a conversation piece. Feeling provokes question, question invokes thought, and thought evokes knowledge. The human body has been represented in art since the beginning of history, yet has also been some sort of a target for criticism, misunderstanding, controversy, and subject to approval by society as a whole. The quarrels evolve through time and are controlled by context and sociopolitical climates. The role of the human body in art is very diverse and may serve various means and purposes. Formally, the body can be broken down into line, shape, contour, light/shadow, textures, value, and many other esthetical design elements. The human body is natural and is no wonder that so many visuals found in nature bestow similar elements, creating a type of mimesis. The landscape is no exception to this phenomenon. Bodies of land and human bodies may yield
many common visual characteristics. The two contain many of the same elements and depend on one another for sustenance. Perhaps the two forms possess a common energy, life force, or spirit? My goal is to provide the world with another point of view, from ideas to art, theology to thought, politics to perspectives, and science to sight using complex and experimental methodologies. Our time on this earth, at this given moment, has great affect and has everything to do with how we will become as an existence. Art is one way to establish voice and identity to insight change and understanding towards a common goal of truth. There are many artists, past and present, to be inspired by. Other artwork does not usually weigh heavily as an influential factor in my work. I am inspired by music, nature, curiosity, question, possibility, memory, truth, and all of the experiences of senses. Art is my expression and reaction to society, psychology, experiences, religion, and politics. Art, to me, is a guide through life. There are many things in my mind and this world, many of which, I do not understand. The process of fine art is a healing method in which I am able to exercise thoughts, feelings, memories, and understanding through this gift of cleansing and guide to the truth.
Shawn Saumell www.shawnsaumell.com www.directart.org
Volume 17 / Direct Art 65
The Three Fates, Hand colored etching, 16" x 24"
The Fates determined the course of events for all things in Greco-Roman legend. The Parcae carried out the plans of Fatum and may have evolved from her in myth until, they became the dominant embodiments of fate. Several references mention varying or uncertain roles for each of the three-sister personifications. However, the most specific account says that Clotho, the youngest, strung the spindle/signifying birth, Lachesis spun the thread of life, thereby forming destiny for the individuals, Atropos, the eldest sister, cut it at death. I have elaborated upon the ancient notions in my departure from conventional treatment of the subject. Convention dictates that three maidens sit around a stick-like spool one of them holds as the others wind yarn around it or watch. They wear thick robes and dour expressions. Compositions tend to be frontal and freize-like. Perhaps todayâ€™s complexity or bustle suggested that the so-called Fabric of Life might inter-weave human destinies or chain reactions, deterministic obfuscations
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and synchronizations within its warp and woof. The cloth brocaded with symbols of life events or the loom conveys these ideas. The notion of fate as a continually unfolding series of episodes-finds its form in the laced figure that threads herself on the spinning wheel or in the other Fate weaving her hair. The latter, a naked hag (my tribute to Hans Boulding), stands for Fate Revealed, while the hooded figure (which is no more than cloaked balls, of string) demonstrates the opposite idea. The measure and stages of life are strung across the top of my modernized treatment.
Steve Hazard Albany, NY For more info contact: TheLimner@aol.com
Lady From Spain Prismacolor 18â€? x 24â€?
My drawings have always been a highly personal, intuitive self examination. They are a running dialogue of self conflict and ridicule. From a very early age drawing was an attempt to make sense of the real world or create an alternate world more under my control. The emotional way I perceive reality is often anti-logical and contrary to the rational universe. My work was influenced by the angst ridden art of artists of the German Expressionists; the detail oriented work of the artists of the Renaissance in northern Europe and may other more main stream sources. Comics, underground comic and various other pulp magazines have also been important to the development of my images. Television has also been a life-long obsession. As a child I can remember waking once a week to see the Flash Gordon serial with Buster Crab. Mexican Horror films such as the Rock and Roll Wrestling Women vs. the Aztec Mummy and low Budget films like the Wild World of the Bat Woman are a near obsession. I am a near compulsive hoarder of video tapes, then DVDs now Blu-Ray.
The evolution of my characters came from the interaction of humans and animals which represent the higher and lower nature of man. The animals are the more bestial side of man. Robotic and more personalized machines are a reference to man as creator. Man creates machines in his own image, full of their own short comings. Frequent reference to characters such bug, rats and other vermin show the constant presence of corruption. Every cookie has a bug wing in it somewhere.
