Posts tagged Nature
Complexity Through Minimal Expression: Interview with Yihong Hsu
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Yihong Hsu has an interesting multi-cultural background. She was born in Seoul, Korea as 3rd generation Chinese immigrants. She received American education since elementary school to college. She now lives permanently in Hong Kong.

 Yihong Hsu received her Bachelor of Art in Graphic Design at  Maryland Institute, College of Art, USA and later received her Master in Arts, Design Management, at International Design Advanced Studies Hongik University in Seoul, Korea.  

Her multi-national and cultural background lead her to have a successful career in design and branding industry for 18 years.

In 2018, she had a first break through as an artist, by being commissioned to do an art installation of 10 meter wide giant Panda and 7 meters tall Camellia tree - LOVE.FOUND. in Chongqing IFS mall (with co-artist Simone Carena of Italy). Ever since, she has found a new passion in contemporary art and have been painting for the past year. 

Artist Statement

Seed Series

The “Seed Series” was developed as a personal interpretation of nature and carries a deeper meaning of how that relates to us - humans. Flowers are portrayed as carriers of the seeds. All flowers carry female and male parts and thus self-reproductive. It is in all nature of things, a desire to reproduce and seeds are the beginning of that. My paintings are the exploration of seeds, seeds journey. Every seed will carry its own path, it may fall out sometime, it will one day be received, and it will grow.

Ball Series

Circles (balls) are very intriguing. They create movement and tension in the space and create odd spaces around them. They are so simple yet so powerful and I find myself using circles (balls) to interpret life, my own encounters, experiences, and emotion. Using the most minimal expression to interpret some complicated thoughts.

Interview by Alicia Puig

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How did you first become interested in art, and can you explain a bit of how it led you to the work you create today? 

I was a graphic designer for 18 years working in branding and advertising agencies. During those years, I always felt like there was an artist in every designer.

However, designers are very restricted, as they also have to be sensitive to the project's objectives, client's needs, market trends, etc. I was longing for freedom to express myself the way I wanted to and about things I was interested in. In 2018, I was lucky to be commissioned to do an art installation piece in Chongqing, China. A 10-meter long chrome finishing panda lying on top of Chongqing IFS shopping mall complex - named LOVE.FOUND. (co-artist Simone Carena) and a 7-meter tall metal-chrome camellia tree. During the project, which lasted one year, I did a lot of research on flowers and how to express them. I sketched a lot of camellias and ways to make it more interesting. It is during this time that I fell in love with flowers and nature and decided to quit my 18 years of career in advertising and start the journey of depicting flowers and nature. I have been painting ever since and find it very therapeutic and self-satisfying. 

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We love that some of your work is minimalist while other pieces have more complex layering and patterns. Can you tell us about what inspires you? 

It was a long train of thought and curiosity that led to these two very different types of paintings. I personally called them the "seed series" and "ball series." As I started to dig into and experimenting with different ways of expressing flowers, I became more curious about the anatomy of the flower. Something not everyone draws about when they draw beautiful outskirt of flowers. What I learned from the biological anatomy diagrams of flowers was that all flowers carry female and male parts and what I thought were the seeds of flowers were only pollens and that the seeds are carried deep inside the ovary and ovule. This was very intriguingand interesting to me, and it inspired me to start painting flowers always emphasizing on the seeds that they carry. I also started to imagine them all around us in nature, how they strive to survive and get transferred to other flowers, and so on. To me, it somehow reflects human life and what we go through in life. For the "ball series," it began when I started to draw a lot of circles for the "seed series." It was very fun and interesting to me how circles affect the space around it. It gives a sense of motion even in a still 2-dimensional space. It is a perfect round-edge shape but provides oddness. I was inspired to just use circles (balls) and the most minimal expression to depict this tension. When I want to tell a very complicated story and put a title to the "ball series" pieces, it makes perfect sense!

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What is your process like? Do you do a lot of sketching or make work more intuitively? 

I do a few sketches before just to make sure what is already in my head looks okay on flat surface. 

Describe your current studio or creative space. What is most important about it or one thing that you definitely need in your work area?

My creative space is an extra room at my place that I transformed into my workspace. There is no most important "thing" for me. I just need absolute silence and natural sunlight. I love my big window. 

What is your favorite thing about being an artist? That I can transform my thoughts and feelings into art. I don't need to organize my thoughts into PowerPoint slides and excel sheets and use fancy words to write about it. I just draw them. I feel free!

