Tag Archive | women

Elizabeth Yoo x Alain Robbe-Grillet

What do you get when you cross one masterful filmmaker with another masterful artist? You get more art, of course! I recently chatted to the talented creative, Elizabeth Yoo, about her recent work that uses the erotic cinema of Alain Robbe-Grillet as muse. Yoo’s expressive artwork is a treat on its own but, incase you are yet to meet, let me introduce you to Robbe-Grillet in the clip below. Yoo’s interview and artwork follows.

Firstly, can you tell us a little bit about your series of paintings based on the films of Alain Robbe-Grillet. I’ve actually never seen his films, as embarrassing as it is to say, but I’ll definitely be checking them out soon. 

It was the first series I’d ever done and it was also the first time I’d picked up a paintbrush in several years. But I guess I needed that long hiatus from making art in order for me to expand my frame of reference, collect my inspirations, see what my true interests really were. This series was kind of a rebirth for me. Through painting my interpretations of these scenes from the first four films Robbe-Grillet directed (L’Immortelle, Trans-Europ-Express, The Man Who Lies, Eden and After), I was coming into my own. I felt like I was finally freed from inhibitions. These paintings are not just scenes from films—I also see them as self-portraits. They communicate my own desires. Although more widely known as a writer, pioneer of the nouveau roman (“new novel”), and a screenwriter, his films deserve to have a wider audience. I’m drawn to the ambiguity of his films– the line between reality and fantasy is indistinguishable. And of course, I’m drawn to the sadomasochistic eroticism and this desire mixed with fear present in most of his films.

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What about sexuality in art do you find appealing? Who are artists that you feel perfect the art of eroticism? I’ve always loved Egon Schiele and you can find newcomer Kaethe Butcher on most erotic art sites, she’s taking the world by storm.

Egon Schiele is definitely one of my favourite artists. His aggressive, expressionistic style heightens the eroticism of his paintings. The angular bodies, the bones jutting out, pale skin marked by bright spots of red or blue that look like smears, eyes looking directly at the viewer, intertwined lovers: you really feel the energy. Another favorite painter of mine is Balthus, whose style is kind of the opposite of Schiele—there’s a calmness and a stillness to the figures in his paintings. There are defined, domestic backgrounds unlike Schiele’s work which has all this negative space. Kaethe Butcher is fantastic. Her style is incredibly provocative and I love the way she incorporates text into her drawings.

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You use a limited colour palate in your work, does this act as a vehicle to explore darker undertones in your subjects? Or is it purely an aesthetic/style preference? 

I think I express myself better in black and white than in colour. Black is the colour of nighttime and sensuality—perfect for my subject matter. I don’t have to think as much when using only black paint and ink—I can transmit all my raw emotions onto the paper without hesitation or forethought; spontaneity is key in my work. When I use colour, I’m usually drawn to bright, primary colours– but I worry if the colours will work together. Sometimes the cheerful colours contrast with my dark themes— I like that disparity.

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Eros And After: Pleasure & Pain in the Films of Alain Robbe-Grillet was your first solo exhibition. How did you find the process? Was selecting the final work for display difficult or are you a total planner? How did outcomes meet expectations? 

Originally, I was going to paint scenes from several more of his films. But due to lack of time, I ended up only doing his first four films—and I like that limited focus. I’m happy with how I ended up with twenty paintings. The perfect symmetry: we hung ten paintings from the ceiling on one side and ten on the other. I tend to over-plan and since it was my first show, a lot of stress was definitely involved! But I was very happy to see that people who came to my exhibit understood the work and saw how powerful and in control of their sexuality the women in the paintings are.

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Your second exhibition is underway as I write this. How does this compare with your first exhibition? 

The audience is very different and the way in which my paintings were exhibited is also very different. The walls of the gallery at my second exhibition are coloured (blue, orange, and magenta) so I feel like that becomes part of the artworks and changes how they look, which is interesting. At my first exhibit at Holyrad Studio in Brooklyn, we showed one of Robbe-Grillet’s films during the reception—so the audience (mostly twenty-something year olds) got a really full experience. At my second exhibit at Home Art Gallery in Long Island– it’s a suburban area and it’s an area with people of all ages, so the reaction was a bit different. Most of the Robbe-Grillet paintings were shown, as well as other artworks of mine with thematic and stylistic similarities. Most of the people at both exhibits had never seen a Robbe-Grillet film—so it was a pleasure for me to introduce them! I was able to meet Robbe-Grillet’s widow (and a very famous dominatrix in France) Catherine Robbe-Grillet twice shortly after my show and she told me I was “converting” people into “Alain fans”—so my work was done!

