So what is a monotype, anyway?

Monday, May 26, 2008

I know the term 'monotype' confuses an awful lot of what is it?

To be a bit blunt, monotype are a sort of primitive print. The artist paints his or her design directly onto a non-porous surface such as glass and then lifts the design off with some paper. (See the image on the below.)Generally, this means you can get only a few copies from one painting, so monotype editions are extremely limited.

It can be very difficult to paint detailed images this way, so monotypes work best for abstract or impressionistic imagery. The effect can even be like that of a woodblock print and the imperfections that arise from the process are part of the medium's charm.

I hope this answers some of your questions about monotypes, and we'll deal with the subject more in the future.

Broken Brown Bottles

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Well, there was a bit of drama with my isp this week so I couldn't post this article at my normal time, but I decided this would be a good opportunity to change my usual posting day to Sundays.

Today we will be looking at a piece called Broken Brown Bottles by Shera Simon (aka belltower on Etsy.)

Simon is the daughter of an artist and a pastor. As an African-American woman who grew up in the south and now lives in Philadelphia, cultural differences between states, regions, and continents have been a major influence on her art.

Broken Brown Bottles is a mixed media collage using paper, broken bottles and other found materials to express the ambivalent emotions that many African Americans are faced with when thinking of Africa. The continent of Africa is reconstructed from maps of American States, symbolically reforming the U.S. into something like that fabled, ancestral home that many children of immigrants long for, in whatever form. The bits of broken brown beer bottles invoke the wound of separation and sometime resentment that has come to exist between American blacks and native Africans. These wounds are often inexplicable, irreversible, and inexpressible.

Using the form of a map in itself highlights the artificial connections and boundaries that humans spend their lives creating and generations maintaining. Simon has managed to capture and express so much human nature without presenting a single human figure. I look forward to seeing more of this artist :)

Tune in next week to learn more about another indie artist!

Tiffany Teske Through the Looking Glass

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

TIffany Teske's love affair with photography started early. By age 7 she was already taking her own photos, and in high school she haunted her schools darkrooms. Though she has taken a few side trips away from photography, Teske has grown into her style almost to the point of creating her own world in her photos.
Ferntebrae (above) shows the overlapping worlds of Man and Nature in an almost dreamlike moment of unexpected convergence. Time slows down to a gentle ripple and slow realization dawns. How alike we are. How connected.
Yet the differences too remain and are acknowledged, not rejected.
This dreamlike atmosphere is achieved through Teske's skill and technique. Teske's method involves removing the protective layer from a polaroid photo and printing it onto a new surface. This brings out a sort of mistiness and allows some migration of the colors for interesting effects. This can be seen in all of Teske's polaroid prints. Each is unique and seems to transform the world in some subtle, fundamental way.

Thanks for reading and stop back in next week for another artist feature.

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