Tom McKee firstname.lastname@example.org
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Aaron Wooten http://web.mac.com/aaronrwooten Marilyn at Home 2009 30” x 22” Enamel
Marilyn at home Lazy Eye A customer comes in and orders tuna. Her eye is slightly lazy. Not a Jean Sartre eyeball But just slightly lazy. Like Marily Monroe. One of those eyes that she could straighten out If she tried But she’s too damn tired and just got off of work. She’s beat. She’s beautiful. She looks at me with her good eye And stares straight through me with the other one. She’s distracted, disinterested, used. Like Marilyn Monroe. Like she is slowly dying. Like she was just slapped cockeyed By an abusive lover. Like she’ll stick around through anything. She’s committed. Like Marilyn Monroe. Edgar Allen Poe is right. The most beautiful thing Is a dying woman.
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Volume 17 / Direct Art 69
Old Man Jugs Stoneware, underglazes, stain 16" x 9.5" x 9.5"
Post Nuclear Dog Bronze
18” x 28” x 15”
HO BARON Ho Baron’s visuals have transformed dramatically over the years. His imagery’s been consistently “Ho,” but his experiments with the various art medium continues to mix and match. Once a photographer, Ho labored over superimposed and double exposed negatives to find his surreal imagery. “I was thrilled by the challenge of putting images atop each other to give my story mystery and levels of interpretation,” he said. “I also drew hundreds of sketches of odd figures in pen and ink, then I began drawing directly on my photo prints.” Ho had developed a unique drawing style. His aesthetic journey also took him to acrylics that added color and life to his scenarios. The artist grew enraptured by modeling in clay, and Ho translated his drawing style into sculpture. “My two dimensional images gained depth when translated into three dimensions, and I fell
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for the intense process of making a sculpture,” he said. “What a challenge to transpose my intuitive and spontaneous drawing style into complex clay forms then into molds and into bronzes.” Once there was a mold, Ho could also make cast stone and resin works. Lately, he’s been painting on his forms, even on his smaller bronzes. Ho models his clay into intricate motifs, with miniature caricatures he places on larger, often webbed, figurative forms. His figures often display protruding tongues as if to mock the viewer, and the tongues hold balls, an act exhibiting what the artist calls his “philosophy of balance.” His many faces represent humanity, likewise a oneness, and they are a visual translation of the Theory of the Multiple Self. His whimsical style lies somewhere amidst satire, fantasy and dark art, and he’s been called visionary as a result of the originality of his forms.
Most recently, Ho’s larger subjects have been of dancers, acrobats and contortionists. His largest work is on permanent exhibition at the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. The sculpture is “The Free Thinker,” a thousand pound bronze figure. Another of that size, “A Novel Romance,” adorns the El Paso Public Library, in the city where he lives. These are public art bronzes, but Ho also creates forms that are hand-held size, he makes reliefs such as “Innergration” and “Mother and Child,” and sculptures of all sizes such as “Post Nuclear Dog.” Because of the spirit with which he creates, Ho says “My approach to creating art has its roots in the ancients, produced with a creative force akin to the sculptors of the Mayan and the Hindu.” Half serious and half in jest, Ho calls his collection of sculptures “Gods for Future Religions.”
Free Thnker Bronze
84” x 28” x 36”
Ho’s figures often display protruding tongues as if to mock the viewer, meanwhile the tongues hold balls, an act exhibiting what the artist calls his “philosophy of balance.” His many faces represent humanity, likewise a oneness, and they are a visual translation of the Theory of the Multiple Self.
Innergration Bronze relief
15” x 9” x 4” www.directart.org
Volume 17 / Direct Art 71
JONATHAN HOBBS www.jhobbsclay.com Sabertooth, Bisque Stoneware 5" x 3.5" x 3.5" My sculptural work is mostly improvisational. The process is the same every time: I start by wedging a mass of clay to homogenize it and to remove air bubbles-slamming it against a table, kneading in the corners. Eventually, a human face emerges from the clay. I continue to refine the shape that is already there, poking with fingers, then with wooden tools. It’s like a Rorschach test-but one where I can change the inkblots to improve the image. This piece “Sabertooth” is special. It’s an improvisation on an improvisation. The old man was nearly finished when the cat started to emerge.