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How important do you think exhibiting work is as an artist, especially given the plethora of online spaces art can be showcased these days?

I think it’s extremely important because you don’t get a real sense of the size, texture, and detail in a work of art unless you see it in person. I like to stand for a long time in front of an artwork when I’m at a gallery because I try to see the artist’s process: the brushstrokes they made, how many layers of paint they used, etc. It’s a totally different experience, too, seeing an entire series or a body of work in a gallery—you’re totally in that artist’s world and there’s almost a private communion between you and the artworks. Online,you may get a more scattered, incomplete experience.

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You obviously love film. Can you recommend five films and/or directors to us? 

Alain Robbe-Grillet’s Trans-Europ-Express (which I screened at my first show) is very playful and sexy—about a film-within-a-film. A director (played by Alain Robbe-Grillet himself), a script supervisor (played by his wife Catherine), and a producer, riding the Trans-Europ-Express from Paris to Antwerp, discuss ideas for a crime movie about a man who will travel on the same train they are on. This character, played by Jean-Louis Trintignant, smuggles cocaine into Antwerp and becomes involved with a prostitute played by Marie-France Pisier. The two have daytime trysts involving sadomasochisticplay that eventually become fatal.

Jean-Pierre Melville’s Le Samouraï. Melville is my absolute favourite director—a Frenchman who loved American gangster films and film noir, like me—this film stars my favourite actor Alain Delon playing a quiet hit man who follows the code of a samurai.

Roger Vadim’s Barbarella: Jane Fonda in some of the sexiest costumes ever. I adore her combination of innocence and total lack of shame about her sexuality. Campy fun. Shirley Clarke’s The Connection. I worked with director Immy Humes on an upcoming documentary about Shirley, who was an independent filmmaking rebel. My favourite film of Clarke’s is about a group of jazz musicians jamming in this Greenwich Village apartment as they wait for their drug dealer to come. A documentary film crew shoots them and it raises all sorts of questions about “realism.”

Agnès Varda’s Le Bonheur—absolutely beautiful, colourful film about a happily married couple, which takes a devastating turn after the man cheats on his wife. I really love the disparity between the colours and this dark undercurrent.

yoo

From your website I can see you are a total all-rounder when it comes to creativity! I love this. I also dabble in many art/creation forms. I’ve often felt the pressure to pick one art-form to focus on and excel in. Can you relate to similar concepts? Do you ever feel overwhelmed by having such an active mind? 

I often do feel very overwhelmed! I have terrible insomnia due to my overactive mind. I often do most of my work into the night because I have no sense of time passing. My other passion besides painting is writing. I write very dark, twisted noir stories, psychological thrillers—a bit like Patricia Highsmith—and stories that fuse eroticism with horror. Once I am completely happy with my stories (I’m too much of a perfectionist which is why it takes me so long to complete a story!) I will eventually post them on my website with an illustration to accompany each story. My goal is to find a way to link my love of visual art with my writing.

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See more of Elizabeth’s work on her website.

Beth Hoeckel

I’m loving these fun, feminine collages by Beth Hoeckel. Each piece connects femininity and sexuality with everyday objects like waffles and plants to create super powerful imagery with an understated connection to the goddess. Oh yeah, what more could you want? Plus, you can grab them for under $20. Links below each image. Peace and love x

crescent

Crescent

waffle

Waffle

seasonal

Seasonal

seethe

Seethe

Erik Jones

I love the vibrant artwork of Erik Jones. His work combines realism with abstraction and surrealism to create striking statement art that revolves around women. Here’s a few pieces I like, but check out a whole lot more here (it’s worth it, I swear).

erik the swinerik jones

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Weapon

Liv Thurleys artwork, Weapon, is to die for… and almost in the literal sense. When I first saw this image I wasn’t aware of the materials used and just thought they were gimmicky underwear with rubber bristles sticking out to represent pubic hair. I thought this was pretty cool and how funny it would be to flash people when wearing these knickers. Upon research and discovering the wonderful Liv Thurley, I was pretty happy to discover that these were hundreds (?) of tiny pins – sharp end sticking out. Thus the title, Weapon, becomes even more true. As a woman, I know that vaginas are very much weapons – commonly used against us, but also able to be used by women as personal power and influence. Thurley explains she overheard a group of boys talking about how they would never sleep with a woman if she had pubic hair. Soon after, this brutal creation was formed.

