Born in 1973 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Sadie Benning is a lesbian videomaker who began making videos when she was 15-years old, using a Fisher Price Pixelvision toy camera. Benning’s early works were made in the privacy of her childhood bedroom, using scrawled and handwritten text from diary entries to record thoughts and images that reveal the longings and complexities of a developing identity. Evoking in turn playful seduction and painful honesty, Benning’s floating, close-up camera functions as a witness to her intimate revelations, and as an accomplice in defining her evocative experimental form. Her work emerges from a place half-innocent and half-adult—with all the honesty, humor, and desperation of a personality just coming into self-awareness, trapped and uneasy. Her more recent work moves beyond the Pixelvision camera and into animation, film and installation. [video databank]
In addition to her personal work, she has made work for Le Tigre and Julie Ruin.
Got a Girl Crush On: The Beautiful Wood-cuttings of Bryn Perrott (aka Deerjerk)
With a largely-seeming influence from traditional-style tattoo work, Bryn makes wood-cuttings as art and not for print (minus when she’s not designing album art, beer cans, or badass shirts) and they are gorgeous!
Be sure to check out her webstore and totally follow/be inspired by her on Instagram!
Born into a family of Swiss weavers in 1892, Kunz created mandala-like grids with colored pencil on graph paper that she regularly used as instruments of healing. Each diagram was reportedly drawn in a single sitting, some of which could reportedly last over 24 hours at a time. The drawings were used to help her visualize the invisible realities that exist beyond the tangible, everyday world, and were composed with the aid of a divining pendulum that allowed her to plan the ultimate structure of their geometric configurations.
They operated both as documentation of research into and as conduits for patterns of vibrational energy that could be used to realign the psychic imbalances underlying her patients’ medical conditions, and thereby to cure them. She believed that art, nature, and life were all interwoven: drawing allowed her to take part in a world of forces, seize that world and orient it for an energetic sum leading to cosmic consciousness.
Her pieces were never meant to be displayed on a museum wall, but to lie on the floor between Kunz and one of her patients to function as diagrams and aid to meditation for the locating of a patient’s lifeline.
Got a Girl Crush On: Mica’s illustrated collaborations with her 4-year-old daughter
These are AMAZING!
Soon, she began flipping through my sketchbook, looking for more heads. “Do you have any heads for me today?” she would ask me each morning. So I began making a point at night to draw some faces for her (which was my pleasure–faces are my favorite part, anyway). She would then pick up a pen with great focus, and begin to draw. Later, I would add color and highlights, texture and painting, to make a complete piece. Sometimes she filled in the solid areas with colored markers, but I would always finish with acrylics later on my own.
Stenram’s most current series, Drape, uses vintage pin-up photographs as its source material. The women in these photographs are posed in interior domestic sets in front of curtains or drapes, offering a glimpse into intimate space. In Stenram’s versions of these images, the curtains are extended to partially obscure the women. The background envelopes the focal point and the foreground slips into the background. The curtain vacillates between striptease-drape and blind or shutter, reinforcing its role as a barrier between public and private. The resulting image makes no attempt to look ‘real’; rather, it submits to a cut-and-paste collage aesthetic whose ultimate referent is the act of photography itself.
Got a Girl Crush On: the ephemeral doodlings of Maggie Bard
Maggie Bard’s work frustrates the traditional divide between the multiplicity of the print and the singularity of the canvas. Starting with lithographic and silkscreen bases she embellishes her intricately lined, usually human figures with additional elements of collage, painting, and other techniques. Her stylized images of the human figure combine the loose biomorphism of artists like Gerhard Richter and Francis Bacon with the more rigorous line of Kalinga tattoos, quilts and other textiles, and the street artist SWOON. Indeed, if anything unites the various practices in her oeuvre it is her desire to render her subjects in distinctly linear fashion.