Abigail Goldman is infamously known for her miniature murder scenes, appropriately described as “Dieoramas.” Each sculpture is comprised of various materials commonly associated with model train sets, echoing a world similar to our own and yet standing a mere few inches high. In these minuscule scenes, it doesn’t take long to notice the debauchery taking place, from nonchalant dismemberments to animal attacks. Goldman’s fascination in this subject matter began at an early age, eventually leading to a job as a crime reporter at the Las Vegas Sun and later as an investigator for the Federal Public Defender of Nevada. Her time spent analysing the details of old crimes influences her current interest in miniature narratives. Abigail Goldman lives and works in Washington, USA.
Featuring narratives of hostility and surrender, removed from any historical context Cleon Peterson creates a vacuum of detachment. His chaotic and violent relief-like works portray clashing figures symbolising a struggle between power and submission in the fluctuating architecture of contemporary society. Despite an ostensibly lawless chaos, it remains recurring that the defenceless ones are submissive to power and are forced to explore the dark world alone, where barbarity is rendered without reason, and violence, sex and drugs provide a hollow treasure. Cleon Peterson lives and works in Los Angeles, USA.
Sparkling and sweet, Hikari Shimoda’s work is at once enchanting and disarming, portraying a world where cuteness and horror coexist. Growing up with Japanese animation comics, Shimoda uses cuteness and pop subjects as a common language that represents the seriousness of today’s world. Through detailed drawings and immaculate paintwork, Shimoda’s starry-eyed portraits are often depicted in heroic costumes such as Superman and “shojo” or magical girls, revealing problems and struggles in contemporary society through a juxtaposition of text, brushstrokes and collage. Hikari Shimoda lives and works in Nagano, Japan.
HUANG XIAO LIANG
There is a strong link with traditional Chinese puppet theatre in Huang’s work. Silhouetted figures against backdrops of landscape with the shadowed patterns of trees or urban settings have become trademarks of his work. Richly atmospheric, set in black and white film-based photographic practice works transfer the viewer to another world. Huang’s works often leave an impression of a world being twisted with audience becoming a voyeur, through tinted window, peeking into somebody else’s privacy. Huang Xiao Liang works and lives between Changsha and Beijing.
Invader is a pioneer of contemporary street art. The mosaics, inspired by the first generation of video games, scattered around cities worldwide are among the most recognisable examples of the genre. Since 1998 the artist invades cities, adroitly placing his tiled pieces in certain locations and ‘awarding’ himself points based on the intricacy of the mural and the difficulty in placing it. On display is hand drawings from 2013 where he pays tribute to his pop art icon Andy Warhol and a work with most recognisable ‘pacman’ as well as LED screen displaying a snake chase in the maze. Invader lives and works on Earth.
Widely recognised by his playful interpretations of pop culture and cartoon iconography over the walls of streets of New York, Jerkface creates a gateway back to our childhood. Often on a very large scale and rich in geometric abstraction and repetition Jerkface’s favourite cartoon characters gain another life outside of TV or iPad screen. Let it be a huge wall or canvas work he manipulates preconceived notions of form into new and compelling visual narratives. His work becomes a sophisticated meditation on colour and movement imbued with all the emotion, energy and optimism of youth. His subject is often very familiar to viewer such as most recent app game ‘pokemon-go’ where Pikachu is the most influential pokemon to catch. Jerkface works and lives in New York, USA.
‘Question Everything’ is Shepard’s vision and mantra. He seeks to redefine the complex relationship between humanity and the environment. From his first sticker campaign featuring images of Andre the Giant, appropriated from the comedic supermarket tabloid Weekly World News to his most recent works, Fairey seeks to effect change from embedded and conventionally accepted systems of contemporary society. Today, more than ever, he has been dedicated to raising awareness of global warming, the destructive effects of oil consumption and conspicuous consumption’s clamorous effects on the health of our shared planet. Shepard Fairey lives and works in Los Angeles, USA.
Vhils destroys to create. Best well-known for dramatic, huge in size portraits made by carving directly into outdoor walls, vintage wooden door or stack of advertising posters often involving industrial methods such as drilling, controlled explosions and fire. Often layers of posters are cut and teared to reveal the impact of consumption on the formation of identity and the intimate relationship between the urban landscape and its inhabitants. Establishing symbolic reflections and life in urban context, majority of Vhils subjects are anonymous, unremarkable urban citizens. He sees them as organic mediums that absorb and retain traces of events, soaking up the local character and history of everyday life. Vhils is a Portuguese artist working in Lisbon and Hong Kong.