Framing Heck | The Hijinks of skr3am and Jinks1

 

skr3am and Jinks1 of Redlight Studio have created a number of framed street art images across Melbourne, using pictures of famous icons. So far, the likenesses of ’60s fashion icons such as Twiggy and Jean Shrimpton have graced the walls from Balaclava, South Melbourne and Brighton, to name but a few.  Others have included the former ’80s pop idol Prince.

The framed works can take up to five days and nights to produce, often using many picture frames, either collected or custom made; and placed strategically over the mural, creating an elegant, yet edgy effect.

  • Although not shown in the images above, one installation in South Melbourne entitled “Maxwell” is a depiction of mathematical physicist James Clerk Maxwell, who was known for presenting the first durable colour photograph in 1861 and the colour concept of RGB (Red/Green/Blue).

Find out more about skr3am via this Facebook page.

Freeze frames for artists of fame

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A Backview of Caspar Friedrich’s Art

[Image One: Sunset – The Brothers (1835) The Hermitage, St. Petersburg. Image Two: The Wanderer Above the Sea of Clouds (1831) Hamburg Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany.]

Caspar David Friedrich studied drawing in Greifswold before going to the Copenhagen Academy between 1794-1798. His drawings in pen and ink were admired by Goethe and won him a Wimar Art Society Prize in 1805. Friedrich’s first major commission came two years later in the form of an altarpiece for Count Thun’s castle in Teschen. This set the tone for many later works in which dramatic landscapes expressed moods, emotions and atmosphere.

  • Friedrich was appointed a professor of the Dresden Academy in 1824, where he influenced many of the young German and Scandinavian artists of the mid-19th Century; and as a result, he ranks highly among the formative figures of the Romanticism Movement.

Friedrich suffered major social difficulties during his youth and once slit his throat in an attempt to kill himself. Further outbursts indicated his fragile mood swings and turmoils which impacted his life.

  • On his return to Germany, Friedrich settled in Dresden where he spent the rest of his life until he died in 1840.

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This is why Maka’s is so popular…

Mike Maka or Makatron (born 1979) is a well known Australian street artist and painter easily recognised by his large scale murals inspired by mechanical machinery, flora and fauna.  Maka uses a mix of aerosol and acrylic water-based paints, whilst working with a variety of media; mainly on walls, canvas and illustrations on paper. His artwork has been described as capturing a world where nature fights back against humanity, reclaiming it from the friction point between man, beast and machine.

  • Maka was raised in Adelaide as the second eldest of six children. He studied art at Marryatville High School in Adelaide, followed by studies in illustration. Maka won an art scholarship and moved to New York, studying fine art at the Adelphi University. He worked and lived in New York for five years as a bike courier before travelling and working in London, Toronto and Sydney as a courier, using these opportunities to find and leave his mark on many city walls.

By the age of 25, Maka moved to Melbourne and studied graphic design. By 2006 he became a full time artist and active studio member of the Everfresh ‘crew’ in Collingwood; working with other artists, print makers, photographers and illustrators. He has exhibited extensively throughout Australia as well as group shows in Brazil, Japan, Miami and New York; and has works in private and public collections including the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, the National Gallery of Victoria and MONA in Tasmania.

  • A recent commission included painting a wine label for a bottle of Shiraz for South Australia’s Longview Vineyard situated in the Adelaide hills; which was presented in a canister that resembled a spray can.

Find out more about Mike Makatron’s art on his website or Instagram account @mike_maka

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When Art Begins to Imitate Art

Johannes Vermeer (1632-1675) was a famous Dutch Baroque period artist who died at a veritable young age of 43 years; but managed to produce 34 quality paintings during his short career. Vermeer was known to paint slowly, touching and polishing up and fine-tuning each and every picture. His subjects were subtle, quiet and often depicted typical household activities, such as:

  • A woman standing at a window writing a letter,
  • A lady dozing off in the afternoon, or
  • A cavalier’s jokes making his girlfriend laugh.

These are all commonplace subjects, but Vermer rendered them beautifully and perfectly, so that art lovers have been in awe of his paintings for almost 400 years.

  • The Girl with a Pearl Earring was supposed to be a study – the type of painting an artist dashed off as an exercise.
  • However, it is now considered a major masterpiece; and at the heart of it is the earring he made, with just two brush strokes and that small flash of white in the pearl picks up the white of the woman’s collar, the clarity of the whites of her eyes and the flecks of white in the turban.
  • No one is sure who the girl is, but no one can take their eyes off the pearl earring.

Modern day interpretations of The Girl with a Pearl Earring have been converted into a fictional story by Tracy Chevalier, which was later translated to a movie directed by Peter Webber; with a soundtack by the French film composer Alexandre Desplat.

