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Close Your Eyes And Count To Ten

Alex Diamond: Close Your Eyes And Count To Ten (2017)
Sculptural woodcut, Acrylic paint, 126 x 102 x 37 cm | check availability

This is very poetic piece. "Close Your Eyes And Count To Ten" may be seen as a modern totem pole ... This work is so rich with "content", you should explore it with time.

It is a large (126 x 102 x 37 cm) sculpture "hanging" on or "coming out of" the wall - see detail images below to understand a bit more of the depth itself and all the layers I built.

It was first shown at the exhibition "Weapons Of Mass Seduction 2", my duo show with Victor Castillo at heliumcowboy in Hamburg Nov-Dec 2017. I have posted the video from that exhibition below, it also includes some video footage of this artwork, which may helps to see a bit more of it.

I am insanely happy with how this one turned out, considering the complexity of the construction ... but yet again it is also a bit frustrating to only have images on the internet to show for it, because to fully experience my work one needs to see it in the original. Facebook or instagram etc. can't do it justice at all, so I hope there will be a chance again to show it soon somewhere in the offline world.

 

You can check the availability of my work on artsy.  

Finally A Cowboy

Finally A Cowboy, 2017. Sculptural woodcut, acrylic paint, 35 × 51 × 5 cm (13 4/5 × 20 1/10 × 2 in) | check for availability here (artsy.net)

This was actually the last piece I've finished for my exhibition "Weapons Of Mass Seduction 2", my show together with Victor Castillo at heliumcowboy Nov 11 – Dec 16 in Hamburg. 

"Finally A Cowboy" is a sculptural, painted woodcut that floats on the wall. It includes a bit of my biography ;) and seemed to be the perfect work to close* this eventful year in which I turned 50 and heliumcowboy 15 years old  and I had the privilege to share so many beautiful moments with so many wonderful people over the course of the past 12 months.

To early for an annual review, I stop myself here and hope we find an opportunity to chat personally about all this at some other time. If you are in Hamburg, this could happen at the exhibition, which is open until Dec 15, or at the Finissage we'll host on the 16th (more info / FB event).   

PS: If you are interested - you can check the availability of this work at the heliumcowboy artsy page.

PPS: this is the work I have been working on when the NDR was at my studio to film and interview me. Here's the vimeo-link to the feature if you haven't seen it yet.  

* note: well it ain't the last piece I made in 2017, but still ...

WEAPONS OF MASS SEDUCTION 2 WITH VICTOR CASTILLO

Video from the opening of the exhibition "Weapons Of Mass Seduction 2" by Philip Simon / Silberblick.co

This winter, from November 11 – December 15, my friend and fellow artist Victor Castillo and me embark once again on the journey of a joint exhibition. A cooperation we begun in 2014 with the first edition of "Weapons Of Mass Seduction" - we feel our work fits very well together, in it we tell stories of similar reference and we do have the same taste in art, movies and music, which mirrors a lot in our pop-oriented creations. A perfect match, despite the very different techniques we use.

We always wanted to do a sequel to this 2014 show, and finally we managed to find the time and the support for a second edition. While our concept is not exclusively tied to the heliumcowboy gallery in Hamburg, it was the most obvious to do it here again.  Which said - we are both open to show the third edition in a different city, country and gallery ...

Anyway. The Opening on Nov 11 was a blast! Here are a lot of gallery views from the exhibition. There will be a video and some images later from the opening, too. And all the exhibited artwork can be found on the gallery's artsy-page.  

Oh and here's a video from the opening back in 2014 ....

Video from the exhibition Victor Castillo & Alex Diamond WEAPONS OF MASS SEDUCTION September 13-27, 2014, in Hamburg presented by heliumcowboy gallery / Film by Kool Motion Pictures / Tobias Sundermann / Music: Walkin' by NITRO17 

(Too Much) Monkey Business

Alex Diamond: (Too Much) Monkey Business
Sculptural Woodcut (2017). Wood, acrylic paint, 40 x 30 x 14 cm.

This is probably one of my more self-explanatory works. So no words of wisdom from me this time. You‘ll figure it all out yourselves! 🙏 

One thing though: This work was created for the 25-year anniversary exhibition of the Galerie Wolfsen in Aalborg (Denmark), opening September 23. Kent Wolfsen and Rasmus Fischer picked me up for their fine gallery in January 2016, and I am super grateful for everything they did for me since. 

New work: Small woodcuts

Three small little works. Click image to visit my Artsy-overview of artworks. 

Three small little works. Click image to visit my Artsy-overview of artworks. 

Three inbetween-woodcuts I've made recently. You can find out more and check availability on my work overview on Artsy, here. There is only one left I believe.

