Joseba Sánchez Zabaleta | Room With MirrorSeptember 8, 2023
Joseba Sánchez Zabaleta | Room With Mirror
“It is said that scattered through Despair’s domain are a multitude of tiny windows, hanging in the void. Each window looks out onto a different scene, being, in our world, a mirror. Sometimes you will look into a mirror and feel the eyes of Despair upon you, feel her hook catch and snag on your heart.
In her world, there are so many windows. Each opening shows her an existence that’s fallen to her — some only for moments, some for lifetimes.”
(Neil Gaiman, from Season of Mists and Brief Lives, respectively)
Part of a larger series that engages with ‘footprints and memory’ and places now empty where the artist has recorded – or interpreted – the detritus of those who once existed in these spaces, Zabaleta’s paintings seem haunted. Though empty of people, their presences still suffuse the space, with an implication of absence, with someone missing that still is intrinsic to the atmosphere of his compositions.
His words : I wanted to paint the uninhabited buildings that I found in search of the memory of all those lives that I sensed should remain intact and detained in them. Waiting for something to happen, the empty buildings keep within their walls the trace of what has been lived between them. Somehow the fled love is imprinted on the plaster of its partitions. The silence of those deaf rooms falls through the walls, depositing itself between the joints in the pavement, next to the arid and dusty trace of time, among accumulated fragments, piled up by the wind in the corners.
One of the images I’ve shared in the full post is titled Marlom. Zabaleta offers the following meditation about this site, this painting, and the unknown person :
Of you there is only a name written in blue blood.
You thought it would be easy, that it would be just as they had told you. You thought that if others had achieved it, you would also achieve it. You thought while you were hiding, while the world was chasing you, what would be the best way not to be seen, to disappear, and you didn’t realize that nobody saw you, that you could have gone out on the road and walked, because those who are like you around here and you don’t look at them nor do you see them.
More of Joseba Sánchez Zabaleta’s fine paintings can be seen here.
~ Bart GazzolaRead More
Ana Žanić – One Breath – Femme Folks Fest RepostMarch 15, 2022
The first time you see Ana Žanić’s watercolor and pencil artwork is like taking a sharp blow to the limbic system. Every one of your senses screams “I know this” but cannot figure out what “this” is or why it knows it. They take on the form of something both organic and subliminal, communicating to us of the past (back to pre-history) and our deeply troubled emotional state we find ourselves in through the pandemic.
Her colour palettes are very natural and gently reassuring… mother earth will take us back into her bosom and help us heal. The meticulous marks speak of long journeys past, and reach out to our future selves to remind us that we have struggled before and have overcome those obstacles… we can do it again.
I reached out to Ana and asked her a few questions.Read More
Alina Chirila – Femme Folks Fest 2022 RepostMarch 13, 2022
Alina Chirila is an experimenter. Never one to follow a rule book, she will learn the fundamentals of a process and then play with ingredients, timings and formulas until she gets exactly what she wants.Read More
Kary Janousek – Connecting to HistoryMarch 11, 2022
Kary Janousek Connecting to History Wind - Kary Janousek Kary Janousek is a prairie transplant. She found herself living in Fargo,... Read More
Diana Nicholette JeonNovember 11, 2021
Diana Nicholette Jeon is a Hawai’i based photographer whose works have been widely published and exhibited, including (coincidentally) by The COVERT Collective’s Peppa Martin. Diana’s photos have won awards at the Julia Margaret Cameron Awards, the Moscow Foto Awards and the Pollux Awards to name a few.
“Untitled (from the series, 860 Days)” is a photo that immediately conveys a sense of solitude. The extreme blurring of part of the image takes it a step further to impart an unwanted sense of loneliness, and of not knowing how to escape it… like a bad dream. In fact, the series itself (here) is “about my experience of loss, isolation, anguish and loneliness during a marital separation.”
Jeon’s other projects are equally as personal and introspective, and often combine selfies with other photographic elements to create unique pastiches that engage the viewer to try to connect with the psyche of Jeon herself… what is she feeling here? … why did she choose this? While all art seeks to create this bond with its audience, Jeon’s work is extraordinarily successful at it.
You can see more of Diana’s work at her website, including the series Self-Exposure, Socially Speaking, Nights as Inexorable as the Sea and I, Orfeo.
~ Mark WaltonRead More
Life In Movement – The Tanya Liedtke storyNovember 8, 2021
Life In Movement
I have 3 ½ left feet. As a sometimes musician I have a great sense of rhythm, but it has never been able to translate into my limbs. As a pre-teen and adolescent, I never knew anyone taking dance classes, never attended any recitals or ballets or other artistic events involving dance… in short, I am the last person you might think who would offer up Closer Productions’ Life In Movement as a documentary film that made such a difference in my artistic practice.
The multi-award-winning film focuses on Tanja Liedtke, the late choreographer of the Sydney Dance Company, who was killed at age 29 before she could take her position. A lauded professional dancer, Life in Movement documents Liedtke’s intentional cultivation of a creative life and her near obsessive process. The dance sequences she created seem to defy physics; she would push her dancers to their breaking points yet pushed herself even further.
Watching the film made me question my own motives as an artist. Liedtke was “all-in” to an extent that I could not emulate as a musician. My passion for photography was/is a completely different animal, and I poured everything I had into it. Life in Movement helped me to focus my intent and my path forward.
The documentary will bring joy, sadness, admiration and reflection to any artist who watches. It is NOT available for streaming in Canada but you can purchase a copy from the Closer Productions website. ~ Mark WaltonRead More
Mišo Smišek – Narrative ArtOctober 7, 2021
Mišo Smišek of Belgrade, Serbia, is a consummate artist. He paints and draws. He is an incredible photographer and has illustrated numerous books. He is a regularly published and acclaimed writer of short stories. He sculpts. He creates pottery and does frottage. The breadth and scope of his work is quite simply impressive. Best of all, every piece he creates has the ability to elicit deep emotion from the viewer or reader of his work. Often dark but rarely disheartening or depressing, his work typically incorporates two or more mediums as above. Mišo has uncanny an ability to create a short story in every piece of his work.
At 64 years old, Miso studied Slovak language and literature at the Faculty of Philology of the University of Belgrade and currently works as a librarian in Boľovce. He posts regularly to social media.
~ Mark WaltonRead More
Fire Caught and Portrait of an Artist (Franklin Ugochukwu) – Kary JanousekSeptember 7, 2021
There is an ethereal look to wet plate collodion photography that is difficult to describe. It’s no wonder that people thought that early photography was a method to steal the soul of the sitter; as you can recognize the individual, but they look detached, disconnected. The camera seems to catch something more than just the image of the person… it catches their essence.
The reason for this is that these images are primarily formed by collecting the UV light radiating from the subject, a light that is invisible to the naked eye. Kary Janousek (one of 4 of the “Dakota Revivalist Photographers” using wet plate collodion in North Dakota) uses this effect to beautiful ends. Fire Caught and Portrait of an Artist (Franklin Ugochukwu) are perfect examples of the process. Many of Kary’s images have spiritual undertones that are served well by the detachment. The images are of flesh and blood seem to transcend the glass plates they are formed on.
Based in Fargo, North Dakota, Kary is likely one of the only wet plate photographers ANYWHERE with a store front enterprise… walk in to her incredible studio in the historic center of town and you can have a plate made on the spot! Recently she has started experimenting with different types of glass, creating completely unique works of art.
Shane Balkowitsch is another of the Dakota Revivalist Photographers and has been previously featured on curated.
~ Mark WaltonRead More