Paul White’s Stunning Pencil Drawings

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Paul-White-Wuttke

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Melbourne-based artist Paul White’s illustrations are currently being exhibited at his “Wasteland Wanderlust” show in the Metro Gallery in Victoria, Australia.

The implied silence in Paul White’s works is almost deafening. His illustrations of decrepit vehicles and machines are set in stark, desolate landscapes, and seem to have been painted with almost a religious reverence to detail and composition.  The artist has based his drawings on photographs he took during a research trip throughout California and Arizona, last year.

There is an eerie silence in Paul White’s gently rendered imagery, an unspoken melancholia, as though the entire world has been ceased via a pause button. But the sheer lack of movement of machines designed for transit is only a part of it.

Where are the people?

White’s world is one of stasis. The trailer home, the railway freight car, the dismembered planes are all captured with a stillness that borders on the uncanny. One is, to an extent, reminded of the cinematic scenes in films like Silent Running, I Am Legend and The Omega Man where humanity has, quite simply, vanished.

Paul says that he is currently based in Australia, but has previously lived in Los Angeles while completing an MFA in Art at the California Institute of the Arts. The “Wasteland Wanderlust” will be on show at the Metro Gallery until 8 September, 2012.

Hit the jump to watch a short documentary about the creation of the show.

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Xavier Nuez’s “Glam Bugs” – A Series of Photographs

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Asha: Jewel of the Nile

In his new series, Glam Bugs, photographer Xavier Nuez finds breathtakingly-ethereal beauty in some of the most humble and unlikeliest of subjects – dead and decomposing insects.

To create his images, Nuez begins with a concept, and fleshes out the characters he wants to create. He then builds tiny sets that can be as small as a few square inches, to provide a perfect backdrop for his “star” bugs. The bugs themselves are those found already dead and dusty in basements, windowsills etc, which are then positioned into desired poses on the sets. He says that lighting setups are often quite complex, as they are required to create tiny shafts of light which won’t wash out the intricate details in the photographs. The final images are then shot on large format film, usually on his 50-year old Hasselblad cameras.

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Count Blankfein: Collected Souls

Nuez says,

When I look at bugs magnified through my photographic lens, they become larger than life icons – sometimes appearing as a heroic figure in an epic drama, or a superstar adored by millions, or a tragic victim in a cruel world, or a powerful evil villain.

I am absorbed by the contrast between the reality and the fiction of their stories. They are the anonymous, downtrodden masses whose fate is mostly disregarded:  the bottom one-percent.  With my camera I dignify these largely rejected creatures, or rather, what they represent; I want to glamorize them, and give them an ambiguous but exciting allure.

I try to see their faces and look into their eyes. Perhaps their expressions contain echoes of untold epic tales. Or, perhaps, in the end, each of them is simply a dead bug, as the cycle of life completes another turn.

Nuez is already well known for his sublime photographs of urban decay and night scenes. Of Spanish origin, he was born in Montreal, and now lives in Chicago. His photographs have been featured in numerous solo and groups shows in galleries and museums in North America.

A selection of photographs from Glam Bugs will be featured from February 21 to March 28, 2012, at the Elmhurst Guild Gallery of the Elmhurst Art Museum, Illinois.

Hit the jump to see more photographs.

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