Jessica Tenbusch
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Jessica Tenbusch is inspired by the animal and plant species that live near humans. She explores the relationships between species and how they shaped her experience as a human animal. Her work is an observation on our role as ecosystem builders and destroyers. These works are fragments of our daily environment, showing just how close nature is in our everyday lives, embedded in our homes and neighborhoods. In her childhood, she shared her home with a multitude of other animals and hundreds of houseplants. Outside was always inside.

She loves to work in the spaces between two-dimensional and three-dimensional representation and uses color pencil, ink, acrylic paint, wood, metal, and found natural and man-made materials to create sculpture and works on paper.

Jessica received her BFA in 2011 and MFA in 2014 from Eastern Michigan University where she concentrated in metalsmithing and drawing. In addition to exhibiting her work nationally, she is active in the local arts community curating shows and coordinating events. She lives and works in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Her practice is located within Ypsi Alloy Studios, a 3D arts studio she co-owns and runs with two other local artists.

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Chloe Hedden
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Chloe was born and raised in Utah's wild red desert, but has had the great fortune to call many amazing places around the world her home. A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, she is as comfortable painting large oils as she is illustrating children’s books. In 2007, She won an International Creativity award in the category of commercial illustration for “The Peaceful Warrior.” Her first children’s book, “The Illuminated Desert,” written by Terry Tempest Williams and published by the Canyonlands Natural History Association in 2008, won The Mountains and Plains Bookseller’s Award for Best Children’s Book. She currently resides in Southern Utah and makes art full time.

Statement

As an artist, Chloe looks for the unseen patterns and hidden narratives that reveal the magnificence in all things.  Robert Henri said, "Paint the spirit of the bird rather than its feathers."  There is a still point in every moment and to capture this essential luminescence is to acknowledge the ancient wisdom in all things. She makes use of archetypes from the cultural and mystical history that connects all humans and all life forms.  Joseph Campbell said that artists are the shamans of our time.  She believes that we have the ability as well as the obligation to find and share truth and offer direction to the greater community.  It is with this inspiration that She delves into the riches of the collective unconscious and the imagery and symbolism of her dreams to draw out something bigger than herself to share with the world.

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Erin Holscher Almazan
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Erin Holscher Almazan is an Associate Professor of Printmaking and Drawing at the University of Dayton in Dayton, OH.  Erin is a native of North Dakota. She received her BFA in Fine Arts from Minnesota State University Moorhead and her MFA in Printmaking from Rochester Institute of Technology, in Rochester, New York. She has completed two printmaking residencies at the Frans Masereel Centrum in Kasterlee, Belgium. Erin’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has been included in exhibitions in connection with the Southern Graphics Printmaking Council and the Mid-America Print Council. Erin is also an active member of the Dayton art and printmaking community.  She resides in Dayton with her husband and two sons. 

Statement

My work is a direct and emotional response to identity; I am continually fascinated and perplexed by my roles and relationships. Through my work, I reflect on a malleable identity shaped not only by our own shifting environments, but also by nature, nurture, inheritance, and history. I draw, print and paint to fluidly move with and investigate form and edge and to achieve a range of gestural lines and marks. I strive to communicate acceptance, ambivalence, struggle, empathy, and connectivity, and to convey the duality embedded within our identity.

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Hidden Nature: Interview with Darko Vuckovic
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Talent is a good advantage, but it brings us to our goal only if nurtured through constant work.

Vuckovic was born in Podgorica, Montenegro and graduated from Faculty of Fine Arts in Cetinje in 2001, in the class of professor Dragan Karadzic, painting department.

From 1999 to 2000, he attended L’ecole Superrieure d’Art du Grenoble, France, where he started to experiment in computer-generated imagery, photography and experimental sound.

In 2012, he completed specialized studies, painting department, at the Faculty of Fine Arts in Belgrade, in the class of professor Zoran Vukovic. He has been a member of ULUCG (Association of visual artists of Montenegro) since 2002.

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The Heraldry of Nature (Imprints and Traces)

Every shape in the visible nature, the smallest as well as the biggest, is revealed as harmony. 

The Māori from Polynesia had the word “mana” for expressing the unity of things, the strong feeling that life is a unity in which not only gods, people and all living things partake, but also things that to us seem dead. “Mana” thus represents an immediate experience of the “sacred force that permeates life”. All of their art is filled with spirals as visual displays of the force. They were engraved into wood and stone, painted, or even tattooed on the body. One can find identical spiral motives in many other parts of the world, some originating from prehistoric times.

