March 5, 2020

Katherine Coons: An Autobiographical Journey

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Katherine Coons: An Autobiographical Journey

Artist’s Statement: “My work embraces several concepts simultaneously. The images in this proposal portray an autobiographical picture of my life, my travels, and the places that I have inhabited. I make creations that fit my mood, energy, and temperament. My inspiration comes from the nature that surrounds me, and I am deeply influenced by differences of culture, color, and the diversity of attitudes and ideas gleaned from these aspects. Numerous travels abroad to Europe and Asia have greatly influenced my artworks, having spent much time observing different peoples and their cultures.  Documenting my daily thoughts in sketchbooks, and subsequent ruminations on, and drawings from my daily excursions evolve into greater arenas of art making. Collected curios from these places are infused into my mixed media artworks and installations. My creations are derived from these experiences, while my art exhibitions illustrate these memories.” “I am greatly inspired by large, sprawling landscapes such as those of Alaska where I lived for seventeen years. I describe the paintings that evolve from these landscapes as gestural, fleeting sensations of transitory time and place. I would describe my work as expressionistic. Newer paintings include…

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February 6, 2020

Brett Stout – Deep, Dark Paintings

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Brett Stout – Deep, Dark Paintings

All images copyright, Brett Stout. *** Brett Stout is a 40-year-old artist and writer. He is a high school dropout and former construction worker turned college graduate and paramedic. He creates mostly controversial work usually while breathing toxic paint fumes from a small cramped apartment known as “The Nerd Lab” in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. His work has appeared in a vast range of diverse media, from international indie zines like Litro Magazine UK to Brown University. This is his first feature in The Fictional Café.

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January 8, 2020

Amanda Grafe: The Enlightened Paintbrush

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Amanda Grafe: The Enlightened Paintbrush

We’re very pleased to introduce Amanda Grafe, an artist, illustrator and author of four books. A Rhode Island native, she holds a M.S. from Johnson & Wales University. We met Amanda at the Rhode Island Author’s Expo in December and were immediately impressed with her creative work. We hope you will be, too. Artist’s Statement (1): Abstract painting allow rules to be bent in ways other art forms cannot. Sticking mainly with oils, but occasionally incorporating other mediums, has given me a chance to selfishly explore, emotionally mend, deconstruct enigmas, and fight against both societal and personal constructs I feel do not serve humanity.  Generally, I prefer not to title my work. Although titles are useful, I believe they can in some instances confine the viewer’s mind, instructing them as to what they should be…

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October 27, 2019

Mind-Melding with Lew Holzman’s Art

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Mind-Melding with Lew Holzman’s Art

We’re pleased to showcase Lew’s unique expression of the intersection of photography and painting once again. His work first appeared here, and was featured again in our just-published anthology, The Strong Stuff: The Best of Fictional Café, 2013-2017. Artist’s Statement There are many beautiful or interesting moments that one can capture but we’ve seen many of them too many times. I always attempt to avoid the clichéd. My work is transformational so that we might look again and see things somehow differently. I am trying to blur the distinction between photography and painting with influences mainly from late 19th and 20th-century art movements including Surrealism, Dadaism, and abstract expressionism. *** I have always created either word images in my poetry or visual images. Digital photography expanded my horizons and my transformations transformed me into a…

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September 21, 2019

“My Year in Art,” by Steve Sangapore

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“My Year in Art,” by Steve Sangapore

After graduating from college in 2013 with a degree in art, I spent the next five years maintaining a sharp focus on honing my craft as a painter. Countless studio hours were matched with even more time pursuing opportunities, schmoozing with gallerists, and making my presence known within Boston’s, and the greater Northeast’s, vibrant art communities. While each year yielded great leaps in my technical dexterity and academic proficiency as a painter, the art was virtually devoid of the most important component that separates art from craft . . . and I just couldn’t see it. Or, perhaps I could see it—I just didn’t want to. The debates between, “what is good art” and “what is or can be art” have been raging on for years – particularly since the mid-19th century with the birth…

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September 1, 2019

William Wolak, Master of Collage

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William Wolak, Master of Collage