  • Also depicted is a chalk artist aka ‘chalky’ version who has replicated this piece, as seen above.

All I can say is,
Seen this, read that,
Heard it and viewed it,
The Girl with a Pearl Earring – Just Simply Love It!

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Born Free | To Be Free

 

Be Free is a street artist who began her street art in September, 2010. She uses stencils and free flowing acrylics for installations and street painting and pasting adventures around Melbourne; which she is slowly introducing around the world.

Since her beginning, she has been trying new ideas, media and methods for interacting with the public; engaging the passers-by; and displaying art in different manners and scales.

  • Be Free’s first art piece was for her sister’s birthday – where she drew up a little map and gave her sister $5 for coffee and said take a camera.
  • The surprise was a piece created in North Fitzroy, opposite the cafe.
  • More information on Be Free is available on her Facebook page.

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Suki’s Anything But Kookie

Suki moved to Melbourne starting out in street art with small lino print paste-ups and then progressing to bigger pieces. Suki is inspired by traditional Asian wood block prints, brown-paper fabric and yarn.

  • Suki is a street artist from Melbourne who pastes and paints movement and time, dances and life around the suburbs. She works primarily with urban art installations and printmaking, though also explores materials including fabric, fibre, ink and found objects.
  • Combining subtle femininity and the natural world, she creates works that contrast and complement the walls of the city.
  • Travelling around the country and overseas to share her art, Suki seeks to draw attention to the beauty in the decay of urban walls and the disparity of quiet images against the busy world of city life.

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They Are Redheads | Not Deadheads!

Redheads is an iconic Australian top-selling brand of matches originally manufactured in Victoria by Bryant & May match factory at Church Street, Richmond.

  • The factory was opened in 1909 by The Honourable Alfred Deakin, Prime Minister of Australia.
  • The Redhead name applies to the red striking heads of the matches which were introduced to Australia in 1946.
  • The Redhead image or logo on the matchbox cover depicts the head and shoulder of a red-headed woman.
  • This image has had four major updates since its inception with a number of special issues produced.

The pop art-like design has been imitated and reproduced to form collages and memorabilia art works presented in an Andy Warhol influential pop-art style.

    • Redheads matches are now manufactured in Sweden by Swedish Match.

Strike a Light!

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Pop Art | Dot Art | Appears to Tear the Heart

American pop art artist Roy Fox Lichtenstein was born on October 27, 1923 in New York, into an upper-middle-class Jewish family. He is known as a leading figure in the pop-art movement which focussed on parody; where his work was heavily influenced by both popular advertising and the comic book style.

  • Lichtenstein first became interested in art and design as a hobby whilst at school.
  • In his last academic year in 1939, he enrolled in summer classes at the Art Students League of New York, where he worked under the tutelage of Reginald Marsh.
  • After military service (1943-1946) he returned to Ohio State College as a teacher and later taught at New York State and Rutgers University.
  • At Rutgers, Lichenstein met Allan Kaprow, who opened his eyes to the artistic possibilities inherent in consumerism; and from about 1960 he developed what later  became known as Pop Art in which images are painted in the style of the comics strip.

Lichenstein’s trademark technique is based on the 1950s-1960s comic book oversized Ben-Day Dots for his screening process style; synonymous with his highly stylized paintings.  in which the tiny dots of colour were used to create graduations of colour in the drawings.

  • Readers of the comics were not supposed to notice the dots, but Lichtenstein exaggerated them so viewers were forced to focus on this and reflect on how it affected the artwork.
  • To make the dots, Lichtenstein applied oil paint, using a plastic-bristled dog grooming brush. Later he applied dots to the canvas through a pre-punched metal stencil.
  • D*Face (born 1976) is a top UK street artist, heavily influenced by pop art and Lichtenstein’s work.

Lichenstein died in New York on September 29, 1997.

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On the Street Man with Beastman

Sydney based prolific street artist Beastman (Bradley Eastman) is influenced by beauty and symbolism behind nature’s repetitive geometric and symmetrical repetitions, glyphs and tribal images.

  • Beastman’s instantly-recognisable style has graced walls throughout Australia including a commission to paint the frontage of Radio 4ZZZ building in Brisbane.
  • He is represented in streets and galleries around the world, including an exhibition at the Inner State Gallery in Detroit. This unnamed work, painted in 2013, was a “fun, spontaneous, improvised mural” that has become a city landmark.
  • Beastman has also exhibited  overseas in London, Berlin and New Zealand.

“When I was younger I just wanted to draw monsters and stupid stuff,” Eastman has said. “As I’ve grown older my taste in art has become more mature. I am more interested in geometry, balance and colour theory.”

    • Find out more about Beastman at his website.

Hey man, let’s feast man!