In nature we find the spiral movement in the structure of the DNA molecule, as well as in the spiral galaxies. The “murmur” of the cosmos is expressed through shape, just as fine sand placed on a string instrument makes precise geometric shapes when one plays a tone.

György Doczi, a Hungarian architect from the early 20th century, discovered the same mathematical laws at the basis of architecture, the elements of landscape, the anatomy of humans, animals and plants, the tone scale, the rhythm in poetry, prompting him to introduce the concept of a dynergic pattern“.

The displayed works have a common thread. They represent different imprints of the universal energy flow, which is visible just partly. This energy weaves tirelessly behind the curtain of the material world, maintaining it and driving it. The idea once obsessed J. W. Goethe (Essay on the plant), and later Rudolf Steiner when he speaks about the active spiritual reality, deeming it the cause of what we perceive with our outer senses. The wide field of his work and his views had a profound impact on art: the works of Kandinsky, and later Joseph Beuys, among others.

Occasionally, the hidden, dynamical and changeable nature finds its artistic expression and displays itself in physical form. That is why I consider myself only as a formal author of these works.

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When and how were you first introduced to working with ceramics?

I started doing ceramics about ten years ago. Considering I received a degree in painting, the main techniques of my artistic expression were drawing, painting, photo collages. A set of circumstance led to my sharing a studio with some sculptors. This was a decisive factor for my gradual shift to ceramics and getting to know its secrets. Ceramics enabled me to add a third dimension to the visual images I created. I was and still am fascinated by the possibilities it offers, which are practically inexhaustible.

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What inspires your work?

Inspiration is something that is in my case spontaneous, which arrives the moment I start communicating with the material, in this case with clay.

There are certain conditions that have a positive effect on achieving a required state of sensitivity when creativity can be expressed in the proper way.

Frequent trips to nature contribute to this state. The rhythms of nature and its changes are somewhat similar to the rhythms of the forms I create. My forms are organic and changeable, almost natural.

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What is your process like when you start a new sculpture?

In most cases, I don’t have a clear idea and plan about what I wish to accomplish because I want to leave open the possibility of a surprise.

I allow the forms to change by their own inner rhythm and impulse. This is probably the main reasons why the technique has been holding my interest for so long. Later, after the first round of baking clay, some additional effects are made with texture and glaze, making it even more interesting. Sculptures are often baked multiple times in a row until the desired effect is achieved.

Below is the link for my short film on clay and an ancient method of sculpture making. The film was screened at the AVI Fest - Short Film Festival 2017, where it won the first prize.

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Who are some artists that inspire you?

It used to be Hieronymus Bosch and Flemish painters. Afterward, surrealists like Max Ernst, the metaphysical painter Giorgio de Chirico, but also M.C. Escher.

As for sculptures, I am most fascinated by the sculptures by Joan Miro and some works by Joseph Beuys.

These are the artists whose work always leaves an impression on me.

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What has been the most challenging aspect of your career thus far? How did you overcome it?

The greatest challenge is persisting in doing what one loves. It isn’t always easy. It means not compromising what one considers truly worthy of doing. Like the moment I left my steady office job as a graphic designer so I would have more time for my artwork. It often means entering a zone of economic instability. These decisions bring many questions, doubts, and dwellings, and one needs to learn how to cope with that. It becomes easier as time goes by.

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What would you say your greatest strength is as an artist?

For me, art is something that gives meaning even at times when we cannot find it in our surrounding, in the outer world. The fact itself is encouraging and gives strength and motivation. For me, that is enough.

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Do you have a piece of advice you have received that you would like to share with our readers?

There is good advice in the tale about Aladdin. It says that if you rub the lamp long enough, a genie will appear. The lamp represents us and our unnurtured talents. This means that if we are persistent and focused, results are inevitable. Talent is a good advantage, but it brings us to our goal only if nurtured through constant work.

