Maria Rubinke Extreme Porcelain

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Usually when someone works in porcelain, they are trying to follow traditional methods. Artist Maria Rubinke adds a twisted turn to her work pushing what is acceptable in the world of art.

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Currently based out of Copenhagen, Denmark, Maria Rubinke blends innocence with grotesque in her work, creating porcelain sculptures with shocking streams of red glaze originating from rips and tears in their bodies. She uses a mixture of cute and surreal to pull people between these extreme opposites.

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Most vintage or Victorian porcelain dolls are delicate and beautiful. She doesn’t do that. The children have innocent faces, but are completely twisted. The portrayals in Maria’s sculptures bring to mind the work of Edward Gorey, the American artist and writer known for illustrated books depicting unsettling scenes in Edwardian settings.

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She doesn’t yet have her own website, (although it is in progress),  but you can check out more of her work on her Facebook page.

https://www.facebook.com/rubinke?fref=ts

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Ray Caesar Surrealist

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Ray Caesar is one of the most notable digital artists of our time. He is also the mind behind some of the most disturbing surrealist art.  He is a Toronto-based artist with works that have been in high demand over the past decade. Caesar is unapologetic about being a digital artist in an art world that sometimes sneers at using the computer for creating fine-art.

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Caesar’s portraits usually include abnormality and fantasy in a dismal setting of sexual suggestions. His works captivate some and turn others away. Onlookers have described his work as both grotesque and beautiful at the same time. Besides being a gifted dream-weaver, he is without a doubt one of the most influential surrealist artists of our day.

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http://www.raycaesar.com/

LaLaurie Mansion in New Orleans

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Marie Delphine Lalaurie and her third husband, a doctor, Leonard Louis Lalaurie, purchased the home at 1140 Royal Street in the early 1830s. A renowned Voodoo Queen named Marie Laveau lived just a few blocks from the Lalaurie House. Although the nature of their relationship is unknown, undoubtedly these two women met and knew each other.

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The legend goes that in the LaLaurie household, slaves disappeared on a regular basis. No questions were ever asked. Then on April 11, 1834, a slave provoked by the abuse piled upon her, set fire to the Lalaurie’s kitchen.

While trying to save items from the house, someone began whispering that servants were chained and locked up behind barred doors and would die in the fire. They searched the house  busting down the locked door to the attic. Madame LaLaurie had renovated the large room into a torture chamber of sorts where hideous procedures had been performed on many of the slaves.

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Word spread among the people of New Orleans and the LaLauries fled when a lynch mob formed. Some people found evidence that they had fled across Lake Pontchartrain and lived there, while others say she went from there to France, escaping in a horse and buggy on the night of the fire.

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delphine_LaLaurie

American Horror Story: Coven

A cluster of rats

At once beautiful and a little bit strange, this wonderful carving of a cluster of rats is actually a tiny (4 cm in diameter) ivory netsuke, made in Japan in the late nineteenth or early twentieth century, and now part of the Japanese Art collection in LACMA. Netsuke are miniature sculptures invented in 17th century Japan as a toggle to secure a small pouch or container to the sash of a kimono. Although first produced to fulfill a utilitarian function, they evolved into objects of impressive craftsmanship which reflected many aspects of Japanese culture. As the first animal of the Chinese zodiac (which was adopted in Japan around 600 AD), rats (nezumi) were a popular motif in netsuke carving, which, according to the British Museum, were given as gifts to people born in the Year of the Rat. White rats in particular were seen as lucky in old Japan, believed to be a messenger of Daikoku, one of the seven gods of luck.