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The Glorio of Loureiro | In the Springtime of His New Moon

[Images: The Spirit of the New Moon (1888), The Spirit of the Southern Cross (1888) and Spring (1891) by Artur Loureiro.]

Portuguese painter, Artur José de Sousa Loureiro was born on 11 February 1853, in Porto, Portugal. Lourerio attended the Escola Superior de Belas-Artes do Porto, where he studied under João António Correia. In 1875, he went to Rome with the support of his patron Delfim Guedes (1842-1895), the future Count of Almedina. In 1879, he moved to Paris with a scholarship to study at the École des Beaux Arts; living in the Latin Quarter and obtaining a position in the studios of Alexandre Cabanel.

Loureiro exhibited at the Salon from 1880 to 1882, along with his fellow painters from Portugal. While in France, he met Marie Huybers (the sister of novelist Jessie Couvreur) and married her, even though marriage violated the terms of his scholarship.

Loureiro sought another scholarship, but illness prevented him from submitting an entry. He then moved to London, where his exhibits attracted attention, but his health required a warmer climate. By 1884, both he and Marie emigrated to Australia, settling in Melbourne. The following year, Loureiro joined the first Australian Art Association, which merged with the Victorian Artists Society in 1888.

  • Loureiro became a “Professor of Design” at the Presbyterian Ladies Academy; sat on several art juries; and was named Inspector for the National Gallery of Victoria.
  • After Marie’s death in 1901, he returned to Porto, where he established a studio at the “Crystal Palace” (an exhibition hall modelled after the one in London). It quickly became a gathering place for local artists and their students.
  • His only son was killed during World War I.

A few months before his death on 7 July 1932, in Terras de Bouro, Loureiro was awarded the Order of Saint James of the Sword. He died suddenly while on a landscape painting sojourn in the countryside.

Loureiro | In the Springtime of His New Moon

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These models knelt for Albert Edelfelt

Finnish artist Albert Gustaf Aristides Edelfelt  was born on 21 July 1854 in Porvoo, Finland. He began his formal studies of art in 1869 at the Drawing School of the Finnish Art Society; and continued as a student of Adolf von Becker (Antwerp Academy of Art), and later with Jean-Leon Gerome (École Nationale des Beaux Arts, Paris).

  • In Paris he shared a studio with the American, Julian Alden Weir who introduced him to John Singer Sargent. After Paris, Edelfelt studied at St. Petersburg, Russia.

Edelfelt was one of the first Finnish artists to achieve international fame. He enjoyed considerable success in Paris and was one of the founders of the Realist art movement in Finland.  Among his students was Léon Bakst. Sadly, Edelfelt died on 18 August, 1905 at the age of 51 years.

  • A Finnish commemorative coin celebrating the 150th anniversary of his Edelfelt’s birth was minted in 2004.  The reverse face of the coin shows an embossed image of his face.

Is it a great painting? – A penny for your thoughts.

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Btoy Will Never Be Coy

Born in Barcelona, Spain in 1977, Andrea Michaelsson (aka Btoy) is a female street artist known for creating extremely fine and detailed stencils. Michaelsson studied law for four years before realising it was not the career she wanted and began to study photography at the Institute of Photographic Studies, in Barcelona.

It wasn’t until after her mother passed away in 2002, that Michaelsson became ‘Btoy’ and began her street art career. She found that painting offered an escape route from her stress, due to its distraction.

  • The photographs of Cartier-Bresson and their composition influenced her greatly.
  • Her street art stencils often portray the importance of women and sometimes incorporate famous portraits.
  • Most of these are female icons from the 1950’s, often depicted through powerful brush strokes combined with acute stencil lines.
  • She also sought influence with Hollywood actresses like Clara Bow and Louise Brooks, and their silent films. These women were the first liberated women and flappers.

Btoy prefers to place her artwork and posters in old places, including old textured and rusty doors and walls.

She has opened several exhibitions and provided installations and murals for art festivals and galleries in Los Angeles, London, Mexico, Barcelona, and Brussels.

Find out more on Btoy’s Website.

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Christchurch Cardboard Cathedral | Never Kitsch

  • Japanese architect Shigeru Ban (born on 5 August, 1957, in Tokyo, Japan) is known for his innovative work with paper; particularly recycled cardboard tubes used to quickly and efficiently house natural disaster victims. He studied at the Tokyo University of the Arts, and then at the Southern California Institute of Architecture. Later he went to Cooper Union’s School of Architecture, graduating in 1984. Ban was profiled by Time magazine in their projection of 21st century innovators in the field of architecture and design.

In 2014, Ban was named the 37th recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, the most prestigious prize in modern architecture for his innovative use of material and his dedication to humanitarian efforts around the world; calling him “a committed teacher who is not only a role model for younger generations, but also an inspiration.”