Adam Hall

As a visual artist, Adam Hall began working mostly with charcoals and oils. Self taught, he attempts to mix traditional style with contemporary. Using palette knifes and layering techniques he creates a true richness and depth to his work. Adam believes every painting is his next opportunity in truly expressing his vision and vibe through landscape. “Art is such a powerful tool and I strive to use it in the most positive way I know how.” While his passion for art began growing up in Wellsburg, West Virginia, his professional artistic career began nearly a decade ago in Nashville. Adam quickly became involved with a local interior design firm whose clientele took great interest and demand for his art. His work is now featured in several galleries throughout the southeast United States. Adam Hall proudly resides in Nashville, TN, with his wife Thais. Adam spends most of his time in his studio in Nashville and continues to discover a fulfilling purpose through art.

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/adamhallart/

FB page: https://www.facebook.com/adamhallart/

Jihyun Ra
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Artist Statement

Most of my artwork subjects (and my favorite artwork subjects) are artifacts: tree trunks, rocky mountains, and elephants, all things with rough texture. So I thought I just liked texture, simple. But the more I painted, the more I recognized the meaning of what I wanted to capture in my artwork. I discovered I was painting the Earth. The Earth I think is the most essential material of my nostalgic childhood past, the present, and the future.

When I was young, the earth was my toy and the medium of my creations like dollhouses and pottery. While others saw just rocks and dirt, I saw the wonderful possibilities to explore. The earth had so much texture and endless amounts of color. I get that same childhood delight when I’m getting ready to paint, specifically when I pour and mix colors and put lace on the canvas. It is such a joyful experience even though it may look uninteresting. It gives me that warm feeling that I have added the needed bedrock for my painting.

In the present, it is the world we live in. Life can get hard and can become a real struggle, but from that emerges a kind of harmony. For the past eight years, I’ve made the US my home and have noted the wide range of lifestyles, cultures, religions, and ethnicities. It really is a multicultural country yet there exists a glimpse of harmonious balance. This harmony is not born from taking the easy path. Expressing that through painting of objects assembled with quilt-like patches of patterned fabric is also not easy and requires a lot patience and perseverance.

www.rajihyun.com

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Madison Parker
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In 2013, Madison Parker or “MADPICS", graduated from the Art Academy University with a BFA in Photography. Her college years in San Francisco set the trajectory for her to move to LA to pursue the entertainment industry, an almost gravitational pull for any photographer. There she interned and assisted for photographer, Art Streiber. Learning the ins and outs of the industry, she decided to relocate to San Diego, where she currently works and resides.

While my diploma may be camera-centric, my heart is anything but. I revel in the wonder of exploring all mediums as ways to capture the feelings, ideas, people, and moments that make up life. I embrace creative challenges, encouraging change. The world around me, something wild yet comforting to behold... something you really need to open your eyes to. I've been lucky enough to grow up in an environment that has inspired me throughout life to try and capture everything I find enticing- whether it be the way sunlight leaks through a window, the shapes of shadows, or what lurks between what we can and cannot see.

Explorations of the Natural World by Claire Elliott
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My paintings are centered around explorations of the natural world, with a particular focus on how we catalog, categorize and venerate natural objects. Much of my work is drawn from greenhouses, a space where plants are isolated and bent to human will for our enjoyment.

These types of plants hold a cultural value, we choose to elevate them by letting them into our homes, and preserve and archive them in conservatories. The arrangement of the flora in these spaces reveals narratives ranging from botany to colonialism to romance. Using plants as a vehicle for abstraction, I am fascinated by the disconnect between a painted surface and the artist’s vision. Probing the medium’s capabilities, I find inspiration in the result of trying and failing to capture something, while recognizing the heights and limits of the paint.

www.claireelliott.com

Holly MacKinnon

Holly MacKinnon is an artist based out of Montreal, Canada.  She received her BFA from NSCAD University in 2015. In 2014, she was awarded the Art In Schools Scholarship in Stellenbosch, South Africa, where she spent a semester interning for a community art program and painting.  Since then, she has been developing her body of work, experimenting with different subject matter and exploring themes such as the relationship between humans and nature.  Her work has been shown in exhibitions and publications in Canada and the UK.  She recently completed an artist residency in Iceland.

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Statement

Her work is mostly oil paintings of figures within dreamlike landscapes and spaces. Nature is an escape from reality and provides an intense loneliness that the artist enjoys. These experiences in nature bring about a certain self-reflection. Most of the figures she paints in these scenes look lost, disturbed and lonely even when they are not alone. They seem to have wandered into the woods for want of a peaceful place.  There are many ideas at play: childhood, mental and emotional (in)stability, and the relationship between humans and nature.

