Category Archives: Graphic Design

Color

Color notation 3, Diane LachmanColor notation 3, painting by Diane Lachman

Color Collaborations, Muse Gallery, Kathryn Lee, Diane Lachman, Deann Mills

Muse Gallery, 52 N 2nd St in Old City Philadelphia, invites you to their October exhibition Color Collaborations. Three colorist: Kathryn Lee, Diane Lachman and Deann Mills will exhibit paper collages, watercolors and oils from October 5- 30, 2017

The public is invited to First Friday on October 7, 5- 9 PM. There will be an Artists’ Reception on Sunday, October 16, 2- 4 pm which is free and open to the public, Muse gallery is participating in Philadelphia Open Studio Tour (POST) on Saturday October 22 and Sunday October 23 from noon to 6 pm, Meet the Artists on Saturday, October 22 from 2-5 pm.

Gallery hours are Wednesday through Sunday, 12- 5 pm and by appointment.

Kathryn Lee “My recent paper collages echo the bas reliefs that I loved when I lived in Italy with their interplay of light and shadow. About the same time, I discovered Johannes Itten’s theories on color. I found that there was an order to color just like music. It was intensely freeing to play with color with confidence, both using and not using the rules. These two concepts transformed my approach to art.”

Diane Lachman “Color mood, relationships and memory are my subjects. It takes time and experience to see the subtle variations, but after studying and teaching this subject, I make these distinctions naturally, like breathing. In my recent paintings, geometric forms create tension with the transparent fluidity of the watercolor.”

Deann Mills “Color is a different language, a way of seeing and being surprised.  For me, painting is about the relationships and accidents that happen with color, and the joy of always experimenting and discovering something new. For more information,

contact http://www.musegalleryphiladelphia.com/

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Vlisco

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global StagePrinted Textile, 2005. Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, founded 1846. Cotton plain weave, wax‑resist print, 12 feet × 47 1/2 inches (365.8 × 120.7 cm). Private Collection, ©Vlisco

Creative Africa, Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage, Philadelphia Museum of Art

Through January 22, 2017

Ruth and Raymond G. Perelman Building

The Philadelphia Museum of Art celebrates West and Central African fashion and culture in an exhibition exploring the classic and contemporary looks of Vlisco, the oldest international textile brand that specializes in Dutch wax fabrics. From the earliest designs and most recognizable patterns, continuing through a selection of iconic styles that have been re-interpreted in a contemporary way, the exhibition will highlight a selection of the thousands of patterns Vlisco has produced for the African and diaspora markets.

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global StagePrinted Textile, 2005. Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, founded 1846. Cotton plain weave, wax‑resist print, 12 feet × 47 1/2 inches (365.8 × 120.7 cm). Private Collection, ©Vlisco

Dilys Blum, The Museum’s Jack M. and Annette Y. Friedland Senior Curator of Costume and Textiles and organizer of this exhibition, said: “The wax-printed fabrics long associated with Central and West Africa have a surprising history that is truly global.  Many of the patterns shown in this display tell stories and convey images that reflect Africa’s past and reimagine its future. For this special presentation in Philadelphia, we are celebrating the transnational character of Vlisco by showing the company’s classic designs, these classics re-imagined, and new contemporary patterns, sharing how fashion designers in West Africa and other parts of the world use Vlisco wax fabrics today.”

When cloth leaves the factory it is generally identified only by a stock number. The women who trade in the open-air markets in African cities, and their customers, assign the patterns names inspired by current events, politics, religion, and material culture. The exhibition explores the ways in which such patterns acquire social meaning, status, and value and become culturally assimilated into African society, and examine how designs can have many interpretations depending on where they are used.

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global StagePrinted Textile, Late 20th century. Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, founded 1846. Cotton plain weave, wax‑resist print, 36 × 47 1/2 inches (91.4 × 120.7 cm). Private Collection, © Vlisco

Among the classic patterns represented are the “Happy Family” egg motif, featuring an image of a hen surrounded by her chicks and chicks-to-be referencing the importance of family, and the “Fallen Tree” pattern that acts as a visual substitute for a proverb that teaches unity and strength in Ghana. The “Alphabet” design symbolizes the value that Africans place on education, and “Swallows”, a symbol of good luck, refers to the transience of riches. The classic “Swallows” pattern was worn by flight attendants for Air Afrique in the 1970s. The display will show how this particular pattern has been reinterpreted to include airplane imagery, a symbol of globalization.