The Bronco Buster revisited

Alex Diamond: The Bronco Buster Revisited (2017)
Wood, Acrylic paint, Resin, 48 x 48 x 65 cm 

The work "The Bronco Buster Revisited" quotes the most famous statue of the Old American West, the Bronco Buster by Frederic Remington, first cast in bronze in 1895 (one of the very first casts of many stands in the Oval Office, by the way). Of course I took my liberties with it. And placed it into a modern day environment instead of the plains of Kentucky. But despite the contemporary urban setting there is a lot of that Americana-feeling in this piece.

This work also took me to a new level of creating stage-like, sculptural woodcuts. Despite it being smaller sized in regards to the wall space (48 x 48 cm /  18.9 x 18.9 "), it comes 65 cm (25.6 ") out of the wall and can be viewed from all angles (front and sides), creating new perspectives when you move around. It is not a true three dimensional piece of course, I'd call it "fake 3-D", because it is completely made from the planks I usually use for my woodcuts and built a little bit like a wooden toy on a theatre stage.

Well, enough said. I hope these images do it justice, as usual it is rather difficult to show in photographs. Hope you can see it live at some point, it makes a lot more sense then. 

For availability of this piece you can contact the heliumcowboy gallery directly via sales@heliumcowboy.com or visit their artsy-page.

PS: This work was first shown at the exhibition COWBOYLAND celebrating 15 years of the heliumcowboy artspace that opened on in summer 2017 with a wonderful opening event (watch the video here). At this very unique show, 55 artists from around the world exhibited one work each at the gallery in Hamburg. 

New works and Retrospective Exhibition

Alex Diamond: Multi-layered, sculptural woodcut. Wood, acrylic paint, resin (2017). Ca. 30 x 33 x 9 cm (11.8” x 13” x 3.5”) (check availability)

Three of my brand new multi-layered woodcuts are currently on display in a huge exhibition in Hamburg. This show by Jenny Falckenberg Unique Art Concepts takes place in the museum-like settings of the backrooms of the Rebelle Pop-Up Boutique on Hamburg's finest shopping streets, Neuer Wall 72. It features work by Billi Methé, Franziska Stünkel, Christian Awe and Karl Göhrlich.

I have a very large space to present artwork from 2013 until today. It is some kind of unexpected (smaller) Retrospective of my art. If you are in Hamburg and you are interested in Alex Diamond, you should head over and check it out. I will be there again some time on Saturday, May 13 (last day of the show!). Drop me a mail if you want to have a tour: studio@alexdiamond.net

Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10 am - 7 pm, Sat 10 am - 6 pm. 

Exhibition ends Saturday May 13 - hope you can make it!

And please check the video below to get an idea for the exhibition. 

Alex Diamond: ... we'll be whole
Multi-layered, sculptural woodcut. Wood, acrylic paint, resin (2017). Ca. 30 x 33 x 9 cm (11.8” x 13” x 3.5”) (check availability)

Welcome To Bear Mountain

Alex Diamond: Welcome To Bear Mountain (2017)
Multi-layered, sculptural woodcut. Wood, acrylic paint, resin. ca. 55 x 60 x 10 cm (21,6” x 23,6” x 3,9”)

„Welcome To Bear Mountain“ is a sculptural, multi-layered woodcut, painted and brushed/sponged with acrylic paint. One layer is additionally covered in transparent resin. It was produced in Hamburg in my studio between January 26 and February 14, 2017.

ABOUT THE ARTWORK

In my recent work „Welcome To Bear Mountain“, I am once again creating a dialogue between nature and urbanity in todays society. The larger-than-life bear resting on the hilltop; the various people climbing or standing on top of him, holding flares, flags or each others; the high-rise buildings in the background as a contrast to the mountain range in the front - there are a lot of details to discover and explore in this dioramic wall-sculpture. The work is composed almost like a theatre play - with plenty elements of drama. 

There are signs of fiery protest and revolution (the flares, the flags, the propaganda-poster-like posture of the trio on top), there is a huge calmness (in the bear and the mountains) and there is hope, in the shape of the masked child and the father figure holding it fast and secure. 

You are welcome to join - thus the title - and take your part in this play. Find your own characters and explanations and stories. Choose your side and pick your role. Get involved. Even if you are not into acting and more the spectator-kind of guy: that‘s totally cool, but don‘t just lean back and relax - stay alert. 

