Allied Member, ASID
May 16, 2013
I have always admired the work of Loren Calaway, as one sees the pieces and immediately thinks of how they relate into one’s own life. Except for the the fact that they are so little.
I hope you enjoy today’s post! Love, Jamie
Loren Calaway`s wood-and-mixed-media works effectively blur the line between the decorative arts and sculpture.
Each piece brings together an acrylic landscape and something akin to a shelf, desk or cabinet, but the scale of the furniture is small and its capacity for function nonexistent. The pieces only give an illusion of assisting
in the travails of office or studio.
The illusion is, however, strong enough to keep one from assuming the exquisite uselessness of sculpture. All the paraphernalia–little drawings, name plates, lead weights–conspire to create a context hard to disassociate
from the workaday world.
We know the context so well that it is almost impossible not to imagine a function
Some viewers will conjure a race of Lilliputians whose work stations have been abandoned .
The point here has more to do with how certain forms give rise to certain expectations that are at once courted and frustrated. The strength of the art lies in its capacity to maintain that tension.
May 14, 2013
Memphis Style is so much a part of not only an artistic expression, but it went as far as influencing interior design. I have recently become aware of Peter Shire’s work and thought it would be great to introduce you to him and his work.
Enjoy this post and have a great day! Love, Jamie
Since the 1970’s, Peter Shire has been working at an intersection. Where craft, fine art, and industrial design collide, he has built his career, drawing freely from each area without taking any of it too seriously. He has had forays into architecture, furniture,
and fashion, but he keeps returning to ceramics.
In 1974 Shire made the two pieces he considers to be the first mature work of his career in clay. Auffen Gile and Gile Kilns were Shire’s sculptural, geometric interpretation of the traditional teapot, complete with sun-bleached pastel glazes, uncanny angles,
and a jumbled collage of parts. Influenced by Bauhaus aesthetics, Shire sought to make a piece that meshed all this together. In his first teapots, he rolled these elements into one and found a form that he has continued to reinvent throughout his career.
Shire’s early teapots were also significant because they attracted the eye of Ettore Sottsass, one of the founders of Memphis, an international design movement that came out of Italy during the 1980’s. Sottsass found Shire’s teapots “fresh, witty, and full of
information for the future”, and the members of Memphis agreed. The group, which sought to revitalize design by rejecting conventional standards in favor of a bold, colorful, novel approach to product design, invited Shire to Milan to work with them.
This lead to a series of projects that toyed with the intersections of industrial design and fine art, and gave Shire the opportunity to work in glass, metal and other new mediums.
May 9, 2013
Al Held (1928-2005) was one of the last and best of the big-impact abstract painters to emerge from the postwar era.
From 1961 to ’67, a transitional period during which Held based compositions on simple, geometric shapes and, more remarkably, letters of the Roman alphabet.
The Yellow X (1965), he anticipated his own future. Made on two conjoined canvases measuring 8 ½ by 12 feet over all, its surface is almost entirely given over to bright yellow, acrylic paint —
Differently colored triangles intruding on each of the four sides define the image as the middle of a huge, slightly irregular X, which seems to be tilting forward in space. The inserts are divided into strips of contrasting color that suggest the depth of the sides of the X, as if it had been cut from a giant, six-inch thick slab. In this respect it prefigures the paintings of Mr. Held’s last three decades: enormous, breathtaking pictures of impossibly complicated structures made from straight and curved, richly colorful girders that implicitly expand into cosmic distances.
May 7, 2013
Lately at several auctions I have been attending, I have seen the work of Ettore Zaccari. I found his pieces so interesting, kind of like a Buggati-esqe but on a heavier scale. I hope you enjoy this post and seeing his work. Have a great day! Love, Jamie
Ettore Zaccari (Cesena 1877 – Milan 1922), owned an art furniture workshop in Milan. A typical example of his furnishings, are with characteristic art deco styling.
His works are usually made of dark, polished wood. They resemble period furniture, mostly from the Renaissance, but are also similar to the most current international contemporary works, such as the pieces of the French artist Maurice Dufrène,
as evidenced by the thick and lively decorative carving, often gilded or painted.
