The Hidden World of One Child’s Imagination

In my first career as an art teacher, one of my favorite parts about it (and what I miss the most) was witnessing the creative process that happens when a young child is let loose in an environment of materials.  This of course happens within the confines of an art room, where the materials are readily available and sectioned out for specific intended uses. But the most compelling form of creativity often comes in the form of constructivism outside the classroom…often on the playground, in nature, exploring along walks in the world around them.  It’s why I love the series by photographer Melissa Kaseman where she photographs the contents of her three-year-old son’s pockets as part of what she calls “a taxonomy report of a child’s imagination.” Among the treasures: tiny pieces of paper, a broken glitter pencil, tiny twigs, and dried flowers… See more here!  

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Art Crush/ Floral Installation Artist Rebecca Louise Law

Imagine walking into a floral installation, better still…a hanging garden. That kind of situation is stimuli overload and I’m pretty sure I would die happy right then and there. Maybe you’re with me on this, but I have a maddening inner struggle with my love for fresh flowers. It’s my go-to at the farmers market each Saturday (along with avocadoes, of course), but I can’t shake the notion that I’ve aided in their demise by cutting them from their rooted life. Then I came across the work of Rebecca Louise Law, an Installation Artist based in East London, specialising in artworks made with natural materials, namely flora. Law is passionate about natural change and preservation, allowing her work to evolve as nature takes its course and offering an alternative concept of beauty. Here’s her take (via Huffington Post), “Flowers have become some throwaway thing you buy at a supermarket,” she says, “but all aspects of nature, even the decaying process, have value.” In fact, her ideal project is one that would never stop growing: “I’d love to do a permanent installation in a church or a lighthouse that I can always add to,” Law says, “where people can watch new and old flowers change and age over years and years”. “As an art student at England’s Newcastle University, Rebecca Louise Law wanted her nature-inspired oil paintings to invite viewers into a captivating setting, but didn’t think a flat canvas was up to the task. “I needed new materials to create an immersive experience,” says Law, 34. So she tapped into her roots for inspiration — “My dad is a gardener and grows thousands of flowers. It was crazy for me not to use them!” With help from her green-thumbed pop, she began hauling carloads of bouquets to her studio and sculpting 3-D installations that could spring from a wall or hang from a ceiling.” Daydreaming goals, you guys. [See more of Law’s work here + this Huffington Post article, as well]

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Art Crush / Bunnie Reiss

Textile art is a many formed craft. Its very premise is to thread senses from the fabric of life. But I suppose that’s of all art? Regardless, I’m compelled toward use of paint on fabric because the texture woos me. Like the Cosmic Animal Gloves series from Los Angeles based artist Bunnie Reiss… “I’ve always been excited by how easy it is to take something old, transform it, and give it a new life. My Cosmic Animal Gloves are one of my favorite on-going projects where I get to play with the idea of old and new, symmetry and our strange connection to the cosmic world of spirit animals.” I’d feel giddy actually wearing these, though how beautiful would these be as an integral piece in your home? Really lovely. See more of her work here!

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art crush / valentino + miss moss

Have you been over to Miss Moss lately? She’s curated such a widely creative and inspiring blog. If I skip checking it for a while, whenever I get back to it and scroll through what I’ve missed, it’s always a sweet sweet breath of all things stunning. Such artistic revelation and insight. I love it. And what she’s done with Valentino’s latest collection has me all wide-eyed and droolly (peek at her series of posts on the designer…so great.) Her combinations and pairing of art and design, based on Valentino designer Pierpaolo Piccioli’s work, is magical.  Here’s a bit of what Vogue has to share about what inspires him, Piccioli is an avid researcher, a fan of the Renaissance, an expert in all forms of couture techniques, and even more importantly, is curious and open to the world beyond the Valentino headquarters in Rome. The first step he took was to liberate the ready-to-wear show from the darkness and anonymity of a tent in the Tuileries, and let the light stream in on the girls who walked around the Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild—already a change for the better. They were wearing a collection he’d based on looking at a lot of medieval art, but particularly at Hieronymus Bosch’s triptych, The Garden of Earthly Delights—not that the clothes read as historicist at all. “I like to know my history, and then forget it,” Piccioli said at a preview… He’d also become fascinated by the work of Zandra Rhodes, the great British fashion designer of the ’70s and ’80s, known for her hand-drawn prints and floaty, haute hippy dresses… …a magical series of handkerchief-hemmed, diaphanous dresses in pinks to reds came out, delicately printed or embroidered with patterns of birds and fantasy vegetation. The girls, their hair done in simple braids, had fresh faces and rosebud pink lips. Ridiculously well imagined, wouldn’t you agree? More via Miss Moss + Vogue!

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Art Crush / Laura Berman’s bold + colorful patterns

Barcelona native, Kansas City based, artist Laura Berman has a love for pattern, design and bold colors.  And that love is impeccably clear in her beautiful work; focusing on relationships and recombination of forms that relate to her nomadic history of relocation and travel. Her series of monoprints Gridrocks, for example, is “inspired by my rock collection; exploring systems of organization and improvisational color combinations.”  The series Umbra :R (last image) explores ,”dichotomies of: soft/hard, in/out, gentle/sharp, towards/away.”  And her Starbursts monoprints (top image) deals with the combustion and expansion of space.   Aren’t they something special? I’d love to cover a huge wall with several of them. Hop over to her artist page to check out more of her work. What’s your favorite?

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Art Crush / Ernesto Artillo

I must be on a mixed media + collage Art Crush kick because the last few have been of that genre. Couldn’t pass up Ernesto Artillo’s work though. His mix of art + fashion is eye candy… [ via miss moss ]

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