Alex Diamond: Welcome To Bear Mountain (2017)
Multi-layered, sculptural woodcut. Wood, acrylic paint, resin. Ca. 55 x 60 x 10 cm (21,6” x 23,6” x 3,9”)

That is the underlying inspiration for the work: Let‘s jointly face the tasks at hand, which in the state of the world we live in right now are to resist and to prevent and to care. We have to stand together, and the (in this story purely fictional) ‚Bear Mountain‘ is a place where everyone is welcome. 

It is probably to easy (and wrong) to file this piece solely under ‚political‘. For me it is full of the romantic and passionate voice I tell all my stories with. But it surely takes a critical stance in a more obvious way than some of my other work. Being more direct and blunt here of course is a concession to current times. When democracy and human values are at risk, holding still and hiding somewhere in front of theTelevision and behind Facebook (etc) is not an option: „You will not be able to stay home, brother / You will not be able to plug in, turn on and drop out“ (Gil Scott-Heron, ‚The Revolution Will Not Be Televised‘, 1970).  

But again I have to stop myself here from going too far into the details and the background of the work. I firmly believe that this piece can have a completely different meaning and significance to whoever gets close enough to explore it. 

Whis is part of the luxury in art: It is my luxury to spend countless hours in the studio (or wherever I roam, actually), meandering in my thoughts and working away with sharp blades and wood. It is the viewers luxury to get inspired to let her or his personal thoughts wander - or to just give a fuck, of course ... 

Whatever your part in „Welcome to Bear Mountain“ will be - I hope you enjoy this work as much as I did creating and building it.  

Jörg Heikhaus aka Alex Diamond, February 2017.

The World Is Yours Baby | Woodcut for Jonathan LeVine Gallery

Alex Diamond: The World Is Yours Baby
Multi-layered, sculptural woodcut. Wood, acrylic paint. Ca. 90 x 65 x 12 cm (35,4” x 25,5” x 4,7”), January 2017

This artwork was created for the inaugural exhibition of the new Jonathan Levine Gallery in Jersey City on February 18, 2017. It is a sculptural, 4-layer woodcut, painted and brushed/sponged with acrylic paint. It was produced in Hamburg at my studio between December 27, 2016 and January 18, 2017. 

The artwork tells  a story of modern day life, of nature and urbanity, where a cemented world becomes the background for various smaller stories of individual human (and not so human) beings, told with lots of imagination and spurs of absurdity in mind. With the bear and the forest as other key elements, this piece is also about trying to keep a world in balance that seems to become crazier every day. 

„The World Is Yours, Baby“, the title of this work, is something you‘d tell someone close to you, to inspire that person  to go out and explore, create and grow. But it can also be seen as a challenge or a warning to take on responsibility and be commited.

I stop myself here from going too far into the details of, for example, all those people in the work, even though each and one of them does mean a lot to me. I do not like to give too much insight in my thought process behind my artworks, because I want to leave room to your own story to find its way into the image. One of the reasons I love to work with layers is because they create depth and hidden places, thus building spaces in the artwork that can be taken over by everyones‘ imagination. I hope you enjoy this work as much as I did creating and building it.  

***

If you are interested in acquiring this work, please contact sales@jonathanlevinegallery.com

The exhibition "Welcome To Jersey" opens February 18, 2017. It features an amazing line-up of artists, and I am very honored to be a part of this very special exhibition amongst Adam Wallacavage, AJ Fosik, Alessandro Gallo, Alexis Diaz, Andy Kehoe, Ashley Wood, Augustine Kofie, Beth Cavener, Camille Rose Garcia, Carlos Ramirez, Chloe Early, Cryptik, Dan Witz, Diego Gravinese, Eloy Morales, Erik Jones, EVOL, Gary Taxali, Haroshi, Hush, Jeff Soto, Jim Houser, Joel Rea, John Jacobsmeyer, Jorg Heikhaus/Alex Diamond, Josh Agle (Shag), Kazuki Takamatsu, Mab Graves, Martin Wittfooth, Mary Iverson, Matt Leines, Matthew Grabelsky, Michael Reeder, Miss Van, Nick Walker, Nychos, Phil Hale, Ron English, Shepard Fairey, Tara McPherson and Tristan Eaton.

The Traveller

The Traveller (Decmber 2016), woodcut, acrylic paint, 24 x 30 cm
© Alex Diamond

Something very personal: This is a painted woodcut of my wonderful family, cut after a photo that was taken at a big farewell last year. It is a very special piece that graces our living room now. This is the last work I did in 2016, called "The Traveller".

It is a rather small work (24x30 cm), that is why it doesn't have many details - there is a limit to precision when cutting small pieces of wood, but I love the roughness and reduction of the carved lines here.

(Oh yeah, and no beards on Melvin or me - the original photo was taken in the beard-free phase last summer, and I don't do "cosmetics" on woodcuts 😎😂)