BURNELL YOW! www.ravenswingstudio.com Dolls of the Apocalypse #3 Mixed media, 6”h
The myth... Time-travelling archeologist, Burnell Yow!, journeyed through time to the year 2349. There he made a horrific discovery: human beings, once 6.5 billion strong on the planet, had disappeared, but not without a trace. Of the numerous artifacts recovered, perhaps the most compelling were the toys of the last children on Earth - the dolls, now long abandoned silent sentinels of death and destruction reveal a time of great upheaval and suffering for the species. What exactly became of humanity? What calamity befell those who have yet to even be born? War? Genetic mutations? Alien occupation? It has been said that the toys of childhood prepare one for the realities of adulthood. If this is true, then the recently discovered Dolls of the Apocalypse may well be preparing us for the end of life as we know it.
The reality... Mixed media artist Burnell Yow! has created a new horrific series of works utilizing Barbie torsos, other doll parts, costume jewelry, and other found objects put together in true Frankensteinian fashion.
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“Suit of Thorns” depicts the martyrdom of the modern white collar worker, a realm from which I myself escaped several years ago. The martyr earns his angel’s wings (however real or artificial) by fulfilling societal expectations to support his family, put a roof over their heads, put food on the table, and pay his bills. The items in the open briefcase speak to these obligations, and also to the necessary sacrifice of precious time they entail. The encircling thorns are meant to create the atmosphere of painful entrapment. I work within the basic framework of realism, with recognizable subject matter and the fundamental goal of making a two-dimensional surface look three-dimensional in a convincing way. But at the same time I transcend the limitations of realism, letting my imagination run rampant. I bend physical laws. I distort shapes and sizes. I combine disparate elements. I create improbable juxtapositions. This gives me greater capacity to articulate a particular idea and to create the desired visual and emotional atmosphere.
Suit of Thorns
Oil on board
28" x 38"
My work appears surrealistic however it is neither dream-based nor lacking in conscious control. And although I concede the germ of the idea for a given painting might have a subconscious component, I’m actually quite analytical in the development and execution of the piece (no doubt symptomatic of my previous career as an engineer). This reliance on my rational mind combined with the narrative quality of the work suggests the term “Magic Realism” would be a more accurate classification. Like most artists I paint what interests me, which can lead to a broad array of subjects. As a result my works portray humans and other animals, myths and religions, social and cultural boundaries, even the occasional autobiographical allusion. The tone may range from serious to quirky, but I always try to engage the subjects from an atypical perspective that finds both beauty and absurdity in our struggle to find our place - as individuals, as a society, as a species - in both the natural world and the “civilized” world we have created.
BLAKE FLYNN www.blakeflynn.com www.directart.org
Volume 17 / Direct Art 73
Ryan Harmon www.ryanharmonart.com Sitting, Mixed media, 48.5" x 51.5"
Dan Langston “Within 50 to 100 years, a new class of organisms is likely to emerge, these organisms will be artificial in the sense that they will originally be designed by man.” -----------------Doyne Farmer and Alleta Berlin, 1992. The truth to these artificial assemblages will lie in whether or not we, as creators, will be able to evolve faster than our new counter parts, or will we inevitably succumb to the emerging unknown necessities of this rapidly evolving new species. My art contemplates this curiosity and is the foreshadowing next step in the evolution of figurative sculpture. All three-dimensional forms created by man reflect their ideas, as with classical sculpture, the materials and ideals invoked were reflections of contemporary revelations. In comparison, my work embodies similar themes of physical and ethereal prowess. I explore what we believe to be the ideal, a cultural phenomena of habitual self-improvement. Although my enhancements are artificial, the overt human qualities evoke a sense of empathy while the viewer is still aware the object is synthetic. I enjoy manipulating this tenacious desire to connect with such comforting images of the pursuance of naturalism that are synthetically packaged. As an artist I am both the observer and creator, hypothesizing a new universal image incorporating both artificial advances and human imagery. My work “Nocturnal Chimera” explores both the reflective observation of a futuristic reality and encapsulates the simple beauty of this new beings’ awkward naivety. - Dan Langston 74 Direct Art / Volume 17
www.danlangston.com Nocturnal Cimera, Mixed media 30" x 24" x 36"
Hsin-His Chen www.hsin-his-chen.com A.E. Graphite, gesso, wood 4.25" x 8" x 3.25"
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Florence Still #1 Digital archival print 19” x 13”
Jonathan Ward Oil on Board 16” x 11”
Benjamin S. Paul
Sacred Mystery, Solvent Ink on Vinyl, 57" x 79"
Jason Miller Conceptual Artist www.soulrecorder.com email@example.com 76 Direct Art / Volume 17
Brook Reynolds Light, Sweet, Crude www.brookreynoldsphotography.com
Still Waters Nabi Gallery , NYC
Ted Hayward www.tedhayward.weebly.com firstname.lastname@example.org Early Snow: Japan 2009 American Art Awards 1st Prize
Summer Stream 2010 Collectorâ€™s Visual Art Guide, Best of Worldwide Artists Vol. I Mixed Media
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A SHOW OF HEADS
Oil and enamel on board
!HEADS UP! A SHOW OF HEADS The head is the seat of our consciousness, there is no doubt about it, as anyone who has been knocked severely on the head can attest. A blow to the head short circuits the brain, shuts it down and terminates the conciousness. Without our conciousness, nothing remains. Not even nothing remains, as nothing is a concept created by our conciousness. What remains can not even be described, it is a nameless void. This is why the billions of years that have passed since the big bang have no relevance to any living soul, since the perception of time is a 78 Direct Art / Volume 17
construction of our consciousness. To a disembodied head a zillion years or ten minutes are exactly the same, it does not matter. This no doubt is why the head is such an important and recurring subject in art. Due to it’s importance, the Limner Gallery annually hosts a “Show of Heads.” The 2009 Show of Heads at Limner Gallery featured the works of 26 contemporary artists working with “the head.” Some of our favorite heads from the show are displayed on the following pages.