  • The Cardboard Cathedral in Christchurch, New Zealand, is Ban’s transitional pro-cathedral which opened in August 2013 and seats around 700 people. It is an A-frame style, rising 24m, incorporating 86 cardboard tubes of 500 kg each atop 6m long containers, timber and steel. The roof is poly-carbon, with eight shipping containers forming the walls, sitting on a concrete slab foundation.

The site, on the corner of Hereford and Madras Streets in Latimer Square, is several blocks from the permanent location of Christchurch Cathedral, (see above) which was significantly damaged in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake. Following the earthquakes, Shigeru Ban was invited to Christchurch by Rev. Craig Dixon, the Cathedral’s marketing and development manager, to discuss a temporary cathedral that could also host concerts and civic events. The concept was developed during that visit.

Ban designed the building in collaboration with local architects Warren and Mahoney. Initially it was hoped to have the cathedral open in February 2012 for the first earthquake anniversary. However, it was not until April 2012 that the site was blessed, and construction began on 24 July 2012. The building opened to the public on 6 August 2013 with a dedication service on 15 August. It was the first significant building opened as part of Christchurch’s rebuild.

  • The building has its critics and admirers and the ‘Wizard of New Zealand’, as one of its strongest critics, called the design “kitsch”. – Far from it, I believe.

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Mister Lister | What a Twister

Brisbane born street artist, contemporary Australian painter and installation artist Anthony Lister (born 1979+) lives in Sydney but his work can be found worldwide on streets, in galleries and decorating high-end shops and businesses.

As a 17 year old teenager, Lister helped pioneer the street art movement in his home city of Brisbane and is considered one of Australia’s premier street artists. He studied at the Queensland College of Art, graduating in 2001. Shortly after, Lister traveled to New York, where he was mentored under Max Gimblett; one of New Zealand’s most influential artists.

  • Lister is notable within the Lowbrow (art movement) and has been featured on Juxtapoz, Vogue, WoosterCollective and Highsnobiety. Taking influence from the dirtier and rough techniques of “Bad” painting and merging it with the spirit and practices of street art, Lister has embraced an explosive, scratchy, scrawling form of figurative aesthetic using a variety of mediums from painting, drawing and installation to film, music and VR technology. His scrawling, figurative street art style employs charcoal, acrylic, oil and  spray paint.

Lister has exhibited his work extensively within Australia and internationally both in the gallery and on the streets, including Bogan Paradise, a three-story exhibition in a disused sex shop in Sydney, in 2011, Los Angeles solo exhibitions and Unslung Heroes, The Outsiders/Lazarides Gallery, London and Newcastle, in 2012. Other exhibitions include those held at the Olsen Gallery (Sydney), Black Art Projects (Melbourne), Urban Spree Gallery (Berlin), Robert Fontaine Gallery (Miami) and Allouche Gallery (New York).

  • Noted as one of the Top 50 most collectable Australian artists, Lister’s work is included in the collections of the National Gallery of Australia (NGV), and many other notable collections. Both Hugh Jackman and Pink have purchased some of his work.
  • Commercially, Lister has worked with various international fashion, lifestyle and technological brands such as Hermès, Mercedes-Benz, The Standard Hotel, Vogue Australia, Westfield and Samsung.
  • He has also collaborated with Blek le Rat, Space Invader, Mark “Chopper” Read, and Nick Cave.

Further information and bio is located at Streetartbio.com

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Greer Honeywill | Architecture of the Heart

[Above images: Architecture of the Heart  #1 and #2 (2008-2012) Duratran, powder coated light box 96 cm x 62 cm]

Australian conceptual artist, Greer Honeywill  (born 1945 in Adelaide, South Australia), studied art at the South Australian School of Art and Western Teachers College; graduating as an art teacher in 1964. Honeywill continued her studies in drama at Adelaide Teachers College in 1967 (now University of South Australia).

Between 1963 and 1976 Honeywill worked as a stage designer in Adelaide. She designed Eureka Stockade for the University of Adelaide Theatre Guild and the 1976 production of Jumpers, both for the Adelaide Fringe Festival.

Greer Honeywill relocated to Melbourne in 1990.

  • In 2003 she graduated from Monash University, with a PhD in Fine Art and was awarded the Mollie Holman Medal for academic excellence for her work which ranged from large-scale outdoor installations to more formal plinth based sculptural objects and wall mounted text based works.
  • Honeywill relocated to Tasmania in 2010 and in late 2011 commenced a second PhD at the University of Tasmania, which was awarded in August 2015. Her thesis was – The Ever Present Eye.
  • Since 2016, Honeywill has returned once more to Melbourne where she continues to live and produce great art.

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