Surrealist and Macabre Sculpture by Rebecca Stevenson

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Surrealist and Macabre Sculpture by Rebecca Stevenson

On:Axisweb

Rebecca Stevenson is an artist living and working in London. She is best known for her visceral and baroque sculpture in resin and wax.

“My work is concerned with the visceral and the sensual. It draws upon anatomical drawing and botanical illustration, but occupies a liminal territory between scientific enquiry and the subjective, imaginary body.”

Stevenson’s work investigates the relationship between innocence, consumption and desire. In each piece, a sculpted animal is cut, manipulated and refigured. These interventions result in outbursts of colour and texture, twisting the material or “flesh” of the sculpture into forms resembling flowers or fruit.

Drawing on the traditions of vanitas and still life, her work explores the contradiction inherent in the “nature morte“, in which transient everyday objects – bread, meat, flowers, fruit – are immortalised and elevated by the processes of art. Rebecca Stevenson

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The Disturbingly Dark Paintings by Nicola Samorì

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The Disturbingly Dark Paintings by Nicola Samorì

Italian artist Nicola Samorì was born in 1977 in Forlì. Nowadays, the artist lives and works in Bagnacavallo. Nicola Samorì’s paintings and sculptures are inspired by the work of the old masters but with the addition of scary motives to achieve this dark mood.

Nicola Samorì is Baroque-style paintings simultaneously evoke a sense of romance and violence. His Renaissance figures, first painted against classically dark backgrounds and bathed in chiaroscuro lighting, are then marred with smears of paint layered over their faces or with paint and material scratched away. In some cases, the paint is thinned so as to obscure the figure’s details behind a haze.

Working in a style influenced by Baroque portraiture—for example, the rich colors and heavy shadows—Samori intensifies the emotion and drama by mutilating his subjects. Faces are painted over or ripped apart, exposing an abstraction of bloody insides; torsos hover omniously in the darkness, their flesh melting away into nothing. By disturbing the human form, Samori disturbs the human mind. His sculptures are created with a similar aesthetic, destroying the image of the body to elicit feelings of unease. By combining classical styles with modern horror imagery, Samori reveals fear as the permeating force that it is, ravaging the lofty realms of art history with its primordial viciousness.

“My work stems from fear: fear of the body, of death, of men. I think my nature as an artist is something like feeling hopeless. Works are just temporary shelters and painting is a leisure place where you can conceal yourself.”

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Mystical Dark Symbolism Painting By Tomasz Alen Kopera

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Mystical Dark Symbolism Painting By Tomasz Alen Kopera

Tomasz Alen Kopera was born in Kozuchow, Poland in 1976. He attended the University of Technology in Wroclaw, where he gained a degree in Engineering. Tomasz paints in oil on canvas. Human nature and the mysteries of the Universe are his inspiration. Each painting motivates thought, challenging our initial response. Sometimes darkness will prevail, at other times, light. He is celebrated in visionary art circles for his acute attention to detail, mastery of color and bold use of subject matter.
Since 2005 resides in Ireland where he works in his studio.

In my work I try to reach to the subconscious. I want to keep the viewer’s attention for a longer moment. I would like the spectator to feel the need for a minute of quiet reflection and contemplation.

I usually get my ideas for new paintings in the least expected moments. The idea for new creation just appears in my head. Some ideas come from my wife, we like to sit and talk together for hours, and sometimes these chats then turn into new surprising creations. The most important and also most difficult part of creation is actually visualising the idea, seeing the subject in the eyes of my imagination. Very often while working on a painting, I see an idea for my next work.

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Yuri Shwedoff Composes Dramatic Digital Landscapes With Dystopian Univers

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Yuri Shwedoff Composes Dramatic Digital Landscapes With Dystopian Univers

 

Moscow-based Russian artist Yuri Shwedoff creates starkly beautiful digital landscapes with dark and mysteries themes, which leaving the viewer with an infinite number of questions and no explanations. His surreal artworks display illustrations of science-fiction, fantasy world that combines technology and biology.

Many of his works often leave only a single figure in a vast landscape, left to contemplate their surroundings.

In 2008 Yuri graduated from the painting department of the Moscow Academic Art Lyceum of the Russian Academy of Arts. In 2008, he was nominated for the Medal of the Russian Academy of Fine Arts for a series of works.

