As we spend more time indoors than ever, many are feeling the urge to redecorate and rearrange their homes to better reflect their styles, interests, and travels. Capturing spaces that portray how environments reveal identity about the artist, as well as the people who may inhabit them, Michael Callas, America Martin, and Mary Finlayson showcase innovative interiors that speak to personal style and hidden narrative.
Informed by the spirit of architectural drafting, Michael Callas’ subject matter is often dedicated to elaborate building interiors with a keen attention to detail.
"After a short stint in college, I realized that my desire was not to build houses or buildings. Instead, I dug deeper and realized I was enamored by the aesthetics of architecture, that is what drove my passion,” says Callas.
Intricately produced through a rigorous process of drafting, mapping, and hand-cutting precise templates, the image is then transposed onto canvas with aerosol paints, creating a surface both rich and uniform in color.
“My goal is to create a piece of art that looks like the hand was never there. I love clean chaos free surfaces. I want my work to look print like. For that reason, it requires an extremely rigid and specific process.”
Reimagining the still life tradition with fresh eyes, America Martin maintains her focus on the everyday objects that inform, inspire, and enhance ordinary existence. Visually notating her surroundings, Martin’s choice to either highlight or obscure particular elements reveals personal allegorical and symbolic significance in each composition. Each object is given distinctive personalities and attitudes as their energetic marks and gestural lines reinvent each setting into a decisively modern, unexpected interpretation.
In Martin’s painting, “Books by Poets, a Jug of Water, and Other Things on the Table” she tightly crops a table setting replete with a variety of visually interesting and diverse objects. Mirroring the geometry of the tablecloth with that of the objects, Martin combines elements of the still life genre with her glimpse inside an interior. The final result is a captivating arrangement and an emerging curiosity about the owner and the remainder of the room.
Navigating the themes of intimacy, memory, and self, Mary Finlayson’s gouache paintings reflect the vulnerable narratives unveiled through ownership of possessions. Flattening the perspective of each scene, her still lifes provide a voyeuristic glimpse in to each curated space.
Creating environments that are partly real and partly imagined, Finlayson’s ability to craft a story by way of her art is enigmatic. Considering interiors as portraits that contain their own narratives, her compositions explore the stories that each space tells about the people who inhabit them. Capturing the intimacy of the interior, each of her creations, her energetic lines evoke movement that helps enliven the otherwise stagnant settings.
Finding balance between form, color, and perspective, Callas, Martin, and Finlayson effectively communicate the underlying identity of each interior, providing insight into their own artistic practices and perhaps even into the inhabitants of each detailed setting.
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