by Rumi Banerjee
Remind me not...remind me not...
“If I should meet thee after long years, how should I greet thee? - With silence and tears”
He makes static figures with the facial expression of petrified emotions. He makes sculptures, bas reliefs, and statues. Antony Van den Brouck was born in Kersken, Belgium in 1951. He studied ceramics at Academy of Art in Aalst, Belgium in 1970. His handmade ceramics have been exhibited throughout Belgium and sold to private collectors in Europe and USA.
His Meditation, Blue Angel, Nymph, Touched by love, Touched by Love (two), Reflection and Sadness, are each unique creation in which he moulds ceramics into emotions of human mind. They are exceptionally Byronic in mood. His faces bear intense emotional expressions, and like a magician he infuses life in ceramics. He blends a kind of poetic sadness with an introspective mood, and sometimes his characters are touched by love, memories and melancholy. The work Blue Angel probably signifies an angelic distance from the present world. The colour blue, endistances the viewers, by creating an extraterrestrial sensation. Touched by Love again focuses the penetrability of the emotion-love. The figure wounded by cupid's golden shaft, is more wounded then delighted by the hit. But his face expresses the serenity which comes along with the hit and depicts this as an irrevocable reality of life.
Sometimes composed and immersed in silence. His style of handling ceramics is inimitable and somehow merges beautifully with the mood he wants to portray. His characters desire isolation, reflect on life, or silently accept fate. He works in his own studio in St. Antelinks where he lives.
“These scary dolls are not something you will find in a toy store. They are hardly something you would buy for a child. They are disproportioned, strangely dressed, and they have a character uniquely their own.” Beth Robinson
Beth Robinson is a self taught artist who has been living in Vermont for 15 years. While she is skilled in a variety of mediums, it was the discovery of polymer clay that allowed her to combine her interests in design, sewing, sculpting, and painting and gave her a concrete foundation of expression in the form of Strange Dolls. Each doll is entirely hand made using polymer clays, vintage fabrics, vintage lace, antique button, acrylic paint, and sometimes real human hair or teeth. Each piece is one of a kind. Individuals who love to collect odd, creepy, or gothic dolls will love Strange Dolls. Each doll has a unique and mysterious character of its own, much like the horror movie named Adam's Family.
Since 2003 she has been creating macabre and grotesque characters in clay for collectors across the globe. She is currently represented in Berlin/NYC/London by Strychnin Gallery. Robinson's dolls have been featured in the magazines: (currently in) Gothic Beauty, Art Doll Quarterly, SPIN, “Stuff” in the US, “Maxim UK” and “Maxim Hong Kong,” “Rue Morgue” in Canada, “RIP” in Russia, and “Nordic Vision” in Norway.
Weird, misshapen and tortured, these unusual handmade dolls are…definitely not for children, unless you want them to have nightmares.” -Rue Morgue, 2005
Enamoured by candles: The Chengxiang Way
Chengxiang Qi was born in 1952 in China. After graduating from the LuXun Academy of Fine Arts in 1977, he completed his master's degree at the prestigious Central Academy of Fine Art, Beijing, in 1997. While attending the Central Academy's research department, Qi mastered many different styles and techniques, exploring a wide range of venues, from impressionism to realism. He settled into a style that reflects the influence of the Dutch School of Art and the virtuosity of the Italian Renaissance.
Every one of his beautiful paintings reflects sensitivity to light combined with saturated color, within poetic compositions. It redefines the theatrics created by the sole effect of a single candlelight. His refined and elegant style characterizes compelling portraits of modest young women in traditional Chinese attire; their youth and quiet innocence captured on the canvas for eternity. His fascination with light is revealed in a series of dramatic “Candle Light” paintings of various ethnic minorities of China, which have become highly prized by collectors. The Chinese government has presented him with numerous awards, including the Gold award in the celebrated 8th National Exhibition. He has had numerous solo exhibitions in Germany, France, Holland and Spain. In 2001, Chengxiang Qi immigrated to the United States. He is now a respected member of Oil painters of America, and is establishing a strong collector base in the United States.
Born in Rome in 1969, daughter of an artist, from her early childhood Rabarama, alias Paola Epifani showed an inherent bent for sculpture. She started her artistic education at the Arts High School in Treviso, followed by the Venice Academy of Fine Arts. After her graduation she started participating in a large number of national and international sculpture shows, earning growing acclaim with both the critics and the general public alike.
Her work focuses on a meticulous vision of the world and life, based predominantly
on the denial of free will, the predestination of events and the diminution of man to a
mere biological computer. The artist's subjects generally have absent gazes, her figures become the prison of soul, a space for existential quest. A journey suspended between reality and knowledge. The universe here is conceived as an interwoven puzzle, an allegory for a jigsaw where each part has its proper place in a predetermined space and time. Her creations deal with various aspects like the body language, genetic mutations, human ambiguity, the identity of modern man driven by a force visionary and primitive, remote and timeless.
Over the last decade, Rabarama's sculpture has been exhibited in Milan, Rome, Paris, Cannes, Beijing, Shanghai, Venice, Reggio Calabria, Caracas, Geneva, Mexico City and Miami, with many acquisition made by international institution and museums. She currently lives and works in Padua, Italy.