Los Angeles-based artist Dessie Jackson rotates between using mixed media, painting, and paper to create her wildly expressive portraits. With a swoosh of paint around the eyes or a whirlwind of color around a mouth, Jackson turns the everyday into the questionably extraordinary.
Lisa Vanin‘s paintings combine the natural world with a touch of the macabre, usually through the presence of a snake or a skull or three. Each piece sets a melancholy tone that leaves me wondering more about the circumstances surrounding it all. Don’t miss Vanin’s (super affordable) ceramic snakes or metal pins either.
Dumpster diving has really paid off for Seattle-based artist Isobelle Ouzman. She takes books that others have discarded and creates scenes for viewers to dive right into, whether they’re looking for a dark nightscape or a fantastical escape.
Texas-based artist Adrian Landon Brooks works predominately in painting and illustration, using found materials like wood, metal, and old photographs as his canvas to create otherworldly backdrops for mystical iconography. His main intention is to show love, loss, and redemption – themes than transcend all else.
Seoul-based illustrator Lee.K relies on pencil, ink, and charcoal to bring his portraits to life in a flurry of motion. Heavy strokes with the side of a piece of charcoal serve as a backdrop for more detailed features that are brought to life with crosshatching and dynamic flourishes, making every piece feel like it’s full of stored energy.
Simone Roscher‘s Instagram account is full of the Vienna-based photographer’s moody, thought provoking work. While it’s all clearly a reflection of her own depths and emotions there’s something there to be felt by all who view it, no matter the translation.
Photographers Daniel Carrillo and Eirik Johnson collaborated on this stunning project. Unfolded uses full and half-plate daguerreotypes to explore the creases of unfolded origami pieces and paper airplanes. The iridescent surface of the daguerreotype plates pick up every facet, giving each two dimensional piece of paper added depth and dimension.
Korean-born, Portland-based artist Samantha Wall creates work full of human emotion, all of them. Aggression, weakness, loss, and self-reflection are just a few that she explores through ink and raw talent.
“The expression of emotions provides a doorway into private experiences that reveal our commonality, a smile could indicate pleasure and a frown, sorrow. These communicable emotions reach outward from within, making our bodies transparent. I am interested in the emotions that are more difficult to penetrate and are cloaked even from our own awareness. These are the emotions that sculpt our psyches, erect psychological boundaries, and fill our shadows.”
Contemporary portrait painter Emilio Villalba has always been fascinated by the messy parts – emotions, obsessions, and urges. While his works are inspired by the works of the past, the way Villalba pieces elements together to create feels completely modern.
The new visuals are a nod to the modern art aesthetic. Subtle shifts, repetition, (re)placement, or absence of facial features are attempts to create a feeling of dissonance and pressure in the viewer. I want someone to be drawn in by the uncanny nature of a piece and still feel safe to explore the feelings and reactions the pressure gives rise to.