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Hannah Adamaszek

Living in Christchurch, New Zealand has its downfalls. After the February earthquake (22/2/11) a lot changed – buildings were gone and the perks of city life diminished. Places to eat, drink and spend the early hours of the morning are hard to find and they aren’t what they used to be – although the new scene that is (slowly) building is pretty nice. All it needs, in my opinion, is some more creative, unique people to occupy it. In terms of post-earthquake perks, the addition of visually spectacular street art has to be at the top of the list. Around the city are huge pieces of art scattered on old, brick walls as well as resting on slick walls of the very newest buildings. Street art is truly a wonderful type of art. It brings joy and creativity to otherwise bland landscapes and is always united by its distinct style. I recently discovered Hannah Adamaszek (online unfortunately, her work does not grace my city yet) who is both a street artist as well as painter and drawer. Her work is incredibly delicious. Bohemian energy and whimsical colours connect in her feminine art that focuses on the female face. Whether big or small, her women look pretty damn enticing. Here are a few pieces that stood out to me, but do check out her website for much more – it’s a lovely website and you can also get the link to her blog there. We might be two peas in a pod, as while Hannah makes all this amazing art she also co-runs an art blog to help support other artists. Pretty cool, huh?

hannahSaltwater-Love-hannah adamaszekStorm-ChaserWhitechapel-3-web

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Caitlin Shearer

“If i had my way i would move to the mountains tomorrow, buy a pet goat, and spend all my days painting pictures in a glass walled sunroom.” – Caitlin Shearer.

Caitlin Shearer is an artist from sunny Australia. Her work is really cool, both in style and subject matter – you can expect to see girls and plants and the occasional cat. I found some of her drawings on another website a few days ago which prompted me to google her. I was happy to find more of her work, with certain pieces having a bit more spunk as well as a feminist attitude. Really, I couldn’t have hoped for more! Her blog is filled with sketches, photographs and whimsical words (hence the pull-quote), making it one of those sites to linger on for hours while getting inspired. You can also buy limited edition prints here which I would definitely recommend doing.

Caitlin-Shearer641-500x359bad girlsCaitlin-2-500x357 Caitlin-Shearer-500x609 Caitlin-Shearer14-500x348  netmilkmedusa caitlin

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December – Lucy Yu

Visual Female for the month of December is the talented illustrator and artist, Lucy Yu. Originally from New Zealand, Lucy now lives and works in Melbourne. But I thought it would be nice to end the year with an artist from my homeland, and Melbourne is still pretty close. What a year it has been – so many amazing interviews each month as my Visual Female’s continue to impress!

Lucy’s work is ultra feminine and dreamy, with beautiful women and animals combined to perfection. Take a look here. I look forward to sharing more great interviews in 2015! Until then, stay cool and keep supporting artists in any way you can! xx

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November Print Picks

Here’s a selection of art prints I think are pretty cool. If you also think these are cool then click on the link (the talented artists name) to be taken to the magical place where you can purchase them. All are really reasonably priced, so why not spoil yourself or a loved one? With Christmas coming it’s pretty much the ideal time for shopping and supporting artists. They all really appreciate it, I guarantee you. xx

natfoss

Natalie Foss

helen green

Helen Green

feline zegers

Feline Zegers

alex garant

Alex Garant

Sofia Bonati

Sofia Bonati

October – Babi Tubelo

Visual Female for the month of October is the talented artist and illustrator, Babi Tubelo. Babi’s art is whimsical and wonderful, with a dreamy, feminine energy. Born in Brazil, Babi incorporates her own culture into her work as well as drawing inspiration from Japanese prints and her love of Cubism. Check out the interview here.

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Move Monday: Games for Girls

Today’s Move Monday is a video clip for the song Games for Girls by Say Lou Lou x Lindstrøm. Stylish, stunning twin sisters make up Say Lou Lou and I wanted to showcase them as much for their 70s vibe as their music and playful video clip.

say lou lou

Life should always have room for fun. Enjoy this clip below xx

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Self-Centred

It has been a while between posts, but I’m using my 26th birthday as an excuse. The celebrations kicked off on Saturday with a birthday brunch with my family, followed by a sunny day with friends and bubbles. For my actual birthday on Monday  I had a combination of work, short-story editing, beer, amazing food, more bubbles and great company. Considering it has been all about me, I thought I would showcase some of my artwork this week. It’s been a while since I’ve showcased my personal work so here’s a look at a range of my more recent work. To see more you can check out my website or follow me on Facebook for regular updates. That would make me happy. Peace and Love xx

anna mckay bathing charlottemoon-08 anna mckay white eyes Like sniffing dogs web anna mckay recline SONY DSC

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September – Alejandra Sáenz

Visual Female for the month of September is up today for your viewing pleasure. Alejandra Sáenz is a talented graphic designer and illustrator from Venezuela. Her emotive, dark art is strong and captivating and well worth checking out. Get to know Alejandra a little more by reading her interview here.

