Cousins Kissing: Shoes and other creatures

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Anna-Wili Highfield, Hummingbird (2013)

I like putting things together that you wouldn’t think of putting together, which is why I’m a collage artist.

Chloe, 2008 collection

So here’s a new series in which I’ll pair two artist/creators whose work, though unrelated, is similar————like, say, Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew and Tony Bennett singing “The Lady Is a Tramp” with Lady Gaga as the Lady.

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Collage Materials: Jim Hodges

A close-up of Jim Hodges’ ‘Every Touch’, a breathtaking curtain of hundreds of artificial flowers meticulously sewn together.on view in “Secret Garden”, Perelman Building

Jim Hodges, “Every Touch,” (detail) 1995

Jim Hodges does a lot with flowers.  Also mirrors, granite, scarves, and, oh yeah, paper.  The results are magical and exhilarating. Also fragile and sorrowful. In many of his works, a collage aesthetic is at play.

'Untitled' (2000) by Jim Hodges

Jim Hodges, Untitled, 2000. Acrylic on newspaper, 56 x 68.6 cm. Courtesy the artist.
Artlicks via Another Mag.

Paper was the first material that fascinated him. He talked about it during his 2009 exhibition Love, Etc. at the Centre Pompidou in Paris in an interview with Christophe Ecoffet.  Hodges liked “the flexibility of paper, how paper can tear, and be unfolded and folded.”  In one work, he collaged hearts cut from painted newspaper.

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Crazy & Wackers

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Isa Genzken “Bouquet” 2004
plastic, wood, lacquer, mirror foil, glass

“A kind of artistic bag lady.” That’s how one French critic described sculptor Isa Genzken.    Her “bricollage of   materials and manners, idioms and styles creates a willful and bewildering confusion.”

An English critic went further.  He saw the artist’s work in the context of what he calls “the one insurmountable fact” about her, “that Genzken suffers from prolonged periods of mental ill-health.”

Abendmahl

Isa Genzken, “Abendmahl (Last Supper),” 2008
Aluminum plate, mirror foil, spray-paint, tape, color print on paper

What?  An artist making work whose meaning you can’t “always grasp”?  She must be nuts!    Whatever Genzken’s difficulties, the “ungraspable” quality of an artwork hardly qualifies as a reason to get out the butterfly nets.

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