Posts Tagged ‘kenya’

Artist of the moment…..photographer Peter Beard

Nick Brandt is a contemporary American photographer renown for his images of the animals of Africa and for working in a collage method. Nick Brandt was born in the year 1938 in New York City. As a child the artist starting keeping diaries. In terms of the art world now, Brandt was a scrapbook master from an early age and starting taking pictures to include in his diary. Brandt began his diaries at the age of twelve.

Below a great interview with the artist. Again we see the use of oil paint with photographs similar to George Woodman and Nobuyoshi Araki:

For his artistic education Brandt attended Yale University studying art with the great Joseph Albers. Albers’ style was a mix of blending an outstanding sense of color with geometric shapes. Below an example of Albers’ style.


After graduating from Yale the artist moved to Africa and bought a place called Hog’s Ranch located in Kenya. Beard first went to Africa when he was seventeen years of age. Beard is quite fond of animal life in Africa and has tried to raise awareness of the poaching of elephants and rhinos. Beard even worked at the Tsavo National Park in Kenya. Beard has published books showing his work in this genre.

Beard also is a fashion photographer and in this clip we see some behind the scenes action from a calendar work by the artist.

In 1996 he received massage injuries whilst shooting some elephants. He was trampled by them. In the process Beard broke several ribs and his pelvic bone. The accident was even caught on film which is below. It isn’t as gruesome as I thought it might be,

The artist has worked with many other artists on collaborative work. Below is an example of his work with Andy Warhol:


Beard splits time in New York City and his Kenyan estate.

Price range information: Most works range from $8,000 to $80,000. Works at auction have broken the $600,000 mark.

If you enjoy this artist be sure and check out the work of Nick Brandt.


Artist of the moment…..Wangechi Mutu…

Wangechi Mutu comes from Nairobi, Kenya which is located in Africa. She is known for her very elaborate collage and painting works which usually depict a person. I would say her style is Surrealism but done in a very modern way. A mixture of Hughie Lee Smith and Bev Doolittle. I have profiled Hughie Lee Smith before and he was the most prominent African American Surrealist painter. Below is an great example of his style.


Below is a clip showing works by Wangechi Mutu. Pay attention to the subtleties of her work. Look closely at the nose, it may be a leg. She is very creative in her portrayal of the female figure.

Another great selection of works by the artist.

Price range info:  Mutu has worked in acrylics which range from $25,000 to $135,000. Ink works range from $50,000 to $385,000.

Bev Doolittle’s work I am sure most viewers have seen at least one time in their life. She paints forests and landscapes but with hidden faces painted out of rocks and woodpiles. I enjoy Doolittle’s work as she has fabulous compositions which become necessary if you are trying to paint a face, but by using the various lights and darks of trees and rocks. Everything has to be place just so to make sense, but not so much that it looks is if the artist tried too hard. The image seems to have appeared “magically.”

Below is a great example of how Doolittle cleverly mixes land, snow, and horses in a very unique way from a composition standpoint.

Bev Doolittle 50

In her famous collages Wangechi Mutu uses a many materials such as medical illustrations, fashion magazine clips, pornography, glitter, and beads. She enjoys placing a variety of patterned textures in her figures.

The artist first came to the United States when she was nineteen yeras old. For her collegiate studies Mutu attended the  Cooper Union School for the Advancement of Arts and Sciences in New York city graduating in 1996. Mutu went on to earn a masters degree from Yale University.

Mutu has been part of several prestigious at locations such as the San Francisco Museum of Art, the Tate Modern in London, and the Studio Musuem located in Brooklyn, New York.

Wangechi Mutu now lives and works out of New York city.

This artist always fascinates me with her Surrealistic outlook of the world. She can take trash and found objects and transform them into works of magic! She is very inspirational and her characters are all very unique and whimsical.