• Final_books

    Bookshelf: Paul Burgess

Graphic Design

Bookshelf: Paul Burgess

Posted by Bryony Quinn,

Here we have the Bookshelf of Paul Burgess who, in his sweeping career, knocks over writer, photographer, illustrator and artist as he goes by (and by). His selections are a dedicated mix of informed works surrounding his own practice, citations for a personal manifesto and an image-heavy celebration of that most significant of tools, found imagery. Drawing on all aforementioned creative accomplishments, it’s a reading list that also reflects his present station as an educator and a voice of the illustrating community.

The End of Living – The Beginning of Survival Dash Snow

First off, we have the Jim Morrison of collage, Dash Snow. Dead aged 27 from a drug overdose, Dash was an American photographer, artist and lager than life collage genius.

I discovered this book, Dash Snow: The End of Living – The Beginning of Survival published by Contemporary Fine Arts (CFA Gallery) Berlin 2007, in a Berlin bookshop. I immediately fell in love with the raw, punk attitude. Each collage and many of his Polaroids in particular, allow you a glimpse of urban American youth culture. Politics, nihilism, and détournement all feature heavily in the work here.

The collages depict scenes of sex, drug taking, violence and art-world pretense with candor. Some of Snow’s later collage-based work was characterised by his practice of using his own semen as a material applied to or splashed across newspaper photographs of police officers and Saddam Hussein’s face. His use of newspaper headlines, found ephemera and bodily fluids all come together to form the ‘hardest’ collage work since John Heartfield.
www.amazon.co.uk/end-of-living…

Found Photos Dick Jewell

One of my all time favourites. In 1978, the young British artist Dick Jewell self-published a small book Found Photos, a collection of photo booth images that had been mutilated, thrown away or torn up by the people featured in the photographs. Most of the images in this small, but perfectly formed book, had been left to rot on the top (or behind) photo booth machines from 1968 to the mid 1970’s. You get to see lovers kissing, dazed expressions caught in the flash, 1970’s hairstyles galore, old age pensioners and cheeky teenagers all preening for the camera, and then all strangely discarded (maybe in rage or contempt?) and ready for Dick Jewell to find and then publish in this slice of real life Britain. These people are not models, they are you or me.
In a world where all we have now are boring ‘digital photo booths’, this is a potent reminder of how an advance in technology does not necessarily bring aesthetic beauty.
www.dickjewell.com/found-photos…

700 Centenboek Jos Houweling

I found this book on a secondhand book stall in Amsterdam in the 1980’s. It has the is made up of many small black and white photos of similar objects. Page after page of manhole covers, plastic toys, mailboxes, dog turds, window boxes, park benches vending machines, you name it, it’s here.

The 700 CENTENBOEK was published to commemorate the 700th birthday of the city of Amsterdam. It was sold at cost price, 700 cents, or seven guilders, and can be seen as a birthday present for all the inhabitants of Amsterdam from an institution which had an important part to play in the city’s financial life. Published by Gemeentegiro (Municipal Giro) the city’s postal system.

The subject of this book is mainly those humble street adornments that you would usually pass without noticing, but which have altogether more character than the canal houses, tulips and clogs, that Amsterdam is more famous for. The author, Jos Houweling, was not a professional photographer. His approach is simple and direct, he just wanted to record everyday objects as they really are.
www.boekenwebsite.nl/700-centenboek

Bamn: Outlaw Manifestos and Ephemera 1965-70’ Edited by Peter Stansill and David Zane Mairowitz

A paperback almost certainly owned by Malcolm McLaren and Bernie Rhodes as they plotted to overthrow tedious rock music in 1975/76. As the first image in this book, from the King Mob Echo, states ‘We are Outlaws, we are the forces of Chaos and Anarchy’.

This anthology contains a wealth of ephemera produced by many of the radical groups of the time, from the Black Panthers, the Yippies, English Situationists and the Women’s Liberation Movement. The major part of the material included here derives from the United States, England and Holland, the major centres of ‘dropped-out’ consciousness. No one political stance is adopted in these pages, but the book is essential for understanding the depth and range of protest and call to action within the counter culture of that decade. Here are many of the essential posters, leaflets and newspapers from the angry 1960’s. We all need a manifesto to live by, now more than ever. By any means necessary . . . .
www.ebay.co.uk/Bamn…

Playing with Matches Beck Hansen and Al Hansen

Playing With Matches is the first book published that collects together Beck and Al Hansen’s mixed media collages, assemblages, drawings and photographs. Dirty bikers, found thrift store photographs, trash and Hershey bar wrappers are all here. If you though Beck Hansen was just a recording artist, then think again. He is a pretty good visual artist also, working with collage since he was a child.

In the late 1980s and early 90s Beck Hansen made several trips to Europe to visit his grandfather, the Fluxus/Happenings artist Al Hansen, who resided in Cologne. Since the early 1970s Beck and Al shared an informal exchange of ideas that was the catalyst for their respective engagements with images, words and sound/performance.

Working with the ordinary detritus of consumer society, and turning the images back on themselves to better evaluate their contrived beauty. Like ‘two turntables and a microphone’, the audio equivalent of his cut-and-paste collages, Beck celebrates the potential of the imperfect, discarded and reclaimed image. Oh to have a grandfather like this . . .
www.alhansen.net
www.amazon.co.uk/playing-matches…

Portrait9

Posted by Bryony Quinn

Bryony was It’s Nice That’s first ever intern and worked her way up to assistant online editor before moving on to pursue other interests in the summer of 2012.

