Nature reclaims its place: Viral by Jess Riva Cooper

At first glance, they look like feminine busts with floral print, very romanticism meets baroque. A closer look reveals many more layers than I’ve expected. Some even look rather ‘medusa’-like, unfortunately. However, it’s undeniable that the sculptures are visually striking and memorable.

The intricacy of the details is impressive. What looks like standard busts you see in art class are covered with flowers and leaves, printed or in relief. Overgrown and enfolding the busts, the force of nature and the stillness of porcelain provide a haunting imagery.

Created by Jess Riva Cooper, a ceramic artist and educator based in Toronto, this series was done during her artist residency at John Michael Kohler Arts Centre.

Cooper says, “In my art practice, I integrate colour, drawing and clay to create installation-based artwork. I investigate fallen economic and environmental climates in regions such as Detroit, Michigan, where houses have become feral, disappearing behind ivy, trees and Kudzu vines that were planted generations ago. In my sculptures, the world sprouts plant matter. Colour and form burst forth from quiet gardens and bring chaos to ordered spaces. Nature reclaims its place by creeping over structures. Wild floral growth subverts past states, creating the preternatural from this transformation.”


Viral Series (2013), Ceramic, glaze, decal, 11″ x 8.3″ x 18″

Happy Good friday!

x Sybil

(Images from Jess Riva Cooper)

As delicate as lace: Ceramics by Hitomi Hosono

Exquisitely delicate and detailed, the sculptures created by Hitomi Hosono are as intricate as lace.

”I sculpted a leaf that I found in the garden at home.  It was a simple leaf, not particularly special amongst other leaves.  However, when I started sculpting its shape with clay, I was drawn into its intricacy; the manner in which the veins were branching, how the margins ended. I found many details that I admired in this small leaf. It is my intention to transfer the leaf’s beauty and detail into my ceramic work, using it as my own language to weave new stories for objects.” Hitomi Hosono.

Hosono had trained in Japan, Denmark and London before going on to win awards such as Homes & Gardens Designer Award and Graphic Art on Ceramics at the Museum of Modern Ceramic Art, Tajimi, Japan.  Her works are found in Porcelain Museum, Victoria & Albert Museum, Wedgwood Museum and The Oriental Museum in the University of Durham, UK.

Hitomi Hosono: Leaves Bowl

Leaves Bowl, 2011
Moulded and hand-built porcelain

Hitomi Hosono: Chrysanthemum Tower

Chrysanthemum Tower, 2011
Moulded and hand-built Limoges porcelain

Hitomi Hosono: Black Wisteria Square Box

Black Wisteria Square Box, 2012
Moulded and hand-built black porcelain with gold leaf interior

Hitomi Hosono: Snow Cherry Blossom Box

Snow Cherry Blossom Box, 2013
Moulded and hand-built porcelain with gold leaf interior

I would love to own one of her porcelain boxes, especially a black one.  It’s breathtakingly beautiful in an unconventional way.

x Sybil

(Images from Hitomi Hosono and Adrian Sassoon)

Life’s little surprises: Guy Laramee

I love how the greatest ideas can come from the simplest things in life.  To be exact, everyday items and in this case, books.

The multi-talented Montreal artist Guy Laramee has such an amazing way of treating books, on top of all his other works in theatre writing and directing, contemporary music composition, musical instrument design and building, singing, video, scenography, sculpture, installation, painting, and literature.  Just see it for yourself.

See more of his artworks here!


X Alex

(Images from Guy Lamaree artworks & Art exhibition)

Damián Ortega: Taken apart & reassembled

Mexican artist Damián Ortega, formerly a political cartoonist, has a fascinating curiosity with taking everyday items apart and reassembling them, bringing attention to the dynamics of the world we live in.

The works are extremely beautiful and they remind me of one of my favorite artists, Claire Morgan. Using a wide range of mediums from sculpture, installation, videography to photography, he exhibits a quietness that is really poetic.

Cosmic thing, 2002

False Movement (Stability and Economic Growth), 1999 ( Photo credits: John Kennard)

I think his roots of being a political cartoonist really shows here.  On the surface, it seems everything is growing but on the contrary, the growth is unstable and falsely represented with the non-existent increase.

120 Days, 2002

Autoconstruction, Bridges and Dams: Extension, 1997

Selection from Belo Horizonte Project, 2004

Part of The Independent installation.

Makes me look at my surroundings with much more curiosity.

Blessed New Year everyone!

X Alex

(Images from ICA and Barbican)

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