A still moment that seems uneventful is full of conflicting energy: calm landscape, dark ominous sky, disturbed expressions – the painting pulls us in and out of joy and despair.  In these woods, experiences are not shared: they are individual and deeply personal and differ greatly from one figure to the next – what transpires in the mind of our neighbour we do not know.    



Nick Pedersen

Nick Pedersen is a photo-based digital artist and illustrator whose work focuses on environmental issues and political activism. He holds a BFA degree in Photography, as well as an MFA degree in Digital Imaging from Pratt Institute in New York, where he graduated with distinction. He has shown artwork in galleries across the country and internationally, recently including the Los Angeles Center for Digital Art, the Main Line Art Center, Paradigm Gallery, and Arch Enemy Arts. He has published two artist books featuring his long-term personal projects Sumeru and Ultima. His work has been featured in numerous publications such as After Capture, Beautiful Decay, Juxtapoz, Hi-Fructose, and Empty Kingdom. In the past few years he also has completed Artist Residencies at the Banff Center in Alberta, Canada and the Gullkistan Creative Residency in Iceland.

Statement


“My artwork is primarily inspired by my experience with nature and environmentalism. It is specifically motivated by my concern for the future due to the effects of climate change, sea level rise, deforestation and many other environmental impacts humans have had on the planet. My goal with these projects is to visually depict this modern conflict between the natural world and the manmade world in interesting and provocative ways, to create elaborate, photorealistic images that show a striking contrast between utopian and dystopian visions of the world. I portray this as an epic struggle and in my work these forces clash in theatrical, post-apocalyptic battlegrounds.”



Podcast Episode: Art as Ritual, Sourcing Materials from Nature and Artist Residencies with Gillian King

Join us for a special episode of Art and Cocktails Podcast with artist Gillian King as she shares her story, as well as the evolution of her creative process. Gillian talks about how she started using plants and natural materials in her abstract paintings, her experiences in international artist residencies and more.

Gillian King is a painter and art educator from Winnipeg, Manitoba and MFA Graduate from the University of Ottawa. 

Art as a Celebration: Podcast Interview with Alonsa Guevara

On this episode, join us for a fun and inspiring conversation with artist Alonsa Guevara. Alonsa shares her journey of growing up in Chile, moving to New York and developing her career as a brilliant painter.

Alonsa and Kat talk about inspiration, overcoming challenges, making money doing what you love and showing up for yourself as an artist. Alonsa's breathtaking paintings, personal story, hard working spirit and sunny personality will be sure to inspire you.

Alonsa Guevara is a Brooklyn based artist. She was born in Rancagua, Chile. Her paintings blur the lines between fantasy and reality while celebrating the connection between humankind and nature. A big part of her inspiration derives from her childhood spent living in the Ecuadorian rainforest with her family, growing up surrounded by tropical landscapes and a diverse wildlife.

Alonsa received her BFA from the Pontific Catholic University of Chile in 2009 and moved to New York in 2011. She was awarded the Elizabeth Greenshields Grant in 2013 while being at the MFA Program of the New York Academy of Art, and after graduating she was granted the Academy's Fellowship award 2015.

Alonsa's work:

https://www.alonsaguevara.com/

Anna Zorina Gallery:

http://annazorinagallery.com/exhibitions/

New York Academy of Art:

https://nyaa.edu/

Shira Sela
“I am a painter & illustrator living and working in Montreal, Canada.

My work explores notions of nostalgia, escapism, memory and childhood.

My paintings were featured on television, books, magazines & album covers, and exhibited in Galleries in North America, Australia and Europe.”
— Shira Sela

 

 

Brooke Sauer

Regardless of what medium I employ, my work celebrates my love and awe of nature. In my newest series of cyanotypes I combine my background in painting with my love of photography and botany as I explore a sense of place and observe how native and non native species of flora and fauna in various environments co-exist with one another. In a large collection of collages entitled, In Search of Treasure, I explore our human relationship to landscape using mineral specimens as terrain to be investigated, traversed, enjoyed, and to inspire feelings of awe through surrealist moments that encourage the viewer to derive their own narrative, and place themselves in the tiny landscape that they see before them.

I have exhibited with spaces such as LA Louver, the UCLA Hammer museum, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, and the Los Angeles Freewaves Festival. I have been published in print and online in a variety of publications. Previously working as part of the collaborative duo, B&T, for over a decade, I have returned to my solo practice in painting, printmaking, photography, and collage. Thank you for taking the time to view my work.

www.brookesauer.com