May 2, 2013
I fell in love with the work of Johanna Grawunder, an amazing multidisciplinary designer, architect and creator of ingenious light art. Grawunder will be known to use thin layers of material to construct large sculptural forms which have then been punctuated with either LED, halogen and fluorescent lighting-a recurring theme of her work.
Her work demonstrates the minimal and abstract aspects of the Milan-and san Francisco-based designer’s work, plays on her observations of the big skies, rolling hills and endless fields that frame the vast texan plain. The contrasting phenomena of American minimalism
and industrial innovation that has arisen from such a landscape.
Grawunder worked with Ettore Sottsass and feels her dual outputs as an architect and designer are more intertwined than ever for this collection. The pieces are architectural in scale, form and material and hone in on a certain modernist celebration of geometry and right angles.
April 30, 2013
I love writing about art as you know, and what I find most fascinating is always the artists raison d’etre! Richard Nonas doesn’t disappoint. His story is compelling on a humanitarian level and his artwork is great! I hope you enjoy this post!
Richard Nonas turned to sculpture at the age of thirty, after abandoning a budding career in anthropology. Fieldwork in Mexico, Canada, and the American Southwest had left him deeply troubled about some of the methodologies
used in ethnographic studies, and he also found it difficult to engage in “activity structured to end in conclusion.” But his anthropological work was a crucial early influence on his sculptural practice, fostering a deep curiosity about how
experience shapes our perception of space. After two years in Mexico observing the Papago tribe, he began to wonder about “the subtle difference in how people perceive reality. The way those Indians, in a complete desert environment,
felt spatial changes was very sensitive. To me, the desert was undifferentiated, but for them its spaces were like a series of familiar rooms.”
Nonas uses his experience as an ethnologist in his creative process: he searches to understand the complexity of the world that surrounds him.
Nonas is a sculptor of space, inventing a new vocabulary for each work of art; the work is minimalist, composed of geometric forms, in wood or metal, that he arranges in the space. It is a work of “combinations”;
the artist makes complex relationships with these elements, creating tension between them.
His sculptures use an abstract language that demand a new reading of the space with each viewing.
April 26, 2013
Today’s post is about a fabulous photographer and one who has shaped the way we see photography. I hope you enjoy this post!
Have a great day! Love, Jamie
James Welling has been questioning the norms of representation since the 1970s. His work centers on an exploration of photography, shuffling the elemental components of the medium to produce a distinctly uncompromising body of work.
Welling is also intensely interested in cultural and personal ideas of memory in his work. In opening up the medium of photography for experimentation, James Welling’s practice has influenced an entire generation of artists and photographers.
In spite of his six-foot-plus height, you might easily overlook James Welling in a crowded room. With his shaggy gray hair and tortoiseshell glasses, he looks every bit the UCLA tenured professor that he is. James Welling has played a seminal role over the last two decades in redefining the way we look at art.
Welling is among a handful of artists who have brought photography from the outer edges, where it lived as a kind of happy stepchild, to the center of the contemporary dialogue.
Remarkably, Welling consistently produces 180-degree changes throughout his oeuvre. His images range from impromptu studio shots of drapery to tabletop landscapes of aluminum foil, from pure geometric abstractions to straight-on images of trains. Just as radically, while most photographers work in a single format, Welling has moved assuredly through formats and processes—from Polaroid to 6×7, from black-and-white 35mm to color photograms. Throughout, his work exhibits a formal precision and clarity that is nothing short of breathtaking.
April 25, 2013
Newson’s career as arguably the most influential industrial designer of his generation and the leading exponent of the so-called design-art movement may stand as much on the quasi-moral power of design to affirm the social virtues of wit, proportion, elegance and simplicity, as on his obsession with futuristic forms and modernist aesthetics. Not that he has any overt agenda as a design evangelist. His motivation, apart from the business of it all, is the spirit of personal discovery, not civic edification. Each project is a fresh encounter with the material world.
I hope you enjoy this post! he is amazing! Love, Jamie
When Newson was a child and first began to exhibit the obsessive tendencies that characterize most great designers, he was entranced by the space-age utopia of the Jetsons, the early-1960s television cartoon
about a family who zipped around in personal aerocars. Modernism and the idea of the future were synonymous with the romance of space travel and the exotic materials and processes of space technology.
