I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: sometimes, you just wanna look at beautiful flowers. Artist Carrie Schmitt creates vibrant compositions of blooms in a couple of visually-striking styles. Some of her paintings feature thick sculptural strokes, while others utilize expressive lines and haphazard drips. Both are lovely.
Carrie’s career in the arts came later in life. In 2009, she developed a life-threatening allergy to heat and couldn’t leave her home for months. She turned lemons into lemonade, however, and used the time indoors to pursue her dream of becoming a painter. Carrie explains, “Creating became my therapy and escape as I struggled with being homebound.”
Carrie’s work—originals and prints—are available in her Etsy shop.
For years, I’ve admired the bold, illustrative works of Gosia Herba. They instantly appeal to me because of the art history influence—specifically, Picasso and the Cubist movement. The bold pieces feature abstracted figures and multiple viewpoints, which is used to great effect: it provides us a lot of visual information and offers a full scope of who these characters are and the situations they’re in.
Gosia sells prints of her work in her Etsy shop!
Sometimes, a painting can take you somewhere exciting and new—a place where you’ve never been, much less imagined going. That’s how I felt when looking at the work of Tiel Seivl-Keevers, an Australian artist creating ethereal abstract images. With pockets of colors and organic marks, Tiel communicates places of of both splendor and despair, where the path ahead is unknown but there’s an awesome journey along the way.
“I build layers. I erase. I assemble. I alter, until I am satisfied that I have captured the mood and beauty that nature provides,” Tiel writes on her website. “Nature is repetitious and each season brings a memory; a visual, overlapped map that tells a story of new life and death. The destruction that rain and fire can bring, and the beauty that results. Each pod, seed, pebble and shell share a story.”
Tiel’s work is for sale on her website!
Recently, I featured the embroidery of Russian artist Lisa Smirnova. Her stitched portrait was mesmerizing, utilizing meticulous stitches that recalled an Impressionist style of painting. For her project Artist At Home, she worked in the same manner as part of a collaboration with fashion brand GO (by Olya Glagoleva).
Artist At Home is a “story about the creative process of an artist which has been told through the language of textile.” Cashmere, organic cotton, 80s denim jeans and vintage towels were used in the garment construction, and together they showcase a painter whose studio and home is a single place—”Where both home and work clothing mix together.”
Lisa hand embroidered each one-of-a-kind piece, creating abstract bursts of color on the shoulders, backs, and hems of chic-yet-cozy garments. Gorgeous! And a good DIY idea for my tired sweatshirts…
I’m a long time fan of Kate Pugsley’s paintings and illustrations. They feature a fantastic mix of styles, riding a fine line between realism, fantasy, and abstraction—it’s what makes her compositions so memorable. My favorite pieces involve figures in flattened landscapes where the trees and plants are stylized versions of palms and cacti. I find them both aesthetically pleasing and conceptually interesting—what will happen to these heroines?!
Kate sells prints and originals in her online shop. And fans of Instagram—don’t forget to give her IG a follow! It’s a favorite of mine.
Collage artists—need some inspiration? Here are some of Kate’s scraps:
“I have always loved flowers,” Hanna Nyman said on Instagram. “My grandmother was a florist and I remember visiting her in the flower shop as a child sitting on the counter just taking all the beauty and scent in!” This long-held adoration is the focus of her colorful work, which revolves around cut-paper blooms, crafted from solid colored paper and pages of text. She arranges them into aesthetically-pleasing compositions, sometimes adding a bird or butterfly in the mix.
There’s a lot more to see on her @backtopoetry Instagram, where nearly all of her feed is beautiful cut paper pieces. It’s a must-follow! (via All Things Paper)
Brooklyn-based artist Keri Oldham has recently opened her latest solo exhibition at Kirk Hopper Fine Art in Dallas, Texas. Entitled Labyrinth, her beautiful watercolor paintings are an allegorical series that’s inspired by the 1980 cult-classic film, as well as the ancient myth of the Minotaur.
The gallery describes the work in Keri’s show as combining “images of demons and warriors with tragic figures and victorious ones. With armored women at its center, these pieces spin a new story on Theseus entering the maze and confronting the beast within.” The alluring pieces fuse medieval beasts with fashion and fantasy, representing inner turmoil and desires the many of us feel—to find meaning and success in our adult lives.
I love both the concept of Labyrinth and the style of Keri’s at-times grotesque paintings. They’re created with pigment, graphite, and applied paper pulp, adding these brilliant textures to her dizzying colors and patterns.
If you’re in Dallas, check out her exhibition! It’s up until November 14 of this year.
Artist Jennifer Angus has created an installation that might gross you out, but it’s sure to fascinate you! Called In the Garden, she has wallpapered a hot pink-painted room with a gorgeous textured pattern that comprises 5,000 (!!) bugs. She collected the critters from southeast Asia and arranged them on the wall with their natural coloring intact—think iridescent greens, blues, and pearly mauves. The creatures form skull shapes and other decorative motifs and take over a room in the newly-renovated Renwick Gallery at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. (This space officially opens on November 13.)
Jennifer’s piece is one of nine artworks in Wonder, the inaugural exhibition of the Renwick Gallery. In addition to her bugs, the other artists will each occupy a different gallery in the building and turn their space into a room-size installation. I’m not far from its location in Washington, DC, so I’m going to pop in one weekend and check it out. Fun! (Via designboom)
Above: included in Coordinate Disregard
This past weekend, I went to the opening of Coordinate Disregard at the Terrault Contemporary in Baltimore. There, I saw the work Brooklyn-based fiber artist Alicia Scardetta, who I’ve been following on Instagram but hadn’t before seen her colorful weavings in person. And let me tell you, they are awesome. Intricate and jubilant, they combine a variety of weaving techniques and are “part tapestry, part friendship bracelet.”
To produce these meticulous pieces, Alicia uses frame tapestry looms and creates parameters for each weaving. Through this, she explores the possibilities and limitations of the “grid structure that forms woven textiles.” The process isn’t unlike illustration. In both fields, there are guidelines you must operate within, and part of the challenge is figuring out how to let your artistic voice shine.
If you’re local to Charm City, make sure you check out Coordinate Disregard. It’s up until September 26 and in addition to Alicia, includes work by: Randall Lear, Elissa Levy, Gabriel Luis Perez, and Curtis Miller. Plus, it’s curated by my pal Amy Boone-McCreesh, who is also an amazing artist!
Fun fact: I found Rebekah Miles’ work totally by chance. I was Googling someone of the same name, and her Instagram popped up as one of the top results. Thinking she was that someone else, I was pleasantly surprised when I saw a portrait of Reba McEntire and June Carter.
Rebekah creates faux book covers in the same gestural style as her portraits. Describing this on-going project, she writes:
I paint one-of-a-kind book jackets on specific artists, photographers, and some literature. The selected books are a reference to art history and the art of libraries. I choose an image to paint for a cover illustration based on qualities such as poignancy and visual graphics. If the book is not illustrated, I find an image that is complementary to its contents.
Rebekah also makes ceramics. They are, as she describes, “interpretations of images that appeal to a sense of place and beauty, such as an antique loteria set (Mexican bingo) from the 1800’s, a seed savers exchange catalogue, and a California native plant identification book.”