A SHOW OF HEADS
My most recent work is inspired by ideas about identity, and has resulted in a series of portraits. Other paintings are about the rapidly changing urban landscape of London, New York and other cities The intention is to convey the sense of excitement engendered by conditions of light, space, scale and reflection resulting from the changing environment. I have recently expanded my subject matter to include ideas about church interiors and large scale heads. The paintings are developed from sketch book drawings and photographs taken on location. I find it necessary to produce the paintings at a remove from the subject to allow my imagination to distill the information gathered.
BRIAN ELWELL Patrick Moore
BRIAN ELWELL Desmond Tutu
Oil & enamel on canvas
Oil & enamel on board
Integral to the meaning of the work are the many different processes I use in creating the images. Some of the techniques involved include stencilling, printing, erasing and glazing in order to build up a layered surface which encompasses both organic and geometrical elements. Computor-aided manipulation and recombination of images also provides a fertile technique generating new and unexpected ideas At best the combination of these strategies involving reinvention, risk taking and unpredictability evokes the transitory nature of the subject itself.
Brian Elwell email@example.com
Volume 17 / Direct Art 79
JOHN WOLFE Sun Woodburning 24” x 48” firstname.lastname@example.org ERIC BOOS Bad Dog Ceramic 19” x 10” x 12” email@example.com
A SHOW OF HEADS
Art is how I express myself. All of my passions and interests find their way into my work. I begin each work with a theme and a design concept. An on-going study of the works of artists from many different cultures and spanning many periods helps me answer the creative questions I ask myself. While the work is in progress, I respond to what happens . . . until expression and order arise simultaneous. Lately I’ve been creating images with a torch, discovering that a surprisingly broad range of values and textures can be brought into play by varying the degree to which different areas of the design exposed to the flame. Deeply charred areas contrasting with parts of the surface left
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untouched by fire and progressions between these two extremes enliven the image with variety and movement. Most of the designs I’ve created using this technique are intensified by virtue of their arising amidst the play of rich blacks and volcanic textures characteristic of this medium. SUN exemplifies my enduring propensity to anthropomorphize celestial bodies in my work, even when they play a secondary role in an image. Early cartographers frequently bestowed human characteristics on the winds and heavenly bodies that embellished their maps as have many traditional societies in configuring their cosmologies. These images always add an intriguing, non rational dimension to the works and I gleefully continue the tradition. I want to create the most meaningful interesting and deeply felt pictures I am capable of and help other less experienced artists do the same. It has been my greatest reward as an educator to provide students with new tools and seeing the wonderful and varied uses to which they have put them. - JOHN WOLFE
“Bad Dog” is one of a series of painted head sculptures that I’m currently working on. Some are “animal” heads, some human, some weird hybrids. They all have a strong cartoon, or toy-like influence. Why cartoons/toys? For several reasons. For one thing, the simplified shapes give me more surface for painting. For another, the superficially light-hearted, even silly, appearance of the heads is a great cover for some the the murkier issues dealt with in the painting, playing off childish innocence with adult complexity. In this way, the heads can become a sort of bait-and-switch, luring in the viewer with color and humor, then revealing the more complex imagry swirling in the surfaces. I like to keep things complicated, contradictory, and puzzling in my art work. ERIC BOOS
A SHOW OF HEADS SERGE BELO Nadisâ€™s Dreams Acrylic 48" x 60" x 3" firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2005 the painter Serge Belo let go and surrendered to his true artistic feeling. He let his pictorial universe guide his time, thoughts and his life. His inspiration is a reflection of human nature and distant countries. His creations have a authentic technical complexity that recalls the spider weaving its web. Bearing surfaces of two-dimensional interlaced strings, Belo reveals a fascinating three-dimensional world parallel.
