Top of the Stack: Colossal’s Favorite Art Books of 2022
November 28, 2022

As we near the end of 2022, we’re taking a look back at the year, starting with the books we found most compelling, impressive, and inspirational. We’ve published dozens of articles on artist monographs and compendiums of broader topics across art and design and science and history over the last 12 months, and these are the 10 titles that impacted us most.
Head to Bookshop to browse all 25 books on our list, including the highly anticipated Hilma AF Klint Catalogue Raisonné, a glimpse into rarely-seen works by Ruth Asawa, and a dive into the history of protest art. More

Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a Colossal Member today and support independent arts publishing for as little as $5 per month. The article Top of the Stack: Colossal’s Favorite Art Books of 2022 appeared first on Colossal.

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The Denizens of ‘Submersia’ Breathe New Life into Ancient Artifacts in Oil Portraits by Kajahl
November 18, 2022

From his studio overlooking Monterey Bay, California, Kajahl has created a new series of paintings that draw inspiration from the sea and ancient heritage, continuing a practice that employs portraiture to subvert white, European historical narratives. The artist merges classical motifs and mythical realms in Submersia, a fictional underwater world where artifacts take on new life.
Greek and Roman vessels like glass balsamarii, wine jugs known as oinochoes, and conical rhyton vases often depicted figures or were fashioned in the shape of human or animal heads. More

Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a Colossal Member today and support independent arts publishing for as little as $5 per month. The article The Denizens of ‘Submersia’ Breathe New Life into Ancient Artifacts in Oil Portraits by Kajahl appeared first on Colossal.

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More Than 500,000 Black LEGO Structure Ekow Nimako’s Vast Afrofuturistic Cityscapes
November 3, 2022

Through vast environments constructed with hundreds of thousands of black LEGO, Ghanaian-Canadian artist Ekow Nimako envisions an Afrofuturistic landscape brimming with strength, power, and liberation. Sprawling metropolises nest small buildings, regal towers, and fantastical details like the unhinged jaw of an enormous snake in their midst, structuring the architectural realms around legacies of myth and optimism.
Nimako’s current project, Building Black Civilizations: Journey of 2000 Ships, encapsulates this Afrofuturistic vision and invokes the mysterious story of Mansa Abu Bakr II, Mali’s ruler who’s said to have sailed from the coast of Africa in the 14th Century and never returned. More

Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a Colossal Member today and support independent arts publishing for as little as $5 per month. The article More Than 500,000 Black LEGO Structure Ekow Nimako’s Vast Afrofuturistic Cityscapes appeared first on Colossal.

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Through a 1,600-Pound Sculpture of Moving Chains, Artist Charles Gaines Confronts the Enduring Legacy of American Slavery
October 25, 2022

Eight years after artist Charles Gaines began work on “Moving Chains,” the monumental public work now stands at Outlook Hill on Governors Island. Evocative of a ship hull, the enormous kinetic sculpture features nine rows of steel chains that roll atop a structure made of Sapele, a wood native to Africa, with eight moving at the pace of the harbor’s currents and the other at that of a boat.
The 110-foot, 1,600-pound work is Gaines’ first public art commission and a sharp critique of systemic issues inherent within the American economy. More Continue reading

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An Arctic Ptarmigan Takes Flight in the 2022 Bird Photographer of the Year Competition’s Winning Capture
September 9, 2022

During the summer months, ptarmigans sport plumage of gray, brown, and black with white bellies and wings. Breeding in the high mountains where winter brings snow, the birds naturally camouflage by turning completely white. Norwegian photographer Erlend Haarberg’s capture of one of the upland game birds taking flight in the dramatic mountains of Tysfjorden won the grand prize in the 2022 Bird Photographer of the Year competition.
The world’s largest bird photography competition welcomed more than 22,000 submissions this year. More Continue reading

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Photographer Stéphan Gladieu Documents the Congolese Street Children Turning Waste into Wonder
September 2, 2022

“So dramatic, so strong, so visual,” artist Stéphan Gladieu said of his first encounter with the revival of an ancestral folk art movement in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo. Kinshasa is the capital of Congo but also one of the many places American and European countries send their waste. Though doing so is illegal, wealthier nations still export tons of debris with the knowledge that these places do not have the resources to treat or recycle it. More Continue reading

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In ‘Colonial Ruptures,’ Artist Sharif Bey Defies the Constraints of Time through Fragmented Figures
August 3, 2022

Artist Sharif Bey centers his practice around recontextualizing, a process he undertakes by fracturing long-held perspectives through fragments. His figurative sculptures unify disparate materials and broad cultural references across generations and eras—his works are notably undated—drawing on both the aesthetics of West-Central Africa, particularly the spiritual protectors known as nkisi, and the industrial histories of his family and current city of Syracuse.
Largely crafted around bits of his own ceramic vessels, Bey’s works are on view at Toronto’s Gardiner Museum in a solo exhibition titled Colonial Ruptures, which questions the inherent value and power of objects, particularly as they’re stripped from their original cultures through colonial violence and structural racism. More Continue reading

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