Posts tagged
with painting


Banksy Emerges in New York and Calls Attention to Imprisoned Turkish Artist Zehra Doğan

March 15, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Banksy (previously) has emerged this week on the streets of New York, creating at least two new artworks, his first pieces in the city since his ‘residency’ five years ago. In one large work spanning the length of the famed mural space at the corner of Houston Street and Bowery in Manhattan, tally marks form prison bars, symbolically counting the days of imprisonment for artist Zehra Doğan. The Turkish painter is currently serving a nearly three year prison sentence for the creation of a single painting. The mural is a collaboration between Banksy and street artist Borf.

Doğan, who also worked as a reporter for the now defunct Dicle news agency, created the painting in 2016 which depicts operations carried out by Turkish security forces against the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). The artwork, derived from a photograph, shows buildings reduced to rubble, plumes of smoke, and gathered military trucks, all part of a multi-year effort in Turkey’s southeastern towns and cities to clear out PKK militants. 

The aspect that the Mardin 2nd High Criminal Court deemed a crime are the Turkish flags that Doğan included, draped over the facades of some of the standing buildings, elements that also appear in the original photo.

As a result of her artistic rendering of the destruction in Mardin province Doğan may the only person in the world imprisoned for the act of painting. In Instagram posts about his depiction of Doğan’s sentencing, Banksy is encouraging people to repost her work and tag Turkey’s president, who is also active on Instagram. 

Zehra Doğan’s painting

The photograph that Doğan’s painting is based on

Update: A previous version of this article did not attribute Borf as a collaborator.



Art Illustration

New Mesmerizing Oil and Graphite Portraits That Peer Into the Subject’s Inner Mind by Miles Johnston

March 8, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

The Return

London-based illustrator Miles Johnston (previously) produces graphite drawings and oil paintings that examine the inner thoughts of his female subjects. His piece Withdraw literally presents a woman’s face retracting into her own head, her wide-eyed stare sinking deep into her skull. Another, Dualism, shows a woman crouched on top of a chasm in the earth, a similar fault line continuing through her body.

Johnston will exhibit these works and more at an upcoming solo at Last Rites Gallery, a gallery known for showcasing surreal and macabre works in New York City. His show will run from March 31 to April 21, 2018. You can see more of his drawings, paintings, and prints on his Instagram.

Process shot of Miles Johnston’s The Return







Young Children Accompanied by Wildlife Take a Stance Among Urban Decay in Paintings by Kevin Peterson

March 2, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Kevin Peterson (previously) continues to paint detailed tableaux of young children and animals juxtaposed against dystopian urban environments. Solo kids, accompanied only by wild allies of polar bears, lions, and raccoons, are at the center of each painting surrounded by abandoned, decaying buildings. Whereas his earlier paintings showed the children striding forward and exploring, more recently his young subjects have been paused, seeming to be in moments of reflection or defiance.

Peterson studied fine art alongside psychology in college and his varied career included a graduate degree in social work and a job as a corrections officer before he returned to his art practice in 2005. The artist’s interest in psychology and societal dynamics helps inform the intention behind his works, which Peterson describes as dealing “with isolation, loneliness and longing teamed with a level of optimistic hope. Issues of race and the division of wealth have arisen in my recent work. This work deals with the idea of rigid boundaries, the hopeful breakdown of such restrictions, as well as questions about the forces that orchestrate our behavior.”

Peterson is based in Houston, Texas and is represented by Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City, California. He shares his works in progress and finished paintings on Instagram.



Art Illustration

Pat Perry’s Intricate Portraits of People Intertwined with the Natural World

February 21, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Detroit-based artist Pat Perry (previously) renders intricate, fantastical portraits of humans and our relationship to the natural world—a dynamic that is sometimes harmonious, sometimes adversarial.  His multi-media drawings and paintings range from monochrome sketches handheld notebooks to multicolored murals on building walls. In all of his artwork, Perry balances finely worked details with sweeping gestural lines. The artist described his art in an interview with Communication Arts: “I want to make paintings that just softly whisper to you the thing that you forgot.” You can explore more of Perry’s illustrations, including a body of work based on a residency in Katmai National Park, on his website as well as on Instagram and Facebook.




Dina Brodsky Chronicles Her Travels in Detailed Miniature Landscape Paintings

February 9, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Painter Dina Brodsky (previously) records travel memories from long distance bicycling trips in small circular oil paintings. Brodsky’s style channels the heightened realism of 19th century landscape painters; whereas the historical paintings were created on enormous canvases that echoed the vast American landscape, Brodsky’s contemporary take condenses the visual impact into a token-sized work that fits in the palm of a hand. The artist describes the intention and scale of her work:

I like to think that the reason my works have gotten so tiny over the years is that painting itself is partially an act of meditation, of being able to hold something still enough in my mind that I can capture an image of it. As it becomes easier to slip into that meditative state, the object I need to concentrate on becomes smaller.

Paintings from this series are on view until March 4th in the show Cycling Guide to Lilliput at Pontone Gallery in London. Brodsky also shares her work on Instagram, and offers prints of select paintings in her Etsy shop. (via Create! Magazine)




A Series of Ordinary Humans and Creatures Trapped Within Their Pop Culture Depictions

February 7, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Netherlands-based artist Super A (previously here and here) has a new series of painting and sculpture that explores the truth behind fantasy, slicing through pop culture figures to examine the reality that lays at their core. Trapped features characters such as Tweety, Mickey Mouse, Snow White and even Ronald McDonald as their recognizable features unfurl like ribbons, revealing realistically formed birds, mice, and people caught inside.

The series intends to address our skewed perception of reality through easily digestible cartoons, demonstrating that there can be no objectivity when it comes to our daily view of the world. A certain lens is always employed, a myth disguises the harsh truths.

“Nowadays the most dominant myths we have embraced as an warm blanket of truth are liberty, property and individualism,” said Super A. “We tend to see these as absolute objective truths which suit the best interests of all humanity. But aren’t we just trapped within our cozy reality? And if it’s cozy… Should we even dare to break free?”

Super A has shown works from the series in a variety of exhibitions. The Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck paintings were recently shown at Vertical Gallery's group exhibition Portrait, Tweety is on view at Pow! Wow! Exploring the New Contemporary Art Movement curated by Thinkspace Gallery at the Honolulu Museum of Art, and Snow White and Pierrot will be shown at an upcoming exhibition with Galerie Droste.

“Pierrot,” 2018. 65 cm x 60 cm x 30 cm. Polyester, epoxy, resin, enamel paint.



Art Design

Color Palettes of Historic Paintings Subdivided with Algorithms by Dimitris Ladopoulos

January 25, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Athens-based motion graphics and visual designer Dimitris Ladopoulos uses a series of algorithms to subdivide his favorite works of art, breaking down the color compositions of centuries old paintings in the 3D animation software Houdini. With this process, Ladopoulos digitally observes the palette of Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn‘s Portrait of Johannes Wtenbogaert, in addition to examining the thousands of specific shades used to compose Rembrandt Peale‘s portrait of his daughter Rosalba.

The two digital compositions provide a contemporary view of historical paintings, showcasing how each might be analyzed as a designed object rather than a painted work. You can see more of Ladopoulos’s projects, like this earlier experiment with algorithm-based geometric patterns, on the designer’s website and Behance.