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage“La Famille” Printed Textile, 1952. Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, founded 1846. Cotton plain weave, wax‑resist print, 18 feet × 47 1/4 inches (548.6 × 120 cm). Private Collection, © Vlisco

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage“Angelina” Printed Textile, 1962. Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, founded 1846. Cotton plain weave, wax‑resist print, 70 × 48 1/4 inches (177.8 × 122.6 cm). Private Collection, © Vlisco

The “Eye” pattern, one of the most enduring European designs for the African market, appears in the exhibition in multiple variations and colors.  The original design of 1904 by the Haarlem Cotton Company was inspired by the Egyptian god Horus, a symbol of protection, royal power, and good health.  Some of the eye patterns were intended to silently communicate and identify with a woman’s family and marital relationships.  In Nigeria, the original Haarlem pattern is known as “Eyes”. In Côte d’Ivoire, it is called “Bull’s Eye” and is worn by a woman to show a man that she desires him.  Also in Côte d’Ivoire, the classic “Jumping Horse” pattern expresses rivalry between co-wives.  In Nigeria, Igbo women favor this design for family to express unity at their annual women’s meeting.

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global StageDazzling Graphics Collection, 2011, Made by Vlisco, Helmond, Netherlands, Photograph courtesy of Vlisco

The exhibition will touch upon the rise of the most successful market women in Togo, called the Nana Benz, who traded in wax prints beginning in the 1930s. The Nana Benz were essential to the success or failure of the designs.  Wholesalers to other market traders, the women provided Vlisco agents with information on customer preferences. In return, the women were often given exclusive access to certain designs.  A playful design featuring the Mercedes-Benz three-pointed star logo pays homage to these traders, as this was their car of choice and became a symbol of their success.  In another design, the Vlisco logo on the radiator grill replaces the car’s original trademark. 

Displayed on mannequins in the center of the gallery is an installation of contemporary designs using the wax fabrics as created by African, diaspora and other international designers. 

One of Nigeria’s foremost fashion designers, Lanre da Silva Ajayi, who is known for her ultra-feminine looks and elegant use of prints, has collaborated with Vlisco on numerous projects including a gala dress on view in the exhibition.  The designer’s ensemble is made in a limited-edition shimmering gold print embellished with the designer’s signature beads and sequins.

Owner and creative director Araba Stephens Akompi of the Ghanaian fashion house Stylista has reconfigured patterns showing a Spanish fan to create a flamenco-style dress with a distinctively African twist. Stylista sees this gala dress as an evolution of the traditional Ghanaian blouse with a matching skirt.

The exhibition features ensembles by Vlisco’s senior fashion designer from 2008 to 2016, Inge van Lierop, who was responsible for translating each seasonal concept into stylish ensembles used for marketing. A strapless, two-piece wedding dress made from two color ways of the same design is embellished with beads, as is the veil, which was embroidered in India. Deconstructed and made into a late 1960s-style mini dress that pays homage to the decade when the design first achieved popularity, the classic “Angelina” pattern associated with the dashiki a loose tunic worn by men and women is updated and re-colored in luminous pastels for a more contemporary look.

The fashions of Manish Arora, one of today’s most inspiring designers, fuse his Indian roots, global style, and contemporary popular culture.  This year, Arora has collaborated with Vlisco for his ready-to-wear collection shown recently in Paris and inspired by the American West.  For his ensemble on display, he has re-interpreted wax prints into knit fabrics. 

Ikiré Jones of Philadelphia, led by Nigerian-American menswear designer, Walé Oyéjidé, shows how the designs can be creatively cut and mixed together for unique looks.  His  hand-tailored trousers, and a jacket made of Vlisco fabric, are accessorized with a storytelling scarf.

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage

Vlisco: African Fashion on a Global Stage is one of five exhibitions in the Perelman Building this season, accompanied by related programs that feature a broad spectrum of the arts from across the African continent. They feature historical works of art as well as contemporary fashion, photography, design, and architecture. Each calls attention to the continuities and differences between African art forms over the centuries.

