Every Thursday at 1PM, we welcome a batch of new artists and artwork to our Ugallery family. This series of blog posts highlights each week's new artists, sharing a bit about their work and highlighting one of their pieces.
Our new artists this week are Jonelle Summerfield, Jonathan Jackson, Michele Valdez, Santo Cordero, and Janie Samuels. Read on below to learn more about each of them and leave them a nice comment on their profile pages to welcome them to Ugallery!
Jonelle Summerfield. Indiana, Pennsylvania.
Jonelle hasn't decided whether she's a realist or an impressionist, but no matter. Her paintings are stunning without definition. Jonelle's mother taught her how to paint after she graduated from Indiana University of Pennsylvania with an interior design degree. She paints mostly interiors, cityscapes, animals and some landscapes with varying degrees of realism. Many of her paintings are inspired by travels to the eastern United States, Canada and Europe. She says she works to recreate "fleeting moments, usually with high contrast lighting that depicts the time of day, and therefore the passage of time. With my paintings, my goal is to remind people of the good things in a world that can be chaotic."
Jonathan Jackson. New York, New York.
Jonathan is captivated by the ways in which the worlds unfolds in front of us every day. The proliferation of media has made the viewer a voyeur - bringing us all closer to events happening around the world. Jonathan's artwork reflects an attempt to respond, reflect upon, and confront narratives in contemporary history, focusing on the figure against his or her contextual landscape. Jonathan says: "For me, new media often produces a feeling that is similar to looking too directly at the sun: a glaring, overwhelming, and certainly unsustainable gaze that actually decreases my understanding of the event itself. Today's repetitive images may be ingrained in our collective vision, but the historical context is typically discarded as yesterday’s news or hidden altogether. My paintings attempt to explore the ambiguous positions of the viewer and participant in relation to world events, and the impressions they leave on memory and conscience."
Color Wheel 5
Michele Valdez. Jackson Heights, New York.
In her work, Michele looks at objects that are part of domestic life. She photographs her family’s things utilizing found light sources and creates what she calls emotional “portraits” of these objects. Michele also works to blur the boundaries between painting, photography and digital media. She says: "By focusing on abstraction and color, my process feels more similar to painting than to traditional photography."
Santo Cordero. Miami, Florida.
Santo doesn't speak much about his work but I'll share my take. Santo's collages are a fusion of symbols and styles as much as media. He blends traditional Eastern and Western imagery with today's international visual language - advertising. Along the way, his work touches on expressionism, surrealism, and abstraction. It takes a keen aesthetic eye to pull all these elements together on one canvas, and that's something Santo clearly has.
Bali Beach Boys
Janie Samuels. Brooklyn, New York.
Like Kandinsky, Janie Samuels believes that color and form have inherent expressive qualities. And like Matisse, she is interested in how color, pattern and form break down abstractly. She calls this contradiction of expressive and formal qualities "fundamental to my work." Janie's paintings are notable for their sharp line work, dense imagery and hued flat blocks of color. In all of these elements, she reveals her hand as an artist to the viewer, spelling out her processes and choices. Of her paintings, Janie says: "My work is simultaneously political and personal, universal and intimate. The subject is inspired by political or moral concerns and social observations; the titles of the work often reveal my bias."