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September 2021

Painting on Trash to Reveal Nature

Here is a fascinating art project by artist Mariah Reading as reported in Atlas Obscura.

MReading_Flipping Out

Mariah Reading uses unique canvases for her paintings. When the nomadic park ranger and frequent artist-in-residence finds lost objects and trash while adventuring in state and national parks across America, she paints the surrounding landscape on the item, highlighting waste and showcasing the beauty of the protected areas. She has captured the morning light flooding through the gaps between redwood trees at Big Sur on a lost Croc, mimicked the steep cliffs of Channel Islands National Park on a flipper, and—on a forgotten helmet—depicted riotously colorful fall leaves wreathing the banks of a placid lake in Acadia National Park.

When she’s done painting, she photographs her art in front of the landscape that inspired it. Often, it’s hard to tell where reality ends and the painting begins. Reading’s series is a project several years in the making. While she was studying visual arts at Bowdoin College, she took a mold-making class that required students to cook up large vats of concrete and rubber to create molds. The installations they’d in term craft, ended up generating vast amounts of waste: Each brush that touched the rubber needed to be tossed, as the material couldn’t be washed down the drain.


The Pandemic Has Brought Us Some Amazing Street Art

IMG_6470I have seen evidence of this on the streets of NYC but this article in OZY sums it up nicely --

Street Art

Empty city streets served as the perfect canvas for many artists during the pandemic while galleries were shuttered. Some, such as Steve Derrick in New York, painted paeans to frontline workers. Others used their art to mock politicians or simply to lighten the general mood. U.K.-based street artist John D’oh used a Bristol wall to paint an image mocking former U.S. President Donald Trump’s comment about injecting disinfectant to stop COVID-19, while Australian street artist LUSHSUX depicted Chinese President Xi Jinping in a hazmat suit saying: “Nothing to see. Carry on.” Dominican Republic-based Jesus Cruz Artiles, also known as Eme Freethinker, painted a picture of Gollum from The Lord of the Rings cradling a roll of toilet paper and saying, “My Precious!” In Atlanta, artists such as Fabian Williams made huge face masks from white vinyl sheets and used them to cover murals of icons like Martin Luther King Jr. in an awareness-raising campaign for the Black community.