Each piece is born from a careful Zen-like ritual. Each step is lenghty process, a bas relief sculpture is molded, cast and then illuminated with colors. As a long meditation, thousands of small parts are assembled giving the irresistible urge to touch the surface . His work is a real pleasure for the eyes, which leads towards the sensory pleasures of touch. www.ianpepple.com Pape SERGE BELO www.directart.org
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A SHOW OF HEADS
CLARA DUTTON Under Pressure Lithograph 28" x 22" email@example.com
My art tends to have a hint of negativity. Consequently, when challenged to do a self-portrait I couldn’t help but show the less attractive side of myself. I sometimes minimize my accomplishments and magnify my faults. When I went to college, I developed an eating disorder and over-analyzed every perceived flaw on my body. This self-portrait accurately shows who I am because the viewer learns about how I look, and how I look at myself. I can get so self-absorbed that I don’t recognize my distorted self-awareness. But once I step back and become a viewer, the piece takes on a message of its own and tells me that my only flaw is self-criticism itself. -CLARA DUTTON
When I am making my sculpture I am at peace with myself. I become totally immersed in the work. I always work alone. I find others thoughts or talk distracts from the deep concentration and involvement that envelope me. Ideas grab me, just pop into my head. It could be a person, their mental or physical condition or something I hear on the news or see on the
street. Whatever it is I respond to it as an aspect of my own being which I know can almost always be generalized to other people’s being as well. Many people have or are experiencing something similar to what I am. If I make a piece of work that expresses my depression, I don’t assume everyone in the world is depressed, but a fair number. Many people have responded to my piece, “The Baby Sucking It’s Thumb.” I view thumb sucking as a child’s attempt to satisfy him/herself and feel more secure. This attempt to feel more secure captures the human wish to fend of fears and find a place of safety. When I am conceiving a piece I make a sketch on paper. When I am satisfied that the image represents what I want to say I build the piece out of clay. I used to fire the clay pieces in the large kiln. Now I make the molds directly from the clay model and then cast the piece in Bronze. I want people to understand the work so that I know it has expressed what I want it to express. Everything I do comes from a need to say something important. In my later work such as “Self Portrait 20 years old,” I feel the piece succeeds in expressing feeling of helplessness and sadness as well as any piece I have made. I also like the piece because I am pleased with the form. It is more abstract than some of my earlier work. I have moved into making pieces that are more abstract and less literal. My art always originates in my desire to express something that is powerful. I don’t look or search for a thing to express, it comes to me and I need to create it. -JERRY ATKINS JERRY ATKINS Self Portrait at 40 Bronze 12” x 14” x 7” firstname.lastname@example.org
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A SHOW OF HEADS
DEAN FLEMING http://www.deanfleming.com The Virgin Oil on panel 20” x 16” www.directart.org
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A SHOW OF HEADS
JENNIFER MONDFRANS Rosa Parks wax pastel and acrylic on canvas 18 x 24" email@example.com
I found a photo of Rosa Parkâ€™s mugshot from The smoking gun website, where they have a collection of historical mugshots. I was struck by her look of polite contempt and the way she held her number. Turns out her elegant fingers came from her work as a seamstress and no doubt made her beautiful suit. From research I discovered she was carefully chosen from many who wanted to volunteer. I think the reason she was chosen shows in her mugshot. From the purity of her white flower to the integrity shown plainly in her face, Rosa Parks exemplified the graceful spirit of courage that defined the African American struggle to defy the laws that prevented true freedom. - JENNIFER MONDFRANS 84 Direct Art / Volume 17
A SHOW OF HEADS CARL RAVEN Castilian Limestone 30" x 14" x 15" firstname.lastname@example.org
TED SOUTHERN Figurine Shelf, Original Plastic, ceramic 6" x 24" x 2" email@example.com
Figurine Heads (below) is a collection of vastly different representations of what is ostensibly the same subject: a human bust. The figurines depict west and east, male and female, strong and weak, ancient and modern, young and old. The Original Figurine Heads are the origins of an edition of sculpts; the heads are also cast in white, black, and clear plastic sets.
