When you think of traditional carpets from Azerbaijan, the thought of contemporary art does not quickly spring to mind… but these beautiful, and modern works will change that. Faiq Ahmed, a native of the Eurasian nation, has taken his countries old-school art form and brought it beautifully into the current era, deconstructing the ancient process of weaving and adapting it to todays contemporary art forms.
Tim Gardner was born in Iowa City in 1973 and grew up in Canada. Since the late nineties, Gardner’s paintings, drawings, and lithographs have explored a specifically North American middle-class world of masculinity and the photographic conventions used to document it. His source material comprises snapshots, either found or taken by the artist, which capture the rites of passage in which his subjects partake. His early watercolors render in exacting detail the amateur photography taken by his brothers to chronicle the drunken exploits of their friends. In his recent works in both pastel and watercolor, Gardner portrays contemporary male subjects amid sublime nature, inspiring comparisons to Romantics like Caspar David Friedrich. Gardner’s paintings have been exhibited worldwide with group and solo shows. (src. Guggenheim Museum Collection Online)
Artist’s statement: One of the architectural quirks of certain cities on the eastern seaboard of the U.S. is the solo row house. Standing alone, in some of the worst neighborhoods, these nineteenth century structures were once attached to similar row houses that made up entire city blocks. Time and major demographic changes have resulted in the decay and demolition of many such blocks of row houses. Occasionally, one house is spared - literally cut off from its neighbors and left to the elements with whatever time it has left.
"My interest in these solitary buildings is not only in their ghostly beauty but in their odd, almost defiant, placement in the urban landscape. Often three stories high, they were clearly not designed to stand alone like this. Many details that might not be noticed in a homogeneous row of twenty attached row houses become apparent when everything else has been torn down. And then there’s the lingering question of why a single row house was allowed to remain upright. Still retaining traces of its former glory, the last house standing is often still occupied."