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From the Royal Court to @TabloidArtHistory: social media’s influence on art criticism

Jerry-saltz-hans-ulrich-obrist-tabloid-art-history-renoir-sucks-at-painting-art-itsnicethatheader
List32343978_212698286003288_6565516982689464320_n Work / Art Artist Ricardo Passaporte on falling in "love at first sight" with Lidl

When Lidl opened close to my house at the beginning of the year everything changed. Suddenly luxury foodstuffs available only to people for whom ‘supper’ is a legitimate meal – think potted crab, fancy crackers and walnut oil – were available on my meagre freelancer’s wage. Now I could rock up to a friend’s house proffering a bounty of Highland black pudding, panna cotta or buffalo mozzarella, rather than the cheapest wine in the shop and some mystery meat-flavoured crisps. I had arrived.

Kristintexiera-art-it'snicethat-list Work / Art Kristin Texeira’s abstract paintings recall the essence of moments through colour

Kristin Texeira’s abstract paintings pay “homage to the past”, by recalling the “essence of moments through colour”. Kristin paints to remember; she wants to “provide proof — for myself and others — of existing in certain moments in time”. “Without art, I don’t know how else you would hold onto memories”, the artist tells It’s Nice That, and it’s through painting that she keeps her past alive.

List-img Work / Art Strip clubs and bordellos: Tal R’s hypnotic paintings of sex shops from around the world

“For 10 years I tried to escape art. I thought I was no good at it. I thought it was pretentious,” Tal R admits during a phone call with It’s Nice That; “I tried to give up on art but art didn’t give up on me.” From London’s Victoria Miro gallery to Copenhagen’s Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Tal R’s artworks have toured the globe. Sexshop is Tal’s long-term project, which saw the painter visit strip clubs and bordellos across the world, transforming their facades into an emulsion of mesmerising shapes and rich colours.

List Features / Art From the Royal Court to @TabloidArtHistory: social media’s influence on art criticism

“When I was growing up everyone would read Artforum,Jerry Saltz tells me over the phone. Jerry is a senior art critic at New York Magazine, the winner of this year’s Pulitzer Prize for art criticism and an avid social media user with over a million followers across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. “I, of course, never understood a single word that was in there. But that was what was cool. So that was what I read.”

List_kissi_ussuki_yellow_coat_724 Work / Illustration Vilnius-based illustrator Kissi Ussuki on her love affair with the colour pink

Sometimes creativity thrives best under limitations. “I usually get overwhelmed by the variety of colour choices I can make so telling myself I can only use, let’s say, five colours at a time makes my work easier and decisions quicker,” Vilnius-based illustrator Kissi Ussuki tells It’s Nice That. “I don’t really know how to explain my love for pink, it’s just a very uplifting colour and I really loved the pink shade of acrylic paint when I was choosing those first paint bottles at a local store.”

Alicetye-gilbertandgeorge-printedpages-illustration-itsnicethat-list Work / Printed Pages How Alice Tye tackled the daunting task of painting a portrait of Gilbert and George

Gilbert and George, the matching artist duo who go everywhere and do absolutely everything together, are one of the most recognisable faces in contemporary art today. The past year has been a marathon of winning accolades for the duo as they returned to fill galleries with The Beard Pictures and Their Fuckosophy, picked up their title as royal academicians and celebrated 50 years of creating work together.

Listcoexist_film_4k_dc Work / Animation Michael Marczewski’s Coexist series combines stock video clips with surreal CGI worlds

From Women Laughing Alone with Salad to the Distracted Boyfriend meme, awkward stock photography can be really good for a laugh. Animator Michael Marczewski’s latest series Coexist makes use of footage found in the depths of stock clip archives for similarly humorous – and at times surreal – ends, mixing snippets with his weird computer-generated worlds.

