BEHIND THE SCENES:
This week artist Abdelkader Benchamma is making a wall drawing in our stairwell. For his first U.S. museum presentation, Benchamma is creating an astronomical vortex titled “Representation of Dark Matter”. Comprised of a series of linear abstractions and nebulous, inkblot forms, the graphic large-scale drawing is a depiction of the complexity of the solar system and its nearly imperceptible dark matter.
On view as of April 10 | Evening Opening April 16, 6-8pm
Details on all our spring exhibitions are on drawingcenter.org.
#AbdelkaderBenchamma #walldrawing #solarsystem #darkmatter (at The Drawing Center)
he bent in closer “if you’re still bleeding then you’re one of the lucky ones. ” i’m heaving all this in through corrupted lungs stateless air, incontinental collateral damage he says “there’s no joy in being reckless” to hold it back - rationalise it out of my vocal chords when we’re chasing visions of our futures skating by alongside life projected on the side of buildings written about in lowbrow magazines melding our minds together and drawn out with words to each other like this
i’d rather rationalise the varying tones of your skin pin up each hue on a gallery wall draw out your fingers over mine within me watch your mouth rise and fall as i/you do watch it smile and laugh as you see my tiny little heart pushing flesh out on a mattress
i’d rather rationalise it later indulge the dysfunctional self explode the pigmented pink of me all around your smile an ignition of dna that felt so much more natural than it was in nature
(women are women they can’t stop it, can they, boys?) neurosexism is the finest of all sciences with all of these minds that are melded to it and faces within girls that you look for imprinted on the inside of my own womb it shouldn’t take you that much longer to find it
not sure why it took me 7 months to post this. but hey, thanks to spx and all of the artists who were willing to spend their time doing this. they were all super nice. before i knew it my sketchbook was getting passed around to a lot of talented people, some i just met and some i’ve admired for a long time. thx doodz. and i guess it should also be noted that matt, todd and i didn’t exhibit at Small Press Expo, just attended.
the summer of 2005, we exhibited Selections: Wall-to-Wall Drawings, an exhibit featuring works on all the surfaces
of our galleries by seven artists from The Drawing Center’s Viewing Program.
Rather than creating murals or treating the wall as a large canvas, the
artists explored the relationship between the function of these walls and their
approaches were taken to integrate the physical surface of the wall as part of
the conversation created by these drawings. On one of the walls, arist Avantika Bawa drew large abstract
shapes that hinted at the architecture and infrastructure of the building, echoing
the unseen forms hidden beneath the concrete. The building itself was
reinterpreted by Sun K. Kwak with flowing and dynamic lines made with masking tape that covered
the floor and the walls, suggesting an architectural nervous system. In
addition, elements of Mark Licari’s mythological world, with hybrids of animals, vegetable,s
and machinery, invaded the walls, the columns, and unlikely niches of the
gallery to surprise the audience. Artist Chris Sauter placed a telescope pointing
at cut out fragments on one of the walls, suggesting the presence of a
newly created cosmos inside the museum.
Mark Licari, Untitled (detail), 2005.
Installation view: Shoshana Dentz, Fence II #46, 2005.
Avantika Bawa, (un) fragmented spaces, 2005.
Sun K. Kwak, Drawing ON The Drawing Center, 2005.
Photo: Cathy Carver
Chris Sauter, Mind and Body, 2005. Telescope constructed
from gallery walls, drywall, screws, and glue. Dimensions variable, telescope
50 x 36 x 36 in. Photo: Cathy Carver
Lithuanian artist Ernest Zacharevic turns the corners of towns into a brilliant series of interactive murals. He first creates a setting mixing paint and real objects in an ordinary alley, then invites people to interact with this scene and takes pictures of their propositions. The goal is to guarantee the consistency between the setting and the participant to make the scene as lively as possible. Since Zacharevic was given the mission to embellish the Malay city of Penang, he settled there and spread his participative art through the run down streets of the city. His interactive murals have become a landmark in Malaysia. (cf. Street art community)
Bault is a graffiti artist based in Paris. He has developed over years a world where populate monsters, hybrid animals and grotesque characters half-human half-machine. The creatures that he draws are often deformed, amputated or unfinished. We met Bault at Streets Hotel where he has painted three rooms (TBC). Captured by his fantastic creatures, Artchipel invites the Artist to share with our audience his personal story and creation process. http://bault.tumblr.com/post/75713361469/streets-hotel-paris-iii-room-221-2014
Artchipel: Who is Bault? Tell us a bit about your educational background and your practice. Bault: I have studied in Avignon Fine Arts School and then Decorative Arts School in Strasbourg where I practiced exclusively videos, sounds and contemporary illustrations. I am currently a graphic designer and visual artist. I develop more and more my creative activity. It is a recent project that allows me to express my graphic experiment without limit. I am in a period of artistic turbulence witch is very challenging.
A: When did you start to paint or stick your characters on the street? How has the graffiti initially captured your attention? B: I started painting at an early age. I come from the southwest of France, near Toulouse, where I had my first direct approach to graffiti. Back then, I listened to a lot of hip-hop, while I was in an environment rather punk-rock-anarchist. All these subcultures have led me to paint on the street: hip-hop for the atmosphere, and punk-rock for the attitude.