The related exhibitions are:

Look Again: Contemporary Perspectives on African Art, a major exhibition drawn from the collection of the Penn Museum (May 14 through December 4, 2016).

Threads of Tradition, focusing on the traditional patterns in West and Central African textiles and the techniques used to create them, including strip weaving, resist dyeing, piecing, appliqué, and embroidery (Through January 2017).

The Architecture of Francis Kéré: Building for Community, featuring a site-specific, immersive environment designed by this world-renowned Burkina-Faso-born architect (May 14–September 25, 2016).

Three Photographers/Six Cities presents an in-depth look at three photographers who create powerful pictures of African cities: Cairo, Egypt; Nairobi, Kenya; Lagos, Nigeria; Johannesburg, South Africa; Bamako, and Tombouctou (Timbuktu), Mali. From Akinbode Akinbiyi’s observation of urban centers and Seydou Camara’s examination of Islamic manuscripts to Ananias Léki Dago’s pictures of offbeat locales, the images offer unique perspectives on contemporary African experience (Through September 25, 2016).

Curator: Dilys Blum, The Jack M. and Annette Y. Friedland Senior Curator of Costume and Textiles

Location: Joan Spain Gallery

About Vlisco

Vlisco, founded in 1846, began exporting factory printed cloth to West Africa around 1876. Over the years Vlisco absorbed several Dutch textile manufacturers that also produced wax prints for the market prior to World War I. Today it is the last surviving European wax-resist textile manufacturer. The Vlisco brand is manufactured in Helmond, Netherlands and is the premier brand of the Vlisco group which includes three other brands, GTP and Woodin made in Ghana and Uniwax produced in Cote d’Ivoire. Each brand caters to a distinct segment of the market.

Social Media: #CreativeAfrica 

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The Philadelphia Museum of Art is Philadelphia’s art museum. We are a landmark building. A world-renowned collection. A place that welcomes everyone. We bring the arts to life, inspiring visitors—through scholarly study and creative play—to discover the spirit of imagination that lies in everyone. We connect people with the arts in rich and varied ways, making the experience of the Museum surprising, lively, and always memorable. We are committed to inviting visitors to see the world—and themselves—anew through the beauty and expressive power of the arts.

Thank you to The Philadelphia Museum of Art for the content of this post.

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Like

Kyle Confehr, GUSH Gallery

Kyle Confehr,  Just Because, Like, Gush Gallery, Jinxed West Philly

Gush Gallery co-founders Stephanie Slate and Sarah Thielke are pleased to announce the opening of artist Kyle Confehr’s Just Because, Like exhibition on July 2, 2016 at Jinxed (4521 Baltimore Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19143) from 5:00 – 8:00pm.

Kyle Confehr’s ink on neon paper drawings focus on the absurdity of modern language, social media, irony, consumerism, and the passivity of modern culture. Reminiscent of 1980s New York City street graffiti culture and the political and pop art of Keith Haring, Confehr’s new drawings in Just Because, Like encourages, and often demands, the complete attention and involvement of the viewer. Through small details and images hidden throughout the work, in an almost seek and find game fashion, and coupled with the clichéd modern phrases and text speak, Kyle Confehr presents a commentary on the social media-ness of the world we live in.

Free beer and snacks at the opening reception! The exhibition runs through the end of the month at Jinxed West Philly.

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Machines

The Artistry of Slot Machines, Visual and Aural CuesThe Artistry of Slot Machines

Following years of disappointing revenue, news that Philadelphia’s SugarHouse Casino is set to expand have emerged. The expansion is expected to add to the number of total games being offered by the casino, which in turn should allow more people to experience the artistry of slot machines.

As humans, we are creatures that are compelled by visual and aural cues, which is why casinos are often lit with bright flashy lights, ringing with bells and an assortment of other sounds. However, if there was one sense that overpowered the other on the casino floor, it would be sight.

 As Bally Technologies’ Corporate Communications manager Mike Trask said, “When you walk through a casino… you look for something that looks interesting. A player either looks for a game they like or for something that’s appealing visually”.