Yuri’s post-apocalyptic illustrations bring us through desert landscapes, lost people and the ruins of the modern civilization.

art dark art digital art fantasy fine arts illustration

Face-Devouring Photography By Lucas Simões (nudity content)

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Face-Devouring Photography By Lucas Simões

I’m not sure what it is about our nature that makes us constantly want to mutilate faces — and maybe that is just the simplest explanation for all of our recent zombie activity — but sometimes there’s just nothing more carnally fulfilling than running paper faces under an acid bath of collage, painting, mixed media, whatever.
Brazilian artist Lucas Simões burns photographic portraits, to give them such personality that their remains sometimes come across as grotesque three-headed beasts (ausência series) and sometimes remind us of sparking memories of the past (quem brinca com fogo series).
It takes skills to draw such diversity from such a simple and carnal concept, and for it to evoke such a suprising range of emotions, including sadness, fear, and compassion.
 
art dark art mixed-media photography weird

Creative “Skull-ptures” by Hedi Xandt

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Creative “Skull-ptures” by Hedi Xandt

Hedi Xandt’s work is everything of modern sculpture madness. The Hamburg based artist of Norwegian descent creates magnificent sculptures inspired from fine arts, mythology and sculptures in the ancient periods which he then casts with a dark, elegant twist resulting in minimal yet striking creations which you can’t keep your eyes off. His inherent dark but as well as their majestic and beautiful appearance resided with the enclosed childhood he had.

Xandt grew up around artists and creative beings, which is why he appears to create so effortlessly, using his creativity to the fullest potential. Not only that, he has a vision that speaks for his powerful three dimensional conceptual art; surprisingly, Xandt is for the most part, is self taught multidisciplinary artist. With formal training in graphic design. Xandt’s compelling collection of conceptual creations feature busts and skulls that are both symbols of art and humanity; composed of gold-plated brass, polymer, distressed black finish, and marble. The gold is a prominent element that adds an accent of terror to the work and symbolizes the sheer beauty of divine purity, but also it’s metallic coldness.

“I think that the main and most important aspects of my work are creativity and concept. Being permanently on the experimental side of thinking and creating, I seek to add to my skills with every piece I begin. Learning-By-Doing, this awfully overused term, applies to me just as well as Doing-By-Learning. The unison of knowledge and skill provides me with inspiration and a broad foundation to be used as a starting point for any kind of project. (Via Inkult)”

anatomy art dark art macabre sculpture skulls

Brilliantly Creepy Gifs From Old Photographs by Kevin Weir

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Brilliantly Creepy Gifs From Old Photographs by Kevin Weir

follow him on Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr.

Art director and designer Kevin Weir uses historical black and white photographs forgotten to time as the basis for his quirky—and slightly disturbing—animated GIFs. His path to online GIF superstardom began when he was in high school. He tells us that “my parents’ boss bought me a copy of Photoshop and I decided I wanted to be some kind of designer.” Having mastered the software, he found himself five years later “making black and white GIFs as a way to occupy myself during the downtime of an internship I had during grad school.” He shared the images on his Tumblr, Flux Machine where they quickly went viral.

Weir makes use of photographs he finds in the Library of Congress online archive, and is deeply drawn to what he calls “unknowable places and persons,” images with little connection to present day that he can use as blank canvas for his weird ideas. Perhaps it’s the nature of his imagination, or maybe a result of the medium’s limited frames of animation to communicate anything too serious, but despite the creepiness factor, it’s hard to not to smile at the absurdity of his ideas.

WATCH THE VIDEO:

animated gifs art dark art vintage

Zdzisław Beksiński Learns How To « Photograph Dreams » to Create Nightmarish Illustrations

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Zdzisław Beksiński  Learns How To « Photograph Dreams » to Create Nightmarish Illustrations

Whilst some artist’s make a name for themselves through depicting reality, Polish artist Zdzisław Beksiński‘s artworks take on a far darker, abstract form thanks to his ability to capture moments that would only ever be possible within a dream world.

Filled with surreal creatures set in an almost dystopian and chilling world Beksiński described each of his artworks as if they were « photographs » of bad dreams in which recognisable elements of reality interact within surreal situations – the end result of which is some truly unsettling illustrations. Tragically Beksiński was murdered in 2005, however he leaves behind a fascinating collection of work.

Whether you’re a fan or not of his theme however, it’s hard to argue with the artistic talent behind each of Beksiński’s paintings which only serves to make them more intense, expressive and of course, creepier. The artist once described his own art in one sentence, “what matters is what appears in your soul, not what your eyes see and what you can name.”

Zdzislaw Beksinski gallery

To best explain his state of mind when painting, I preferred to keep his words:

« I do not attack the board until I have the whole idea in my head. But more than once, in the first twenty minutes, this idea is replaced by a completely different one. I am attracted by the realization of what is in my head. However, often I am not happy with what comes out of the brush and that is not adequate with my vision. The first day of work is the happiest. Then, as the days go by, I get tired and more and more convinced that I am creating a « crust ». When the completed painting is hanging on the wall for a long time at home, I gradually get used to it and stop seeing its flaws. The process of painting is a tiring job. « 

It will be noted that a little later its design evolves.

« The action of painting is not about finding ideas. The painting is visible. The fact of painting stems from the need to plastically articulate one’s own vision, and nothing else. « 

If at first painting is to reproduce his ideas, then it becomes the representation of the painting he has in mind.

Interpretations of his paintings

What does he expect from the viewer?

The painter does not expect anything from the viewer. He paints without thinking about the reception of his work. He paints for himself.