Most Recent: Art View Archive

  1. List

    The Dutch/Brazilian artist Rafaël Rozendaal is best known for his digital artworks that often take the form of webpages but as he told us at our 2013 creative symposium Here he is increasingly interested in exploring his fascination with light and colour in real-world scenarios. Most recently this has taken the form of his hyper-colourful abstract lenticular paintings, which are made up of layers of different frames and so appear to move when viewed from different angles.

  2. List

    There’s a wonderful, undulating beauty to Alain Delorme’s series that initially tricks the viewer into thinking they’re seeing flocks of starlings choreographing themselves against iridescent skies. On closer inspection though, rather than capturing mass avian movements the Parisian photographer has replaced them with a myriad of plastic bags.

  3. List

    Way back in 2011 when we first posted the work of Frank Magnotta It’s Nice That was a very different beast – we’d only give you one image to check out and the rest was up to you. So when I stumbled across Frank’s work again this week it seemed essential that we show you a whole lot more. To be honest there have been few updates to his site in the past three years but the work is breathtaking, pulling together pop culture references, architectural precision and some serious Americana and combining it into stark surrealist landscapes. At times grotesque but always engaging, Frank’s graphite artworks are still some of the finest around.

  4. List

    Jean Jullien is many things. Artist. Illustrator. French. Recent emigre to New York. It’s Nice That favourite. So hot right now. He’s also the final artist to have a show at Kemistry Gallery’s current east London home before it closes its doors early next year (although as has been reported it has some excitingly ambitious plans).

  5. List

    American artist James Rieck paints models, but not in the way you might expect. In his huge colourful canvases he takes figures from adverts and recreates them four or five feet wide, capturing their clothes, their postures but not their faces.

  6. List

    These painted scenes from Paige Jiyoung Moon are so wonderfully intricate, a new detail pops out each time you see them. Capturing domestic scenes like people drinking coffee, friends watching a film or a family eating lunch together, it’s the mundanity of what Paige paints that makes her miniature worlds so inviting as the viewer tries to pick out some sort of irregularity.

  7. List

    It’s been a whole two years since we last posted about the marvellous work of Lynnie Zulu and we’re happy to have the illustrator’s vibrant world colouring our dull Monday once again. Her latest body of work is on show now at No Walls Gallery in Brighton and is a fantastically lively exploration of the female in all her glorious forms.

  8. List-tatiana-bruni_-the-drunkard_-costume-design-for-%e2%80%98the-bolt%e2%80%99_-1931_-courtesy-grad-and-st-petersburg-museum-of-theatre-and-music

    We’re no ballet aficionados, but we wouldn’t usually associate drunkards, typists and factory workers with the grace and poise of the discipline. However, as these beautiful gouache painting by Tatiana Bruni show, there’s much more to ballet than tutus and swan lake, with her angular figures, bold colours and sometimes grotesquely postured characters. The paintings show costume designs for Dmitri Shostakovich’s 1931 ballet The Bolt, and are going on show at London’s Gallery for Russian Arts and Design alongside a series of period photographs. The ballet itself was bold and striking in its use of real hammers, machine-inspired choreography, aerobics and acrobatics, and the costume images are equally as dynamic, inspired by “the aesthetics of agit-theatre and artist-designed propaganda posters”, according to the gallery. The sense of movement is palpable, whether in the graceful billowing dresses or the staggering legs of our brightly-coloured drunkard, working against the geometric rigidity of the style to beautiful effect.

  9. List

    The announcement that David Lynch is to release new episodes of Twin Peaks in 2016 was, unsurprisingly, met with internet-breaking levels of excitement. Soon, every Tommy, Dale and Henry Spencer was walking around their independent coffee shop knowingly harping on about their “damn fine cup of coffee” and popping that heartbreaking Angelo Badalamenti theme on the office stereo like they’d actually watched every episode back in 1990, when they were five.

  10. List-studio9

    Not since we saw the Doge meme IRL on a street in Hackney have we been this excited by the face of a strange dog. Now, we’re excited by many strange dog faces, thanks to what looks set to be a brilliant show by Wilfrid Wood. Wilfrid’s work has long been a favourite at It’s Nice That, and has over the years included sculptures of Tom Daley and Paul McCartney and numerous bottoms for Levis.

  11. List-31_wl-work-01

    Man of many talents Will Edmonds has some great new work on his site in the geometric shape of these colourful framed pieces and paintings on wood. There’s a childlike simplicity against a more grown-up restraint in the works, which draw you in with colour and keep you there with the deceptively intricate layers. The works were created for an exhibition entitled A Watery Line at The Tetley in Leeds in summer 2014, where he was also showing sculptures and ceramics.

  12. List

    London is a brilliant city, but in the winter months it can be a grey and grizzly place to live. That’s why artists like Steve Wheen, aka The Pothole Gardner, are so important in bringing a little colour and joy to our day-to-day lives. To promote Uniqlo’s new HEATTECH range, which has been specially developed with leading textile manufacturer Toray, the clothing brand is showcasing creative types who take on the urban outdoors come rain or shine, from foodies and cyclists to graffiti artists.

  13. List

    I can’t quite believe that it’s two years since we last featured Alex Roulette’s work on the site because he’s undoubtedly one of our favourite artists working today. The New York based painter creates scenes which “explore the blurred sense of time and place within memories” and he’s a master of the atmospheric. Looking at his paintings feels like beginning a dream when you’re pitched into a situation conjured up by your subconscious and yet instinctively know broadly where you are and what’s going on.