Fisher Parrish The Paperweight Show

At a New Brooklyn Gallery, The Paperweight is Anything But Obsolete

If there's anyone who knows from paperweights, it's New York gallerists Patrick Parrish and Zoe Fisher. The two began working together when Fisher — who at the time was helming her own fledgling gallery — began working for Parrish at his Tribeca space, which not only sells vintage examples of those sculptural objects but also boasts a well-documented obsession with Carl Aubock (perhaps king of all paperweight-makers). So it makes sense that when Fisher and Parrish finally decided to go into business together, they would choose the paperweight as their first canvas.
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Ben Branagan's sculptural vases

Sculptural Vases With Scholarly Origins

Among our 30-something friends, collaging is suddenly all the rage. (Maybe it's the new adult coloring book?) But to our minds, there's another use for old books and papers that consistently produces a far more beautiful result: paper pulp, the key ingredient in CHIAOZZA's charming Lump Nubbins, Silo Studio's PPPPP bowls, and now Ben Branagan's Monuments series, which debuted last night in a window installation at London's Darkroom concept shop. For the exhibition, Branagan, a designer and professor in visual communications, transformed the pulped remains deaccessioned library books into a series of totemic, distinctly non-functional pots and vases.
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Bryan Metzdorf’s Sunday Morning Sketches

If you're a creative who's ever had a day job, you will no doubt understand the plight of Bryan Metzdorf, the full-time Urban Outfitters set-builder who, despite also doing freelance projects on the side for brands like Areaware and The Greats, still can't help but spend his Sundays at home working — on the weekly collage series he posts on Instagram with the hashtag "#sundaymorningsketches."
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Art Prints by RoAndCo on Bezar

New York creative firm RoAndCo have used a Memphis- and trompe l'oeil–inspired motif as a jumping off point for a brand new series of art prints for sale exclusively on Bezar. The pastel-colored prints, which come in the 11 different designs pictured below and range from $29 to $129, depending on size, are only available for purchase for the next five days.
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Lauren Clay, Artist

Artist Lauren Clay has a background in painting and printmaking, but her work is hardly confined to the two-dimensional plane. Her body of work began as a series of large paintings on paper. But as she progressed, she became more and more interested in the inherent tendencies of paper to curl away from the wall, and she began to explore the third dimension, bridging the gap between painting and sculpture. We can see this in her delicate cut-out grids on marbled acrylic paper, which naturally curl away from the wall, creating a presence in the viewer's space and a dialogue between paper and wall, paper and viewer, and 2D vs. 3D.
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French Illustration Duo Atelier Bingo

Someday, when someone writes the definitive book looking back on how the internet changed life in the 21st century, they'll include stories like Atelier Bingo's: After living in Paris for two years post-graduation, Adéle Favreau and Maxime Prou decided on a whim one day to leave their burgeoning graphic design careers behind for a life in the countryside, and guess what? It didn't make a lick of difference. The pair now run a bustling illustration studio from a converted factory in Saint-Laurent-sur-Sèvre owned by Favreau's uncle, and thanks to the magic of email, it hasn't stopped them from selling prints online and working with clients like Vogue, The Plant, and Wrap Magazine, plus companies they did graphic design for back in Paris, now three hours away.
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Father Magnus Wenninger, Mathematician

The folks who rank as internet celebrities in Sight Unseen’s world — usually those with a killer eye and a massive following on Tumblr or Instagram — would no doubt seem obscure to most. But even our regular readers might be surprised by today's unconventional yet equally influential story subject. A few years ago, after stumbling across some articles about mathematician Father Magnus Wenninger on the web, we added him to our “Minnesota” file, whose sole other occupant at the time was RO/LU; earlier this summer, we finally had an occasion to open said file when SU contributor Debbie Carlos asked if she could shoot anything for us there. Carlos was game enough to track down the nonagenarian priest — who became a cult figure in the mathematics world (and later in the online world) for his elaborate paper-polyhedron models — in his home at St. John’s Abbey outside Minneapolis. Not only did she photograph Wenninger and his works, she got him to open up about his history and his methodology as well.
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A table in Krantz’s studio laid out with works in progress and remnants of previous work. “I tend to make a lot more than what I’m going to need for a show because I don’t exactly know, in the moment, where things are going to go, so I end up editing out things that don’t really work. But I generally save them and sometimes they’re great in another context.”

