Rivera, Diego

Diego Rivera, a memorable figure in 20th century art, actively painted during the 50 years from 1907 to 1957. Mexican by birth, Rivera spent a good portion of his adult life in Europe and the United States as well as in his home in Mexico City. Early in his career, he dabbled in Cubism and later embraced Post-Impressionism, but his unique style and perspective is immediately recognizable as his own. He was involved in the world of politics as a dedicated Marxist and joined the Mexican Communist Party in 1922. He hosted Russian exile Leon Trotsky and his wife at his home in Mexico City in the 1930s. Lived in unsettled times and led a turbulent life, Diego Rivera, widely known for his Marxist leanings, along with Marxism Revolutionary Che Guevara and a small band of contemporary figures, has become a countercultural symbol of 20th century, and created a legacy in art that continue to inspire the imagination and mind.

Diego Rivera’s first government-commissioned mural, Creation was created over the course of a year and covers over a thousand square feet. It is an allegorical composition with mythological and religious motifs.The figures in the mural are over twelve feet high, which were in proportion to the huge pipe organ which surrounded the wall. At the top a symbol, which could represent the Divine Trinity with blessing hands.It also follows old Egyptian iconography of Aton, the symbol of the creative sun. At the bottom Eva and Adam. Over them on both sides the nine Muses. And on the next level the Christian Virtues: From the left: Love, Hope and Faith and on the right side: Prudence, Justice and Strength. In the sky Wisdom and Science.Everything is in classical renaissance style, where similar allegories are common. The figures are based on life models. Note that the picture does not have any political, ideological tendency. The painting technique is encaustic, which means that the pigments were applied suspended in molten wax. A complicated technique which the old Egyptians already knew.

Although it was widely popular, Rivera felt that the painting was too Italian in technique, and he did not like it. During the painting of the mural, Rivera felt compelled to carry a pistol with him at all times, to protect himself from the right-wing students.

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Roberts, Verity

Verity paints primarily in encaustic. Originally self-taught in encaustic, over the last decade Verity has attended and participated in numerous workshops, exhibitions and encaustic conferences in the US. Her earlier career was as a film set decorator.

Verity has further adapted the encaustic process, adding media such as wax pencils, digital print transfers and inks. This extraordinarily versatile medium enables the artist to exploit both the opaque and transparent qualities of the wax by layering it – this being a particular feature of the encaustic process. Whether smooth and translucent or thickly textural, the wax forms an emotionally charged surface.

Her inspiration derives from her travels – her travelscapes – recollections both vivid and allusive are built over time. Each painting with its complex layered surface aims to elicit a response: reshaping its own new history.

She spends time in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico where she is represented by Calderoni Studio in Fábrica La Aurora. She exhibits in Sydney at Art2Muse Gallery and is collected both in Australia and intenationally.

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Ri, Ren

Ren Ri was born in 1984 in Harbin, China, he studied Fine Art at Tsinghua University and then received his Masters at Saint-Petersburg Herzen State University, Russia. He has a PhD in Fine Art from Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing. Ren Ri has won and been nominated for several international awards and contests in the arts.

Ren Ri’s art is signified by the very special medium he uses: beeswax. Considered an unusual and difficult material to work with Ren Ri’s understanding of bees psychology and nature assist him in his creative process. He works in collaboration with insects to create his mesmerizing sculptures. To manipulate natural processes the artist must find a balance cooperating with nature to accomplish his artistic goals.

The artist’s most famous series – Yuansu I, II and III – are all related to his intimate experiences with bees. Ren Ri started to learn the craft of beekeeping in 2006 and after several years he felt knowledgeable enough to begin using beeswax as his primary medium.

His first series, Yuansu I: The Origin of Geometric Series (2007) incorporates a number of beeswax maps. In his second series he moves from investigating movement to psychology through collaboration between his bees and Ren Ri himself. The artist placed the queen in the middle of the box and let other bees build around her. Every few days he changed the position of the box. Resulting in Yuansu II, a series of stunning geometrical sculptures. Yuansu III is a performance showing the relationships between humans and bees – Ren Ri offers himself as a surface, pushes bees into his face and subsequently gets stung numerous times.

This young artist has been exhibited internationally, exhibitions he has been featured in include: Carve & New Media, 798 Art District, Beijing, China (2007), Fame Di Terra, Milan, Italy, 6th Art Laguna Exhibition, Venice, Italy (both in 2012), Fusion Convergence at T Museum in Hangzhou, China (2014) and Kaiserring Stipendiat 2015: Ren Ri at Mönchehaus Museum, Goslar, Germany in 2015 after he received his Kaiserring Award.