The City Different: A Deep-Rooted Art Scene Is the Key to Santa Fe’s Magic
October 1, 2022

As one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in the United States, Santa Fe has long enchanted visitors with its rich history and unquestionable beauty. Situated at the base of New Mexico’s Sangre de Cristo Mountains, Santa Fe’s tranquil yet rugged environs engender both inspiration and isolation, providing ideal conditions for a multicolored artistic paradise […] Continue reading

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Sunlight Illuminates a Full Spectrum of Color As It Filters Through Hummingbird Wings in a New Photo Book
September 30, 2022

Poetry in the Sky is a fitting title for a book of the elegant images of Australian photographer Christian Spencer. Slated for release next month, the volume gathers approximately two decades’ worth birds Spencer encountered during visits to the Brazilian Amazon, including macaws, emus, and the species he’s perhaps most notable for documenting: the hummingbird.
Taken when the creatures are mid-flight and beating their wings at incredible speeds, Spencer’s striking photos capture sunlight as it filters through their feathers, emitting a full spectrum of color. More Continue reading

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A Menagerie of Contemplative Animals by Mila Zemliakova Weave Textile Traditions and Nature
September 29, 2022

Using vintage textiles from both her personal and her family’s collection of bedspreads and home decor, artist Mila Zemliakova sews plush animal sculptures that connect various traditions of her Belarusian heritage. She draws correlations between her chosen creature and each pattern, color, and type of fabric, capturing the essence of a deer in floral brocade or that of a bison with tufted gray wool.
Largely oversized and perched in chairs, the anthropomorphic characters are expressive and often photographed outdoors in states of contemplation and solitude.  More Continue reading

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Vintage Baubles and Foliage Encircle the Enchanting Glass Dioramas of Artist Amber Cowan
September 23, 2022

In her solo show Gathering the Sky, Mining the MilkAmber Cowan emphasizes the legacy of color. Through intricately layered dioramas of pressed glass, the Philadelphia-based artist explores the histories of lavender, jade, and opaque white. Her assemblages meld custom and found pieces sourced from primarily defunct factories in the United States, many of which produced a specific palette of colors like the sky blue of “Ecco to the Bridesmaid: ‘I Know Not What Has Happened to Your Pod.” Comprised of two symmetrically shaped panels, the diptych blends an array of materials and generational references, including the 1992 Sega video game Ecco the Dolphin and the emblem of Louis Comfort Tiffany, the artist behind the iconic opalescent stained glass lamps. More Continue reading

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Innumerable Layers of Glass Evoke Movement in Nature in K. William Lequier’s Sculptures
September 22, 2022

Crashing waves and ice crystals sprawling across a window pane are two of the naturally occurring motions reflected in the works of K. William LeQuier (previously). Based in Readsboro, Vermont, LeQuier carefully layers carved sheet glass into delicate sculptures that twist and writhe atop minimal black armature. The overlapped material varies in opacity, with the outer details often appearing paler in color and the dense portions emitting a blue-green hue. More Continue reading

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Undulating Lines and Geometric Shapes Comprise a Minimally Illustrated Menagerie
September 15, 2022

In Surf & Turf, designer Adam G., who’s behind the Santa Monica-based studio TRÜF Creative, transfers his signature messymod style from typography to biology. The ongoing illustrated series melds geometric shapes, clean lines, and squiggly forms into playful interpretations of foxes, roosters, and piranhas.
Varying from stark and abstract to more dense compositions, the minimal creatures are all rendered in the designer’s signature red and black color palette. More Continue reading

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Introspective Oil Paintings by Laura Berger Convey Transformation and Protection Through Entwined Bodies
September 8, 2022

In Chrysalis, artist Laura Berger encapsulates the raw emotional energy of transformation in a soft, subdued color palette of blues and pinks. The solo show on view now at Stephanie Chefas Projects features a collection of oil paintings that center on entwined figures, their bodies protected by each other and their limbs sometimes positioned as shields.
In comparison to Berger’s earlier paintings, this body of work diverges in opacity, with translucent appendages and torsos emerging through other figures. More Continue reading

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Colorful Digital Illustrations by Calvin Sprague Balance Order and Chaos
September 6, 2022

A patchwork of geometric shapes and clean, black lines comprise the bold, dynamic illustrations of Rotterdam-based artist Calvin Sprague (previously). Digitally rendered in retro color palettes, animals, foliage, and facial features layer into compositions dense with abstract details. Monochromatic backdrops tend to frame a central figure or scenario, which sometimes camouflage additional figures and elements within their structural forms.
Prints, t-shirts, and other goods featuring Sprague’s works are available in his shop, and you can dive into an archive of his illustrations on Behance and Instagram. More Continue reading

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September 2022 Opportunities: Open Calls, Residencies, and Grants for Artists
September 2, 2022

Every month, Colossal shares a selection of opportunities for artists and designers, including open calls, grants, fellowships, and residencies. If you’d like to list an opportunity here, please get in touch at hello@colossal.art. You can also join our monthly Opportunities Newsletter.
 
Open Calls
Joyce Awards (Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis, Minneapolis-St. Paul)
Artists of color working in Chicago, Detroit, Indianapolis, and Minneapolis-St. Paul can apply for the Joyce Awards, which commissions new work from five artists. More Continue reading

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In Introspective Paintings, Artist Ocom Adonias Explores Narratives of Blackness
August 19, 2022

Fusing history with the political and social contexts of today, Ocom Adonias’s work interprets the experience of moving through the world in a Black body. His vibrant, realistic paintings portray people in ordinary moments of ritual, solitude, and bonding, honing in on individual narratives to convey a broader message. “I’m particularly interested in the global conversation of what being an African and what being Black means, history, and the representation of the Black figure in the contemporary sense,” he shares. More Continue reading

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Scratchy Pencil-and-Ink Drawings by Jon Carling Conjure Mythical Beings and Surreal Sorcery
August 16, 2022

From his studio in northern California, artist Jon Carling summons the metaphysical by scrawling scenes tinged with magic and whimsy. He works in pen and pencil, layering lines and wispy markings into a wave of florals enveloping a levitating figure or a beam radiating from a woman’s eyes. Many of the works feature an element of hidden sorcery, veiling the largely natural subject matter with mysteriously powerful energy.
Although devoid of color, Carling’s drawings capture the trippy, psychedelic imaginations associated with the rock music that dominated the Sixties and Seventies and provided the soundtrack for his childhood home. More Continue reading

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The Best Colored Pencil Sets for Aspiring Artists in 2022
August 14, 2022

Whether for art classes or for projects that need pizzazz, a set of good-quality colored pencils is a must for every back-to-school season. It can be overwhelming finding the right one, however, as many colored pencils are geared toward pros. For most students, a solid beginner set—while not necessarily lightfast—will suffice. You’ll quickly see that […] Continue reading

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In Graham Franciose’s ‘Morning Coffee Paintings,’ Dreamlike Watercolor Works Capture the Day’s Unmediated Emotion
August 12, 2022

Many days, artist and illustrator Graham Franciose sits down with watercolor, gouache, and a small sheet of cotton paper to paint a whimsical scene or surreal moment. A skateboarder carries a tree in a backpack, an anxious figure peeks through a colorful monster mask, and an oversized lion snarls at an approaching man. “I like to do these first thing in the morning when I am still not fully awake and start with a blank slate and no preconceived idea,” he tells Colossal. More Continue reading

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