Katy Krantz, Ceramicist

Katy Krantz likes to leave things to chance, at least when it comes to making ceramics. She has a method, but it involves working with a “wild and crazy collaborator” — a giant gas kiln that can fire clay at extremely high temperatures. “When you fire that high, the clay and glaze react in ways that are unpredictable. You get a lot of weird, random spotting, things that I would never be able to paint on.” That element of surprise and transformation runs through her colorful, abstract sculptural objects and jewelry, as well as her block prints and recent forays into fabric. Though she’ll establish “loose parameters” at the outset of a project, she says she’s “never been able to work with a real detailed plan in mind. I can work like that, but I tend to make really boring work that way. When I have too much control, it’s less interesting.”
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Studio AH–HA’s Stationery Collection

We don't do this very often at Sight Unseen — post about the same subject twice in the span of two weeks — but in this case, we couldn't help it: When the young Portuguese graphics duo Studio AH–HA submitted their answers for our recent Up and Coming profile, they included eight impeccably styled photos of their personal stationery collection, and we couldn't bear to let the images go to waste. There are few things more beautiful than old paper goods, as anyone who's ever perused the goods at Present and Correct, or the mountains of vintage office ephemera available on Etsy, can surely attest. So we asked AH–HA's Catarina Carreiras and Carolina Cantante to share the stories behind the objects in the photos they shot for us, many of which they inhereted from Carreiras's late grandfather.
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Roula Parthenou, Parts and Wholes, 2013: “Roula’s earlier work consisted of pieces she called handmade readymades: She’d buy pre-made canvases from art supply stores, find objects in the same size and shape like books or pieces of lumber, then paint the canvases as replicas. These tables, from her recent third solo show with the gallery, contain objects that look like books or other mysterious things; things that look like holes but aren’t holes, or that look like they’re part of something but you don’t know what. There are blocks of wood that look like sponges, but there's also part of a rain pipe that’s an actual pipe. Very few of them are found objects, but you start to question that.”

Michael Klein of Toronto’s MKG127 Gallery

According to Canadian curator Michael Klein, when people think of art in Vancouver, they think of photo-conceptualism. When they think of Winnipeg, it’s the Royal Art Lodge, the drawing collective founded in 1996 that launched the careers of talents like Marcel Dzama. But Toronto, on the other hand, resists such classifications — it’s one of the most diverse cities in the world, says Klein, and the same can be said for its art scene. So why do we automatically associate the city with the kind of clever, minimalist conceptual work that Klein shows at MKG127, the gallery he founded there in 2007? Blame the artist Micah Lexier — we covered his amazing A to B installation on Sight Unseen in 2010, and then proceeded to fall down the MKG rabbit hole, marveling both at the subtle, obsessive-compulsive thrills that characterize many of the works shown there and at the weird cohesiveness of Klein’s vision.
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Matthew Shlian, Paper Engineer

Knowing what we do about Matthew Shlian, it’s hard to believe that the Ann Arbor, Michigan–based artist ever thought he wanted to be a ceramicist. Ceramics is a medium of imprecision and risk, full of frequent failure and a high degree of unknowability. Shlian, on the other hand, can be found these days doing one of three things, each of which requires an almost uncanny amount of precision: drumming; working with scientists at the University of Michigan using paper to visualize structures at the micro and nano scales; or folding and gluing paper into intricate sculptures that range from 11x11-inch editions for Ghostly International to an 8-foot installation in the window of a New York Levi’s flagship. “I’ve always loved geometry,” Shlian says. “I understand spatial relations and I can envision the leap from 2D to 3D pretty easily. That kind of led the way to paper, and paper became the medium by which to execute a lot of my ideas.”
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