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Bec Winnel

Australian artist, Bec Winnel, is one talented lady! Her amazing, detailed illustrations are both precise and evocative with reference to flowers and nature. Winnel often portrays sensual women in an ethereal style that is both dreamy and a little haunting. She writes, “Through my portraits, I hope to contribute to society with beautiful and positive imagery of women, to hopefully remind us that women are beautiful, loving, mysterious creatures with an abundant amount of nurturing to offer. My art is a visual celebration of femininity and freedom of self expression, also an expression of my journey through womanhood.” Here is a selection of her work from a range of media. To see more visit her website.

Signal-Fire AtTheBottomOfTheGardenIntertwinedYouCompleteMeCancy

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Move Monday: Woke up as a Wolf

Today’s Move Monday is a video clip for the song Woke up as a Wolf by ZaZaZoZo. These guys are really fun and interesting. I enjoy the video and love the song too – catchy and cool. After watching this clip I recommend taking a look on their website, which looks full of creativity and inspiration. Enjoy!

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Move Monday: Tongue Tied, Move Monday: AnimalsMove Monday: Waiting for the Worlds to Change,

Estela Cuadro

Estela Cuadro is an artist from Argentina. Her work is very colourful and feminine, with dreamy, natural lines organically working together to form delicate shapes and bodies. I love the vibrancy and mystical, carnival energy that radiates from her work. She is certainly a fun artist filled with positivity. You can see the awesome environment in which these works are created in a studio shot below. Enjoy!

serie mujeres coquetas - - serie mujeres coquetas[1] serie otra mujer coqueta  _MG_5256 giran soles

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Blue Companions

I have connected these images together through their unifying blue colouring and the pairing in each image. Each pairing is different but they all have a slightly eerie nature to them and exude a highly emotive power.  The first, a man and a woman amid sex (Milan Nenezic), next, two blue birds in a stormy setting (Zofia Bogusz) and finally, two women holding hands, eyes closed awaiting their moment (Shae Acopian Detar). I love all these images separately and even more when viewed together. Truly amazing painting by both artists and a captivating photography and fashion combo by Detar.

DREAM oil on canvas- milannenezic Dreamer-Zofia_Bogusz Shae Acopian Detar Photography

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Alex Stoddard

These stunning photographs by Alex Stoddard highlight the raw connection between humans and nature. Women are seamlessly integrated into the delicious, dangerous environment or are shown breaking out of it with fierce dynamism. I love the earthy aspects to many of his pieces, with the third image shown here reminding me of scenes from Antichrist. I want to see these images moving and to delve deeper into their essence, however, I suppose they are perfect just as they are. What do you think?

alex-stoddard-28 alex-stoddard-09 alex-stoddard-08 alex-stoddard-05

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August – Kaethe Butcher

Visual Female for the month of August is up on this fine Friday (yay, weekend!). Super-talented illustrator, Kaethe Butcher, is answering my questions for August. Her black and white illustrations are compelling, erotic and well worth checking out. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to get to know Butcher and her inspirations a little bit better. You can check out the interview here.

me cruella de ville

With Words

pieter_hugo_nollywood_sailor1

So today I am sharing something a little different to my usual visual-based posts. Lately I have found some really good, really fierce poetry that looks at the portrayal of women and race in popular culture. Of course we all know how skewed the world is and that mainstream music, film and literature often adds fuel to the fire – the white male view-point reigning supreme. These two talented women use their words to reevaluate what so many people just accept as normal. I’ve added a few images that I feel work with the essence of this post and, well, just because I am The Visual Female after all. The above image is by Pieter Hugo (which I got the privilege of seeing at an exhibition a few years ago), and the other two are taken from new wave classic Pierrot Le Fou (1965). Please take the time to watch both clips, they are very powerful and worthwhile.

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The mainstream view about these issues….