Bill Wolak has kindly consented to share his masterful collage works with Fictional Cafe, and we’re delighted to bring his work before you. As his collages take different form and shape depending upon his ideas and materials, so it is with his work and creativity. Titles are displayed beneath images. Bill Wolak teaches creative writing at William Paterson University in Paterson, New Jersey. In addition to creating collages, he is a poet and a photographer. He has just published his fifteenth book of poetry entitled The Nakedness Defense with Ekstasis Editions. His collages have appeared recently in Naked in New Hope 2017; The 2019 Seattle Erotic Art Festival; Poetic Illusion; The Riverside Gallery, Hackensack, NJ; the 2019 Dirty Show in Detroit; 2018 The Rochester Erotic Arts Festival and The 2018 Montreal Erotic Art Festival.  artist photo courtesy India Times

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July 23, 2019

Metamorphosis: Qinrui Chen’s Surrealistic BioArt

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Metamorphosis: Qinrui Chen’s Surrealistic BioArt

Fictional Café is pleased to showcase the creative work of up-and-coming Shanghai artist Qinrui Chen. We believe her education in neuroscience adds a quite a unique perspective to her art. Artist’s Statement – “We can’t talk about surrealism without mentioning realism as a reference, like Godzilla and sci-fi – its distinct character is its ‘size of a building’ and fixation on the deconstruction of ‘office space.’ What makes it surreal but still manages to be meaningful is it brings us to reflect on questions of realism: how do we deal with the inner monster, how to seek the individual dream of a powerful superego in a suppressive social-political environment per Godzilla, or strangely per A Hundred Years of Solitude too (to some extent). “So I find the most realism I can: the medical image of…

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June 19, 2019

A Suspension of Disbelief: Lydia Kinney’s Art

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A Suspension of Disbelief: Lydia Kinney’s Art

Lydia Kinney lives and works in Greenfield, Massachusetts. She graduated from Massachusetts College of Art and Design in 2014 with a BFA in Painting. Lydia’s work focuses on spatial abstractions, forming tensions of interior/exterior environments. Subjects include windows and pillars into other planes, disintegrating color fields, formally ambiguous confetti, and plays of texture. The Artist’s Statement “My paintings function with haphazard visual structure and a focus on material. The composition is pivoted on stained substrates and poured surfaces. I push the compositions to balance a suspension of disbelief and a tangible acknowledgment of a made object. The dichotomy of drawn and painted treatments takes advantage of the depth and atmosphere implied by wet, amorphous forms and planes. “Rigid lines and shapes encounter these surfaces, holding up, constraining, destabilizing, and contradicting their preceding natural flow. The…

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June 6, 2019

We Would Love To Hear From YOU!

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We Would Love To Hear From YOU!

Dear FC Coffee Club members and visitors to our ‘zine, For many years, we weren’t able to permit unfettered comments from you, our members, because the gate to the Comments section was wide open to spam – and boy, did we get it. With the new version of WordPress software, this is no longer the problem it was. Where before you had to have a WordPress account, login and password, now you don’t. We would love to hear from you! All you have to do is drop down to Leave a Reply and type away in the Comments box below. (Don’t forget to click the Post Comment box.) We’ve been testing it, and it works great. The only thing that would make it better is the involvement of our treasured Coffee Club members. So don’t…

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May 12, 2019

Kay Hartung’s Microbial Visions of An Unseen World

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Kay Hartung’s Microbial Visions of An Unseen World

With the advancement of science and the ability to view organisms never before seen, Kay Hartung thinks about the great power that such minute things may hold. She contemplates the potential impact of cellular activity on the visible universe and the human species. Over the past two years, she has continued to pursue this interest in her art. I create my own vision of cells, proteins and viruses that don’t actually exist, but are an artistic evolution from familiar forms. I create colonies of cellular shapes that migrate, flow and multiply. The process of painting with encaustic* builds layer upon layer of biomorphic forms, suggesting growth, development and movement. I construct environments for these forms, landscapes in which they can interact. In many of my works you will see that pattern is a predominant characteristic:…

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