Besides, he hates to make exhibitions and hear comments on his paintings whether they are positive or not.

For him the interpretation comes solely from the viewer and the analysis should stop at « I like it or I do not like it ».

He, the only thing that interests him is the pictorial material.

He considers that the content of his works is incommunicable. They come from a certain atmosphere he feels but he can not name.

The meaning of his works is not verbalizable. His paintings are meant to be watched and not told.

His paintings are not intended to answer questions but to amaze, to upset us.

People constantly ask him what his paintings represent. But for him they have no meaning. They are made to be seen and not interpreted. We must not look for why such a person is painted in such a way and with such color. When he paints he is mainly interested in the visual aspect.

Zdzisław Beksiński does not represent cruelty

Some of his paintings show skinned people, bare muscles, blood and sores.

But for the artist, it’s not about exposing the cruelty. It’s all about painting something he likes: the skin.

Tables show the pulpit reached by decomposition. For him it is not decomposition but form. Where people see traces, tasks, scars, for him it’s just lines. These are details that he inserts because he hates emptiness.
« I have been reproached more than once, that I paint people skinned or corpses. It does not exist in my paintings, and certainly in my intentions. As a painter, the smooth human chair bores me. « 
For him his paintings do not represent the terror either, « They are human characters, faces and nothing else ».
In his paintings some elements refer to death. For the painter it is normal since everyone is interested except that he paints what it inspires him.
But there is no particular meaning behind it and we must not think of it as a great reflection.
What he represents always comes from a reality he imagines. This is a representation of his imagination and not something existing. His painting is like a dream. It can be scary but by no means cruel. Some have interpreted these paintings from the second world war, compared to the horrors that the painter could see.
But Zdzisław Beksiński says that these paintings have nothing to do with the historical or political context.
Psychological analysis
For a moment the painter was interested in psychology, the unconscious and even spiritualism. But he explains that reading his paintings from these notions is absurd. It can help to understand the personality of the artist but it does not explain the picture. Zdzisław Beksiński has some peculiarities: – He hates odors whether natural or artificial, even that of flowers. – He « particularly hates everything that is organic and natural. Before leaving Sanok he burned a large quantity of his paintings. He was afraid that in the future all his good paintings would be lost and that one only finds « his crusts » and that he is known from them. – The painter confesses that his father had an influence on him by repeating to him that a real man does not cry and does not display his feelings. He was thus raised so as to have a « white sahib ». For him the fucked has become something reserved for the sexual sphere and he is anxious that someone kisses him. Some speak only of these elements to show the strangeness of the painter.
But it is an incomplete portrait. He remains a normal person: – He does not drink alcohol and does not consume narcotics. (Exit the theory of the drugged or alcoholic artist) – He had a woman with whom he spoke a lot and lots of things. When she wanted to go out, he would happily interrupt his work and leave with her. So it’s not an artist locked up in his studio who has no connection with anyone. – For him happiness is not a state that we reach but towards which we tend. – He has no desire to self-destruct.
When he has a problem he immediately looks for a solution, he does not let it go. For him the idea of ​​suicide is unacceptable.
Religious analysis
He is not interested in religion.
When he paints a cross, there is no religious symbolism.
He does it for what it represents: death. It’s the cross everywhere in the cemeteries. The man on the cross does not represent Jesus because Christ and the idea of ​​redemption are absent from his mind. The shape and the background For him the form is more important than the bottom.
When he paints what interests him is to shape the shape so that each spectator understands that it is he who made it. The content is due to chance even if he prefers certain moods like melancholy .
These works are in no way protests against the contamination of the atmosphere nor against the nuclear war. His artistic inspirations At school he already showed gifts and he did not stop drawing.
His creations went in two directions.
The first, official, had a character martyrologue. He took the example of Grottger.
The other direction was to represent cartoons worthy of the Playboy magazine. In 1948, he visited an exhibition of Moder Art in Krakow. He then realizes that there is something he does not understand but that attracts him enormously. He abandons the aesthetics of Grottger. He was then inspired by other people even though no one saw the similarities. (Wojtkiewicz, Tadeusz Brzozowski )

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Storytelling Animals Portraits by Josie Morway

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b6cfffbb51b1572d9739e3ab764b0c62Storytelling Animals Portraits by Josie Morway

Josie Morway is an artist living and working in Boston, Massachusetts. For her enchanting oil paintings Josie combines her background in graphic design and illustration with her passion for telling stories. Josie on her process:

“I draw inspiration from the bits of word and phrase that bombard us daily in the form of faded ad murals, snippets of overheard conversation, the near-illegible promises of old signage. Stories defined as much by the info they lack as by what they present. Using animals as the main characters in my narratives, I’m able to explore gestures, postures and expressions that are both familiar, universal and still sometimes as ambiguous as those partial verbal messages. For the last year or so I have been working steadily on a project I’ve titled ‘Untame vs. The Domesticati’: a series of paintings that examine the themes of domestication and wildness through symbols relevant to both wildlife and human society.”

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