Have you ever flipped through a beautiful art history book, or studied art history for that matter, and wondered, “Um, where are the women?”
As an art major, I daydreamed that one day my work would be displayed in those books and on that big screen. But it wasn’t long into my first art history class that I was raising my hand with a lot of questions. Surely there must have been women making art at this time, too?
The graphic Due, La Pera created in 1963, is part of the series della Natura by artist Enzo Mari for Danese, comprising of a total of six drawings. The colourful graphics Due, La Pera not only makes adults smile but also delights children. The green Pear is playful, yet modern and brings a little stylish colour to any room, whether it is the kitchen, living room or office. The art print Due, La Pera can be secured with the two supplied PVC strips.
PLAY WITH PORTRAITS like Annie Kevans, Naomi Okubo, and Catherine Graffam. PROJECT Portraits go way, way, way back into human history. Over the centuries they’ve come in many forms— from cave drawings, to paintings, to photographs, and more. This project will place the art of portraiture into your own hands. Yes, this is all about the self-portrait— three of them, to be exact:
1. Take ten photographs of yourself, or have someone take them for you. Now cut or tear them into pieces and reassemble the fragments into a collaged you.
2. Do a blind contour self-portrait (i.e., look at yourself in a mirror as you draw, but don’t look down at the paper). It will be crazy and totally imperfect— which is exactly the point. This is also really fun to do with a group of friends, since the results will be hilarious and perfectly imperfect.
3. Reference any photo of yourself (as a child, an adolescent, or now) and make a painting using that photo as your starting point. Use loose, simple brushstrokes, or get super detailed right down to the last freckle. Give yourself a time limit so that you can’t obsess about these exercises— I usually aim for thirty minutes, with a maximum of one hour. How vastly different each portfolio is; yet all of the works shown are still portraits. That’s right— there is no wrong way, only your way.
TELL A VISUAL STORY like Esther Pearl Watson, Seonna Hong, and Phyllis Bramson PROJECT
Every artist is a storyteller in some way. Bizarre, funny, dreamlike, or heart-wrenching— these narratives run the gamut. So, how do you get started?
The Zagazig Side Table was designed for the brand Driade. Driade is a research centre at the creative core of the company’s first project, coffee tables that offer a fresh take on modern decorative art.
With the help of various talents, the firm aims to create furnishings to suit any situation and style, thereby ushering design into the modern era with unique materials such as fiberglass, bi-laminate, and ABS molding.The Zagazig Side Table has a metallic structure topped with bi-laminate adorned with digital print patterns. The frame is tubular steel, a nostalgic and trendy choice that adds charm and elegance to the whole. The distinctive shape and delicate motifs interpret the creativity of the current indoor design trends. This 13kg table measures 36cm in depth, 119cm in breadth, and 38 cm in height.
STEP ONE: GATHER STORIES.
1. Put a small notebook beside your bed, and the moment you wake up from a dream, write it down in glorious detail. The same goes for nightmares (although in that case you may need to buy more black paint…).
2. If dreams don’t stick around for you, dig into your personal memory bank. What was the story your crazy uncle told at every family gathering— over, and over, and over again? You know, the tale that got a little taller with each telling? Write it down, exaggerated minutiae and all. Be sure to describe colors, characters, and locations as well as your memory allows. Feel free to take artistic license— clearly that kind of thing runs in the family!
3. Are there no eccentric storytellers in your family? No problem. Think of the clearest memory from your past. Where were you, who else was there, what time of year was it, what did it smell like? Again, write all of this in a notebook so that it’s captured somewhere for you to refer to later if necessary.
STEP TWO: MAKE SOMETHING.
Tell this story using paint, pencil, collage, photographs, sculpture— anything you like. Use text, or don’t. Perhaps the title reveals the story, or just go with the always popular, “Untitled.” The key here is to simply share the narrative you captured in your notebook visually. Granted, once your work is complete, you might be the only one who knows or actually understands that narrative. This is perfectly fine— you’ve created a mystery the viewer will be dying to solve. The artists featured in this chapter are all expert visual storytellers, so of course, I asked them why, when, and how they come up with their colorful anecdotes. Some pieces highlighted here are simple, while others are filled to the brim with peculiar detail. Decide what kind of storyteller you want to be, gather your stories, and get to work.