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If you are a fan of Surrealism, Japanese Manga, human bio-mechanical mutants or warped and unfathomably violent animated shows such as Super Jail, then you might want to stop over at the Stux Gallery on West 25th Street to check out Japanese artist Akikazu Iwamoto’s new collection of fantasy paintings entitled Secret Candy.
According to the show’s press release by Lucy Li, “Akikazu creates wildly imaginative, candy-colored paintings and drawings that offer confronting, amusing and sometimes frightening revelations of our inflated inner desires in their most distilled state.”
Some of his paintings reminded me thematically of the wildly imaginative fantasy worlds of Dr. Suess’s Children’s Books.
It’s noteworthy that Akikazu was raised in Hiroshima (where he still lives), in a house just one kilometer away from the Atomic Bomb Dome. The images and artifacts of the Bomb affected him greatly during his childhood.
The main thrust for his artwork is a general deep-seated sense of wickedness that he believes to exists in every human psyche. Akikazu cites Maurice Utrillo, an early 20 th century painter of emotionally charged Parisian landscapes, as one of his notable inspirations. His works are also influenced by the ethereal colors he witnessed during a trip to Nepal as well as the works of American painter Aaron Johnson and Canadian Marcel Dzama.
His visions take place in a comprehensive atmosphere free from the restrictions of reality, where violently mutated creatures, detached body parts and nondescript organic forms are rendered masterfully, contending an inherent connection between violence and innocence.
These paintings are all fairly large in size and look much cooler in person than in photographs. If Secret Candy seems like your thing I encourage you to visit this exhibit before it’s over, which is always sooner than you think.
Tonight’s Episode (Airdate March 19, 2013): Alien Apocalypse
Ah, we’re down to the Final Four at last, and what a handsome lot they are: Anthony, Eric, Kris and Wayne. Anthony really thought he was going home last week, but House threw himself on his sword so that Anthony could live to sketch, sculpt, mold and paint another day. The remaining contestants all know one more person goes home before the finale. Who will get chopped tonight?
The guys meet the lovely McKenzie – and she really is looking super hot tonight, I must say – in the lab, where four monitors are set up to display scenes from an upcoming, new original SyFy series called Defiance. It’s a show about Aliens! More specifically, Defiance takes place 35 years in the future, in a post-war America where humans and half a dozen alien species are forced to coexist on Earth. Because all of the other planets were full. Of course, multiple races of aliens interacting with humans create a crazy new genetic melting pot. In tonight’s penultimate Spotlight Challenge, the artists will draw their inspiration by focusing on breeding two of the Alien races to create their offspring. Here are their choices:
There are two selections of each type alien available to choose.
Anthony picks Liberata and the Mutant.
Kris picks Bioman for his buffness and the Mutant for his deformed body.
Wayne picks Liberata and Bioman.
Eric, who really wanted to choose the Mutant — and definitely wanted to “avoid any fuzzy things” — is forced to select the hairy Sensoth and the Steam Punk-esque 99er. He’s not happy.
To help them get inspired and provide them with some back-story on the series, the guys are being sent to the actual town of Defiance in Toronto, where they can tour the set, and spend some time among the actual aliens. However, due to mysterious “Family Reasons,” about which we are given no details, Eric cannot travel with them and must stay behind. WTF? It is unclear whether Eric will be separated from them for the entire episode or if this offsite is just a brief field trip. It turns out to be the latter, thank goodness.
Being on the set is really cool for the guys. They first meet actress Stephanie Leonida who briefs them on some of the characteristics of the breed of alien she plays. They get to meet Alan Cook, the make up artist for the show and he demonstrates for them the specifics of how he applies certain prosthetics. This has to be good insight for how they will approach their challenge. They also get to watch Stephanie and another actor film a scene. This show looks like it will be pretty cool and reminds me a bit of Alien Nation, if you’re old enough to remember that.
Recap Continues After The Jump!