The imagery depicted on slot machines is crucial in terms of attracting players. Although people find familiarity in the three-reeled slot machines with falling images of fruits, gold bars and dollar signs, gamblers need more entertainment visually in order for them to be convinced of placing more bets. Illustrations have gone digital and now slot machines are utilizing video screens for impeccable graphic design. Video slots have become so popular that Total Gold, the newest player in the online casino scene, has taken to featuring various themed slots like Gonzo’s Quest, Bloodlines, and Spellcast, all with a unique look and feel.

Some themes and artistic designs have resonated over others, and when it comes to graphic design, science is just as much at play as art is. Gamblers have shown a greater preference towards the ocean-themed machines not only because of the high definition skeumorphic graphical user interface, but also because of the color blue ignites feelings of inner peace and security. There are a number of components in the provision of artwork for slot machines. In a way, graphic designers specifically for casino gaming technologies have a more difficult time in art development than other artists, since these graphic designers have to produce an interface that is prominent yet it’s still attempting to appeal to the entire crowd.

The simplicity of the three-reeled slot machine is still pulling patrons in, but now that more casinos are filled with video casino games, players are gaining appeal for higher quality playing with games like the Avatar-themed slot machines. You may not notice the impact of the slot machine artwork at first, yet you will once you realize that you’ve been sitting at the machine for several hours.

The Artistry of Slot Machines‘ is a contributed blog post.

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In Reverse

Terri Fridkin, MUSE GalleryMy Better Half, monoprint by Terri FridkinMUSE Gallery

“Local printmaker Terri Fridkin will be having her first solo show entitled In Reverse at MUSE Gallery, 52 N. 2nd Street in Old City Philadelphia from October 1 through November 2, 2014. The public is invited to a First Friday Reception on October 3, 5- 7 PM and an Artist’s Reception on Saturday, October 18, 3- 5 PM.  She will also be participating in POST, Philadelphia Open Studio Tour on Saturday and Sunday, October 25 and 26, from noon until 5 PM.

Terri Fridkin is a National Honor Society Graduate of Drexel University Nesbitt College of Design Arts. She worked in the industry for many years and took classes in different media, finally finding herself in a printmaking class. This fueled her lifelong passion for art so she left work to devote more time to fulfill this dream, studying printmaking at various studios and art centers in Pennsylvania and New York.

Since exhibiting her work in 2012, Terri Fridkin has been in numerous invitational and juried shows. Selected exhibitions include Woodmere Art Museum, The State Museum of Pennsylvania, City Hall in Philadelphia, Widener University and various art centers and diverse venues in the tristate area. Terri is a member of MUSE Gallery, The American Color Print Society, and The Cheltenham Guild of Printmakers. Her work is in private collections in New York and Pennsylvania.

Her design background and years of meticulous and precise renderings have influenced her current work. Structure, pattern, line, and color, are the underpinnings of her prints. They provide discipline and a comforting sense of order to counteract the uncertainty and chaos that exists in our world today.

Terri Fridkin’s fascination with printmaking is influenced by the fusion of techniques along with the spontaneous and intuitive creative process. Each hand-pulled layer is formed by the previous one, which dictates the next, as the composition develops a strong graphic imagery. This is achieved by using multiple plates and matrices with transparent and opaque layers of soy-based inks, her medium of choice, along with water based inks, and acrylics. Experimentation, invention, and discovery are the driving forces that inspire her.”

POST, Philadelphia Open Studio Tours, a program of The Center for Emerging Visual Artists is the largest tour of artist studios and creative work spaces in the region, and one of the premier open studio tour events in the country. Each October, the Tours span 20 unique Philadelphia neighborhoods, feature over 300 participants, engage very large audiences As an annual Fall festival of visual art, The Philadelphia Open Studio Tours includes self guided tours of artist studios and related creative work spaces, gallery exhibitions, demonstrations and workshops, artist talks, receptions, and guided tours.

Linda Dubin Garfield
printmaker/mixed media artist/blogger
610.649.3174
www.lindadubingarfield.com
www.smARTbusinessconsulting.org
www.artsisters.org
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The ART of Travel – www.lindadubingarfield.blogspot.com
www.toooldtodieyoungblog.wordpress.com
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