I like to paint on the street because I like to paint with people, to choose walls, to push my limits, and to share something… When you paint a wall, there is the freedom of movement, the apprehension of space that is unique. It’s like going back to the ancient cave paintings. I’m a caveman with an iPhone.
A: Could you share with us your process and how did you come to develop your aesthetic? B: Sketches, scribbles and notes are the basis and the ingredients of my work. Find the right medium for the best expression is my recipe. I often work in terms of series and try to develop a consistent body of work. I also keep an important part for the hand improvisation and the automatic writing. Graffiti allows that: starting with an approximate mass of color and revealing gradually the line. I refuse to remain static in my mode of representation. I like to move between the very naive, abstract and realistic representation.
A: You like beautiful designs but have trouble drawing “cute” characters. What do you aim to convey through your art? B: First, I like to draw profusely and hope to communicate the pleasure of drawing. I also like to show that we can play with the modes of representation by mixing styles without being “cute”. The meaning of my illustrations is somehow obscure. There are often several readings but with the central themes: hybridization, biomechanics, body worship and ecology. That having been said, before finding the original and unexplored denotations, I try not to politicize my creations.
A: Why did you choose to place your art in the public space? Is graffiti and street art more susceptible to viral art in some way? B: I don’t paint in the public space by opportunism. It wasn’t the initial purpose, but it is true that the impact is immediate. People are very receptive to ephemeral works and to artists who give their time to offer / impose images. I like the idea to share something with the general public, that a painting can touch everyone of the society. And if my work make the viewer stop and think 10 seconds, that’s positive.
A: You had your first personal exhibition last year at Le Cabinet d’amateur. How do you feel about the movement of graffiti and street art into galleries? http://www.lecabinetdamateur.com/expositions/bault/ B: The world is changing and so is the graffiti movement. This is the “nebula” of the art market that, I admit, often makes me sick. One of the main causes is the lack of discernment. On the other hand, the galleries can reveal another facet of street artists and allows the public to rediscover it, to show new faces with original work. It helps artists to create new challenging projects.
A: Could you name 3 young artists to keep an eye on? B: Kouka (cf. previous posts), a street artist who is having a show at Taglialatella Gallery this month. He has painted 2 amazing warriors in Vitry. It’s one of my favorite French paintings of the year. Kashink, one of the few very active female artists in the French graffiti/street art scene, a very nice person. She paints huge four eyed characters, with thick lines and vivid colors. I like her style. And my friend Saint Oma. This year, with La galerie du jour agnès b, he has participated in the 8th contemporary art fair “Drawing Now Paris”. Champion!
A: What is your project for the coming year? B: Lot’s of exhibitions, big walls, a big ride in Latin America…
La Comédie (The Comedy) is a series of anamorphic murals created by French street artists Ella & Pitr in the city of Saint-Étienne to bring awareness to the worn out and abandoned buildings. Whimsical and playful, each piece in this public art series typically features a gigantic illustrated picture frame that appears to be a portal to another world that is more colorful and fantastical. By strategically placing people - who are volunteers living in the city - in these picture frames, the artists are able to create surreal images where it is difficult to distinguish between the second and third dimensions. The vibrancy of the images captured within these painted frames also stands in stark contrast to their dilapidated surroundings, thus bringing attention to the sorry states of the buildings. (source designtaxi)
Belgian street artist, Roa, is well-known for his giant black and white animal street art: “Painting walls is fascinating because they aren’t rigid or outlined; you are free to do whatever you want. Despite my appreciation for abandoned spaces; I do like painting in the city, too. I find it a completely refreshing experience to see and paint animals “in the wild”, but they also invade urban areas, just in a different way. The animal paintings are much more eye-catching on the streets through my modifications of their proportions. It must be strange for a four year old to see a pig on the street four times its natural size. In a way these paintings are inappropriate for the city and maybe even irrelevant; and that is exactly why I find that interesting. I like the needlessness and spontaneity of these kinds of acts and it goes without saying that I like animals, too.” (cf. Artist Playground) You can visit his Flickr or follow his Tumblr for more works.
Eime | on Tumblr (Portugal) - Alto da eira, Lisbon, Portugal (2012)
Eime is a graffiti and street-art artist from Porto, Portugal. He combines the stencil, the dripping and the realism to showcase strange characters and enigmatic portraits. The art that he builds is somehow dramatic, having a clear connection with the scenography and the theater. Please visit his behance or follow his Tumblr for more work.
Joshua Frankel is an animator, filmmaker and visual artist, grew up in the Hell’s Kitchen section of New York City in a building filled with musicians, actors and dancers. Originally trained in painting and drawing, Frankel began creating in 2001 animation and visual effects, mostly for TV commercials, and has been working in a variety of media, attempting to use the powers he has acquired in advertising for good, rather than evil. Frankel has collaborated with his wife, Eve Biddle, to create a series of enormous murals in New York City, Philadelphia and Indianapolis that implant a sense of boyish wonder onto massive walls in public spaces using subject matter ranging from jellyfish to rockets. Frankel’s work has shown in galleries and festivals around the world. Please visit artist’s website or follow his Tumblr for more work.