Your eyes and ears on the world of art and culture. We remind you that 16 years of back issues of eMusings can be found on our archives page.
A group of young Washington D.C-area artists is attracting attention for their innovative responses to contemporary life. One of the most interesting is Jamea Richmond-Edwards whose colorful canvases explore the world of young black females in the U.S.A today. She is definitely one to keep an eye on.
Miriam Cahn is a Swiss artist who uses art to explore political issues like feminism, violence, and death. Cahn creates haunting images that encourage us to stop and think about what is going on in the world around us. More about her process can be read in this article from the Museo Reina Sofia in Madrid, Spain.
Tschabalala Self lives and works in New York City. Her diverse paintings explore the black female body, both as viewed by others and as expierenced by the individual.
The Met Breuer in New York City is showcasing the sculpture and installations of Marisa Merz in a show called "The Sky is a Great Space". More of her work can be seen at the Gladstone Gallery online.
Over a period of more than 60 years, Jean Arp created work of astonishing simplicity and power. His sculptures are arresting in their ability to say a great deal in a minimalist fashion. In addition to sculpture Arp created paintings, drawings, reliefs, and collages, building a reputation as a major force in contemporary art. Peggy Guggenheim, one of his earliest collectors, said, "The first thing I bought for collection was an Arp bronze. [Arp] took me to the foundry where it had been cast and I fell so in love with it that I asked to have it in my hands. The instant I felt it I wanted to own it."
Nicolas Party invites us into a world of trees that should be familiar but instead is viewed through his unique imagination. His installations convey a powerfully primitive impression, and yet invoke refrences to historical landscapes.
Dorian Electra describes themself as gender-fluid and is one of the brightest stars in the queer pop universe. Frequently compared to Bono, their debut album is described as "ultra-synthetic, cartoonishly masculine pop". Remembering their experiences growing up in Houston, Texas, the artist writes that they felt "really androgynous: I wasn’t into the things girls were into, but I hated sports, or playing with GI Joe. I always identified with the word kid more than girl or boy. In high school, they would have crushes on boys, but I didn’t feel like a girl liking a guy. Love stories in movies were very alienating to me."
"Hubris Ate Nemesis" is the name of an installation at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art (CMCA), inspired by the turbulent waters and winds in the state of Maine. The 3 Greek words refer to arrogance, folly, and retribution as described in Greek tragedies. Wade Kavanaugh and Stephen B. Nguyen, who designed the exhibition, have experimented with materials for over 10 years. Their use here of wave-like wooden pathways is meant to recreate the experience of living through a storm in Maine. The use of wood is reminiscent of a giant suspended wooden sculpture created by students from London's Architectural Association called "The Cocoon". Other references to consider are a climbing wooden pavilion in Paris, and a tilted wooden nest that serves as a meeting room in Mumbai.
Celine Dion had already created a prominent niche for herself in the world of music when she decided to reinvent her image as a fashion icon. Her new look is bold, eye-catching, and designed to make herself the hero of an on-going fashion drama.
A unique domed complex, called the Aldin Biodomes, stands on the outskirts of Reykjavik in Iceland. Its purpose is to provide a sense of wellbeing during the country's sunless winter months. The 2 greenhouses will offer a self-sufficient ecosystem filled with exotic plants from other areas.
Helen Levitt's 5 decades of photographing the streets of New York were displayed at the Laurence Miller Gallery In New York City. The vintage photographs came from the James Agee family collection, and they present an unflinching look at the streets of New York City in the mid 20th century.
Interactive sound and vision are offered to audiences in Geneva, Switzerland, along with calligraphic artwork, poetry performances, and audience participation. Multiple rooms and Tibetan singing bowls invite the audience to experience resonance sound waves, all taking place in a former WWII bunker.
A student project at the NCCA (National Centre for Computer Animation) at Bournemouth University resulted in a process called interactive digital painting. Stuart Batchelor wanted audiences to experience the marriage of art and technology in a new way. Viewers were given a radio sensor so that they could be part of a real-time computer art experience. Batchelor's giclee prints can be seen at his website.
Shayna Leib wanted to transform her love of desserts into her love of glass and ceramics, and so she has created a body of work that is luscious to look at rather than to eat. If you have a sweet tooth for French pasteries, you can experience them as fine art without worrying about calories.
You will have to look twice at the buildings of Italian artist Peeta before you realize that he has not altered the architecture so much as creating optical illusions that dramatically affect your view of them. The artist chose buildings that he loved and used muted colors to blend with the original architecture.
Hong Kong artist Johnson Tsang lets loose his imagination on the human face in spectacular fashion. He squeezes, stretches, melts, and punches plain unglazed clay into strangely compelling forms. His works in stainless steel are equally dramatic and compelling.
As the influence of Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) continues to expand, a process called GAN (Generative Artificial Networks) has come to the fore. Originally developed in 2014, Style-based GANs are now generating realistic faces in high resolution. These machine-generated faces of nonexistent people are so realistic that they are virtually indistinguishable from "real" people, ultimately questioning the definition of what is "real". This important paper explains in detail how GANs are made.
c. Corinne Whitaker 2019