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DamnNation Watercolor 22” x 30”
Us and Our Other no.3 Mixed media on Paper 46” x 28” Untitled no. 4 Mixed media on paper 56” x 30”
Anastasia Wiltshire firstname.lastname@example.org 86 Direct Art / Volume 17
VOID SERIES, Graphite, charcoal and ink on paper
Photographed by Pictex Studios, Boston
Ryan H Maguire
The Protected Oil on canvas 36" x 36"
The Silenced Oil on canvas 36" x 36"
- Oil Paintress SATI
www.gallerysati.com Chakra Rainbow Exhibition coming in 2011 to the EVENT GALLERY 910ARTS www.910arts.com www.directart.org
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The Lie Acrylic on MDF 73â€? x 49â€?
A created image is an extension of the mind that tells a little white lie and reveals the big black truth. Reality is only what is in existence, yet dreams may conjure up a concise, clear consciousness that reveal past or prophetic events. This seemingly imaginary world of the mind existed in a moment, suspended while holding a secret. This unknown thought can be shared and some will believe.
Alan Siggers www.alansiggers.com 88 Direct Art / Volume 17
Abandoned Room With Zebra Acrylic and ink on canvas 30“ x 24”
Abandoned Room With Cheetah Acrylic and ink on canvas 20“ x 26”
Abandoned Room With Bird Acrylic and ink on canvas 22“ x 28”
My most recent painting series Abandoned Rooms juxtapose nature with abandoned man made structures. The empty, crumbling factories and homes, which are returning to nature, act as surreal landscapes that the animals inhabit.
www.michaelkecksart.com email@example.com www.directart.org
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Bodhi Ink and acrylic on paper 12" x 28"
Joy Oil 24” x 12”
Untitled 2 Bronze 20.5” x 11” x 9.5”
Untitled 1 Bronze 9” x 5” x 5”
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Acrylic on canvas 35” x 23.5“
Sea Turtle Acrylic on canvas 14.25“ x 30”
Three or four different colors are used along with the white. After the paint is prepared in the containers, the artist is blindfolded. Then, the containers are shuffled so as not to know the order of colors to be applied. As soon as the blindfold is on the artist concentrates on the application of the paint, where on the canvas to put it, when to switch the containers of paint, and the brush stroke. This requires a great amount mental energy. The next step is to remove the blindfold and observe what image can be seen. This may take some time. If no image is seen, the procedure is repeated until one is observed. After that, the image is then brought out and clarified using the same colors. The painting title is based on the particular image which has emerged. Black Swans Acrylic on canvas 38.4“ x 50.5”
Steven R Brownell firstname.lastname@example.org Bangkok, Thailand www.directart.org
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Misbehaving Glass & Leather Mosaic 40" x 20"
Game On Glass & Leather Mosaic 48" x 20"
Mary Chiodini Mosaicist Saint Louis, MO
www.saatchi-gallery.co.uk/yourgallery - under Julie A. Bilyeu
Hell Doesnâ€™t Want Them Anxiety Drawings by Julie Bilyeu - email@example.com Represented by Kaleid Gallery - 88 S. 4th St Downtown San Jose CA 95113 92 Direct Art / Volume 17
Wondering Oil on canvas 24" x 20"
Lili Yang graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2010. Yang has focused on representational oil paintings for several years. She has always seen her art as having a very strong autobiographical aspect; the subjects in her paintings maintain their original shapes and forms, however, the effect goes beyond reality to an exaggeration through the expressive power of color. Her series of doll paintings provides an excellent way of showing this. â€œMy work serves as a mirror of myself; in every brush stroke, I try to convey something important about my life, my experience, and my spirit.â€?
Lili Yang www.yanglili.com firstname.lastname@example.org
One way Oil on canvas 14" x 18"
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Acrobats Mixed media 12” x 12”
anna vranckx email@example.com http://web.me.com/anna.vranckx/Site 94 Direct Art / Volume 17
Abstract-Figurative 2.3 Oil on canvas 48” x 36” 2007
www.seevanminnen.com 96 Volume 17 / Direct Art
Christian Rex van Minnen
Possession Photographic transfer and acrylic on panel 2009
Kimberly Zsebe and Sergio G. Villamizar: Socio-political iconography
Published on Dec 14, 2012
Since 1997 Direct Art has been a leading alternative fine art magazine. The magazine features images and direct commentary from the best in...