Nicer-tuesdays-june-recap-list Regulars / Nicer Tuesdays From a devastated Cristiano Ronaldo to embroidered animation: what we learnt at June's Nicer Tuesdays

While the majority of the world watched Argentina play Nigeria in the world cup, we at It’s Nice That made our way to the Oval Space for our monthly event, Nicer Tuesdays. The evening is always host to a range of disciplines and last night was no exception. Atelier Brenda, Robert Rubbish, Season zine and Nikos Livesey took us behind the scenes of graphic design, illustration, publishing and animated embroidery, shining a light on each of their creative niches. Check out what we learnt below:h3. Text can be as effective as images

Specialeditionco.-int-list Work / Digital Special Edition Co. create digital collages which explode on the screen like fireworks

Special Edition Co. is an experimental creative collective comprised of two designers, Sam Small and Trent Roach. Based out of Kansas City, Missouri, it is these makers “primary mission to collaborate on innovative projects with artists internationally,” the designers explain. “Overlapping our aesthetic with other creative mindsets often produces unique and exciting outcomes,” as well as the digital age, “offering endless opportunities to link with other artists.”

List Sponsored / Miscellaneous Meet the shortlist for the MullenLowe NOVA Awards

It’s that time of the year again. Students up and down the country are eagerly curating their work in order to present it at their degree shows for the public to see. This year, for the eighth year running, global marketing communications agency network, MullenLowe Group, returns to sponsor the Central Saint Martins annual show. In addition to being the official sponsors of the degree shows, MullenLowe Group also runs the MullenLowe NOVA Awards to shine a light on the brightest young talent emerging from the world-renowned art, design and performance college.

Snezhana-von-budingen-photography-itsnicethat-list Work / Photography Snezhana von Büdingen uses photography to be a "director, journalist, and painter"

Based in Cologne, Germany although born in Perm, Russia, Snezhana von Büdingen’s photography fulfils her need to tell the stories of others. “My ideas for projects always come from chance encounters with people,” she tells It’s Nice That, “It’s from a fascination with these people that a project develops – people that are different, think differently, and have different views on life.”

Listteam-warm-up---burundi-boys Work / Illustration Tim Vyner’s realtime illustrations of the Street Child World Cup made us fall in love with footie all over again

Stick your head outside in parts of the UK right now and I swear you can hear the intro to Three Lions pumping from a distant car stereo or the soft murmur of “Ing-ger-land” on the breeze. World Cup fever has thoroughly taken hold. But no matter how beautiful it is to plummet six sweet goals into the back of your opponent’s net, deep down we all know that the power of the World Cup is to bring together people from all over the globe in celebration of the beautiful game.

David-lane-richard-gray-radicalluxury-publication-itsnicethat-list Work / Publication Radical Luxury: David Lane and Richard Gray collaborate on new poster-zine for Selfridges

Since the start of 2018, Selfridges have concentrated their efforts on defining the meaning of modern luxury, be it through exhibitions, pop-ups or capsule collections by the likes of Michele Lamy and Gareth Pugh. The pursuit continues, this time with the launch of a new magazine to coincide with the unveiling of the third phase of the department store’s accessories hall, which features a new art-filled entrance on Duke Street, as well as the first European outpost of Tokyo’s Aoyama Flower Market. And with art direction by David Lane of Lane & Associates and The Gourmand, and edited by Richard Gray, director of November Creative, they’re pulling out all the stops.

Fuminagasaka-10men-brightonseries-photography-itsnicethat-4list Work / Photography Photographer Fumi Nagasaka's affectionate take on a family portrait

“About three years ago, I met Sasha at a Starbucks in Brighton Beach while I was working for a location scout,” Fumi tells It’s Nice That. “He was 16 and I wanted to photograph him for my book Untitled Youth, which was published in 2016.” However, after visiting the teen at his Russian family home to get an approval from his parents, the eccentric characters she met inspired her to set up a family shoot.

