Peocilotheria metallica

Not the name of a new rock band; This is the title of one of my latest works, and refers to the taxonomic name in Latin of a very rare species of tarantula.  Found in a small area of south-east India, this species is on the brink of extinction thanks to the pet trade and logging.  The population number is actually unknown according to the IUCN Red List:

http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/63563/0

I chose to paint the spider not only because of its endangered existence, but also for its amazing colours.  Known as a Peacock Parachute Spider, the tarantula has vivid blue and yellow markings that don’t seem possible for an arachnid to possess.

My painting was made using images collected from the internet, fractured and distorted in paint as a reference to the species’ own fragmented population and presence as a multitude of digital images online.  The image measures approx. 205cm by 180cm and is acrylic on canvas.

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Dana Schutz

http://www.saatchi-gallery.co.uk/artists/dana_schutz.htm

http://www.petzel.com/artists/dana-schutz/

Another artist I’ve recently discovered.  I’m fascinated by the way she balances grotesque, baffling horror and colourful cartoon-like characters.  Her ambiguous, splintered and whimsical images bring many other artists to my mind, such as Hockney, Matisse and even Sidney Nolan.  There’s something dynamic about her narratives and I’d love to see these works up close.Schutz-D_Lovers sch-12_009l-e1336512547624

 

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Adrian Ghenie

http://nicodimgallery.com/artists/adrian-ghenie/

I really love this Romanian artist, Adrian Ghenie… his works are really dark, brooding and fascinating for me.  I’m also interested in how he appropriates imagery from Google, Youtube and television to create his paintings.  Laurence Sillars in Vitamin p2 describes his work as having “tension between paint as paint and paint as an illusion of something”.  His work “reminds us to consider ‘painting’ as both an object and an act”. (Phaidon, p108)

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Link

Painter: Justin Mortimer

http://justinmortimer.co.uk/

I’ve found this artist in the 2011 edition of Vitamin P2; Described by Colin Perry as an emerging figurative artist who fragments “recent global events into strange and alien mirror shards”.  Detailed and extraordinary in terms of scale and style, Mortimer’s paintings are collaged from photographic sources and take months to execute.

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