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What our response should look like

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Move Monday: Tongue Tied

It’s Miley on Monday, with the assistance of surrealist artist and filmmaker, Quentin Jones. I love the track that goes with these fun and sensual images. The black and white palette works to enhance the bondage aspects of the piece which is visually interesting and unique. As debatable as Miley has been in the past year, I love that she doesn’t put herself under the male gaze. Her body and sexuality is always connected to her, and her personality and agency is apparent. There is nothing better than seeing women collaborate to make art that isn’t afraid of sexuality and is above aiming to please the male gaze. I hope you enjoy this video.

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Move Monday: AnimalsMove Monday: Waiting for the Worlds to ChangeMove Monday: Import,

July – Elia Fernandez

Visual Female for the month of July is up today for your viewing pleasure. Elia Fernandez is a talented artist with a very interesting mind! Her emotive, soulful art matches her outlook on life which is all about making the most of the world around us. Have a read and deepen your knowledge like Elia would want you to do!

elia

Milan Nenezic

Milan Nenezic is a fantastic, realistic painter. I love the colours in this image which is part of a series that captures moments often ignored in art. This one, called ‘The Moment After’, exudes a safe serenity and a heightened sensuality post intimacy. Evocative and emotional, Nenezic creates some truly fascinating paintings well worth exploring.

Moment After-milannenezic

Here are a few more images from this series that I particularly like.

The moment after Katarina- oil on canvas-  100cm x 140cm The moment after- oil on canvas- 100cm x 140cm

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Bath time

I find these two pieces by Lee Price really cool. Price is interested in exploring the relationship between women and food in her realistic paintings. For me, the first image shows the negative side; binge eating, excess food and a melancholy attached to the image. The second image is more fun and frivolous, and the licking aspect combined with the bath setting allows it to acquire an erotic aspect, which I really love. Interesting pieces from an interesting artist.

leeprice2 leeprice

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Move Monday: Animals

For today’s Move Monday I have chosen the song ‘Animals’ by The GOASTT (Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger) which comprises of Sean Lennon and Charlotte Kemp Muhl. I have to say these guys are one dreamy couple, and this psychedelic take on the 60s cult vibe is pretty awesome. With some really lovely imagery accompanied by an enjoyable tune, this might help you handle Monday a little better!

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June – Natalie Foss

Visual Female for the month of June is up today for your viewing pleasure. This month I feature the super-talented Natalie Foss. An amazing illustrator from Norway, Natalie’s work is unique and evocative. Check out her work and the interview here. You won’t regret it! xx

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May – Jessica Singh

Visual Female for the month of May is up today for your viewing pleasure. Jessica Singh is a super talented illustrator with a great mind and lots of interesting things to say! Not only is the interview worthwhile, but all the links Jessica wanted to share are also pretty rad (I should know, I have been browsing them and getting into a link-click web of inspiration! Tab overload). So, if you feel like some enlightenment, looking at visual treats and perhaps wasting away your afternoon (in the best way possible) then it is time to get reading!

jsingh_illustrator

Move Monday: Lowell

I have been wanting to add more variety to The Visual Female for a wee while now and have decided to achieve this through some movement! Yes, joyous videos! As a cinema fan, I have a big passion and appreciation for the moving image. It can be highly creative, mysterious, sensual, spooky and evocative. While I’m not the best at keeping to strict rules and regiments, I am hoping to share a few videos a month on a Monday for this new feature, Move Monday.

To kick things off I wanted to share this fun and artistic video by an artist I recently discovered called Lowell. She’s pretty phenomenal and one of those oh-so-amazing all-round creatives that can sing, write, paint, produce while always looking like an authentic babe. I’ve chosen her song Cloud 69. I love the raw energy and fun, vintage nature of the images and film stock. Also, the song is really cool and you’ll feel like you’ve heard it a million times on your first listen. Catchy in a positive way, I hope you like seeing some visual stimulation while listening to a great track. To get to know Lowell a bit more and listen to some more of her music, check out her interview for Pilerats.

‘Twas the night before Christmas…

Merry Christmas Eve and Christmas Day to all my lovely little readers.

I hope you all have magical days. Magical in the good way, not the Mark Ryden way (haha). But hey, if that’s what you are hoping for then I hope that happens too! I thought this picture by him seemed somewhat appropriate for Christmas eve.

Thanks for checking in, reading my posts and supporting the amazing artists that I showcase here on The Visual Female.

May your dreams all come true!

mark ryden

Asunder on Sunday

Something  little dreamy for your Sunday. This piece is called ‘Asunder’ and is by the wonderful Kelly McKernan. 

a·sun·der adv.
1. Into separate parts or pieces
2. Apart from each other either in position or in direction

asunder

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