List32343978_212698286003288_6565516982689464320_n Work / Art Artist Ricardo Passaporte on falling in "love at first sight" with Lidl

When Lidl opened close to my house at the beginning of the year everything changed. Suddenly luxury foodstuffs available only to people for whom ‘supper’ is a legitimate meal – think potted crab, fancy crackers and walnut oil – were available on my meagre freelancer’s wage. Now I could rock up to a friend’s house proffering a bounty of Highland black pudding, panna cotta or buffalo mozzarella, rather than the cheapest wine in the shop and some mystery meat-flavoured crisps. I had arrived.

Jonathanv-illustration-it'snicethat-list Work / Illustration Inspired by meditation, Jonathan Vermersch’s illustrations juxtapose harmony and distortion

Jonathan Vermersch’s illustrations are heavily influenced by his time spent studying animation; they feature elongated limbs in constant movement, as well as miniature scenes easily transferrable into the perfect GIF. Unable to “resist stretching and exaggerating proportions”, Jonathan’s illustrations depict distorted figures in playful interactions. Joking to It’s Nice That that his use of perspective was initially inspired by his height – from “viewing everything from such extreme above angles” – Jonathan reasons that distortion “adds dynamism, movement and drama; it creates rhythm in a way”.

1-list Features / Photography Hollie Fernando on photographing celebrated set designer Es Devlin for Printed Pages

If you were in London in 2016, you might have ended up lost and disoriented in Peckham’s Chanel-scented Mirror Maze installation. The following summer you probably caught sight of Bregenz Festival’s production of Carmen with its spectacular backdrop of two 82-foot-tall hands, throwing a deck of cards in the air. Fast-forward to this spring, and it’s unlikely you missed The Weeknd’s Coachella stage layout that featured a cracked, 30-foot-high theatrical mask as its centerpiece.

00_listimage Partnership / Dropbox: Monthly Poster Dominic Kesterton and Shun Sasaki combine typography and illustration to explore long hot summer days

For London-based illustrator, Dominic Kesterton and Japanese graphic designer Shun Sasaki, the month of June represents the beginning of summer. Spending long days feeling too hot, the creatives wanted to evoke the feeling of keeping cool, visualising the culture of going swimming outdoors, in both Japan and England. Commissioned by Dropbox and It’s Nice That, the pair have combined their personal styles in a typographically illustrated collaborative poster. Created using Dropbox Paper, Shun and Dominic’s poster will be printed and available for free at Nicer Tuesdays June.

Viviane-sassen-hot-mirror-photography-itsnicethat-05 Features / Photography An eye for the uncanny: Viviane Sassen on her concurrent exhibition with Lee Miller

Lee Miller and Viviane Sassen’s work, intentions and verve crossover in ways that may be unexpected considering the close to a century’s gap between their births. Both started out as models: for Sassen, her shift to photography was initially driven by a desire to show a kind of sexuality that was different from that created by the male gaze, “one that’s more fractured and disjointed”; for Miller, it was frustration with the passivity of life in front of the lens. In a manuscript from the archive found and maintained by her son, Antony Penrose, she’s reported by The Guardian as having written: “I looked like an angel, but I was a fiend inside”. For both women, the move from simply being seen, to being the authors of their own image, was soon recast as an opportunity to convey their ideas and experiences, and to show the distortions inherent to subjectivity. In concurrent shows at the Hepworth Wakefield – Lee Miller and Surrealism in Britain and Hot Mirror – Miller and Sassen’s affinity with the surreal will take centre stage. Having played model and muse for a number of Surrealists, Lee Miller went on to become an accomplished artist in her own right, and alongside her art practice, she set up a portrait studio in New York and was instrumental in the invention of “solarisation” – a technique that involves the reversal of tone in photographic prints, creating a silvery aura. As a London correspondent for Condé Nast, she worked first as a fashion photographer before moving on to war reportage. Her eye for the uncanny continued to influence her practice – framing photographs of bomb-sites in ways that distorted their form and challenged perceptions of scale and tone – until the playfulness that defined the Surrealist approach no longer seemed appropriate, with the impact of WW2 unravelling as she followed the German retreat through Europe.

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