Newson’s streamlined aesthetic was influenced by his Jetsonian vision of the future, a future that didn’t pan out and left him, years later, conceding ruefully that “the future isn’t futuristic anymore.”
But in some ways the shapes of that world live on in Newson’s work, much of which reflects his irritation with the seemingly inexhaustible supply of badly designed products. Asked what bugged him most.
“Ninety-nine percent of all cars,” he said. “Ninety-nine percent of all sneakers. Ninety-nine percent of all cellphones. Ninety-nine percent of all door handles.”
As a practical matter it’s easier to list what Marc Newson hasn’t designed than what he has. “I know he hasn’t designed a washing machine or a bra,” said his press director, Patsy Youngstein.
The has-designed ledger includes tables, chairs, lights, watches, mirrors and faucets. Also necklaces, luggage, pans, sunglasses and, of course, Newson’s remedies for the headache of most door handles, sneakers, cellphones and cars.
His O21C concept car for Ford was named for its orange Pantone color number. His one-off Kelvin40 personal jet — as Jetsonian as anything he has ever done — was commissioned by the Fondation Cartier in Paris.
He has designed bicycles, boats, snowboarding jumpsuits and jet packs. He once did an interior of the Lever House restaurant in New York, now closed. A recording studio in Tokyo. The shoe boutique in Azzedine Alaïa’s Paris store.
While he mostly goes from project to project for a broad array of companies, he has had a steady gig for the last five years as the creative director of Qantas Airways, where he completed his biggest project,
designing everything from cabin lighting and seats to coffee cups and cutlery for the airline’s fleet of A380 Airbus jets.
April 24, 2013
Today’s post is another artist whose work I have just become familiar with, that commands price points in the hundreds of thousands. I have always been a staunch supporter of abstract and am finding myself in a conundrum wondering why?
I get the 1960’s and the movement to unravel figurative painting, and Kandinsky’s answer to get rid of all the ornamentation, and bring forms to their organic sense. But I do not understand the movement in the 80’s? I am enjoying taking this
converse approach to brining you this type of art. It is an interesting
position in thinking to defend the costs of these works and their representation of societies interests.
I hope you enjoy this post! Have a great day! Love, Jamie
Wool is best known for his paintings of large, black, stenciled letters on white canvases. However, Wool possesses a wide range of style- using a combined array of painterly techniques, including spray paint, silkscreen, and hand painting. Wool provides tension between painting and erasing, gesture and removal, depth and flatness.
In his abstract paintings draws lines on the canvas with a spray gun and then, directly after, wipes them out again with a rag drenched in solvent to give a new picture in which clear lines have to stand their own against smeared surfaces.
Writing in 2000, in The New York Times Ken Johnson highlighted Wool’s response to an observation made on the street as significant, “in the 1980s, Christopher Wool was doing a Neo-Pop sort of painting using commercial rollers to apply decorative patterns to white panels. One day he saw a new white truck violated by the spray-painted words ‘sex’ and ‘luv.’ Mr. Wool made his own painting using those words and went on to make paintings with big, black stenciled letters saying things like ‘Run Dog Run’ or ‘Sell the House, Sell the Car, Sell the Kids.’ The paintings captured the scary, euphoric mood of a high-flying period not unlike our own.”
April 23, 2013
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I have always loved the work of Bruno Romeda, in fact I used a pair of stools of his in a project of mine that is on my website, called Rowayton. They are in the living room if you would like to see them in a
real setting. his work has come up for action lately and it interested me in his popualrity. enjoy this post,
For many years, Bruno Romeda, who was born in Italy, has focused on the most simple, absolute geometric shapes – the square, the circle, and the triangle. From time to time, he will undertake variations on
his chosen repertory of shapes – a circle warps into an ellipse or is truncated to an arc; a square is stretched out into a long rectangle. By starting with elemental shapes and giving form to each individual work,
it is the directness with which he works, and yet with infinite subtlety, that gives his sculpture such authority and at the same time makes it so seductive.
His sculpture has been described not as a volume, around which one might walk, but rather as a “threshold,” to both that which the eye can perceive — the far horizon — as well as to the void, the unknown.
Illusion is the basis of Romeda’s sculptural psychology. His environmental sculpture, placed outdoors, interact with the landscape by framing and articulating space.