Fear of the Dark

Photo: http://www.benvenom.com/mixedmedia.html
Copyright Ben Venom
I saw this guy on one of my favourite blogs, my love for you is a stampede of horses, a while back. Metal bands have some of the most whack but cool-in-a-kitschy-way art, and teaming that up with quilting is just too good. And of course, artist Ben Venom is from the dirty south, and his artwork is a commentary on Southern lifestyles and culture.
Which explains why I took a shine to the whole thing.

Precarious Age

A few weeks ago while I was down in Sydney, I stopped in to check out part of the 17th Biennale of Sydney running at the Museum of Contemporary Art. Although on limited time (admittedly, it was a cursory 45min sweep), I did come across one artist whose work I stood in front of, stupefied and close to drooling.

Glassy, 2006
Mixed media, acrylic and resin on wood panel
© Fred Tomaselli
Photo: James Cohan Gallery

Brooklyn artist Fred Tomaselli does some amazing stuff with collage and resin. Although I'm usually pretty skeptical about collage, as it brings back some ugly memories of cutting up pictures of JTT and various other 90's heart-throbs, Tomaselli's stuff is slick, psychedelic and comes across like an intricately detailed dream. However, web images don't really do his work justice, as the compulsive patterns and the spacey depth created by the resin only really translate up close and in person. Regardless, if it's his California upbringing--something he describes as having an "artificial, immersive, theme park reality"--that informs his work, then I'm taken. Because it looks super, super cool.

Big Raven 2008
Acrylic, photo collage and resin on wood panel © Fred Tomaselli
Photo: Erma Estwick Courtesy Courtesy James Cohan Gallery (New York)

The Biennale runs until the 1st of August, so there's still time to take a simulated acid trip just by looking closely at the Big Raven's eye(s).


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