whittling away

Meet Maskull Lasserre, a Canadian born artist whos flare for intricate detail and subject matter combined with specific placement and use of crafts has caught the attention of art buffs globally. His merging of the macabre with wood, found objects, and various non traditional mixed media is almost like a backwoods homage to HR Giger's work. Born in 1978, Maskull attended Mount Allison University in New Brunswick, where he received his BFA in 2001, and then on to Concordia where he got his MFA in 2009. Between the time span of his degrees, he was already receiving major city commissions in Canada, guest lecturing, and piling up group shows. His first major solo exhibition was in 2008 at the Karsh Masson Gallery in Ottawa, Ontario. He is currently represented by the GALLERY PIERRE-FRANCOIS OUELLETTE ART CONTEMPORAIN, in Montreal, Quebec.

examples of his work:



Carved newspapers, mechanical press


Steel, wool, textile materials, industrial sewing machine


"Self Doubt"


Carved plywood plinth, belljar

"Self Doubt" (detail).

for more information and examples of his work, please visit his website:



If only I could eat foam...

Meet Tamara Kostianovsky. She is a Jerusalem born artist who grew up in Buenos Aires, and currently works out of NYC (no wayyyy). Much like Heather Hart, Tamara's work is extremely tedious and material and fabric based that mimics objects or enhances the ordinary, such as her favorite subject, the meat industry (a very large industry in Argentina).

As Tamara explains," My intention is to confront the viewers with the real and grotesque nature of violence, offering a context for reflecting about the vulnerability of our physical existences, brutality, poverty, consumption, and the voracious needs of the body."

Tamara received her BFA from the National School of Fine Arts “Prilidiano Pueyrredon” in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 98' and her MFA in 2003 from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts. She is represented by the SLAG gallery in NYC and recently had a show entitled, "Stains".

"Abacus", 2008

"Mast", 2008. Clothing and wood originally from the artist.


"the Persistence of Agony", 2008. Wood, vinyl, foam and metal installation.




meet Heather Hart, queen of crochet.

Born in 1975 in Seattle, she received her undergraduate degree from Cornish College of the arts, and later, her MFA from PRINCETON. Heather Hart's mixture of interactive installations, individual pieces, and performances has gained her notoriety throughout the years, from her though provoking pieces on identity, to her OCD-like work ethic of using common crafty materials. Her work is reminiscent of the early feminist art movement from the 1970's, but has a bonding aesthetic with all viewers.

She wrote:

"I am interested in how we, as humans, relate to each other. How we relate to materials. Perception. Assumption. Tradition. Nostalgia. Hermeneutics. Semantics. Phenomenology. And how they contribute to our forming our identity."

Her public installations are something to behold, as they are strategically placed in areas of human interaction, and some of the sheer scale of her work engulfs the viewer.

One such examples is her "Subway Cozies" series.

She currently resides and works out of NYC.

For more of her work, check out her website.




Meet David Sandlin, a gem of the UAB Arts Program

He's a Northern Irish born artist who emigrated to the Alabama with his army family back when he was a youth. His experiences with sectarian violence, guilt-ridden religious indoctrination, and youth rebellion, is shown within his work, culminated with a major culture shock that he felt when moving to Birmingham, AL in the 1970's. His work consistently involves extremely charged imagery in a dark, dark, dark, comical manner. Sandlin is known for his ongoing series of illustrations in a world called "Sinland". 

"Land of 1,000 Beers was one of the first manifestations of “Sinland,” a thematically unified body of work—you could call it Dante’s Divine Comedy meets Hank Williams. (It was pure serendipity that Sinland is an anagram of Sandlin—when I accidentally noticed it, I knew I was on the right track.) I saw Land of 1,000 Beers as a metaphor for purgatory—America as a land of lotus-eaters, neither good nor bad, just oblivious and inebriated." - Sandlin

For more info and work, check out his website.



Emerging installation, painting, sculpture, and performance art into his work, Shaun El C. Leonardo encapsulates viewers into his own world where the ideas of personal masculinity are visualized with self portrait super heroes, football stars, and, of course, professional wrestling. What draws me to this artist, besides the obvious similar use of subject and material, is that he doesn't pander to any style and because of that I believe his work is true to himself, and in return points a big middle finger to elitism in the art world. ROLL TIDE.


Shaun El C. Leonardo received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute and currently lives/works in Queens, New York City – the borough in which he was born and raised.


"My artwork extends from an internal investigation of the childhood role models, popular icons and cultural stereotypes that influenced how I perceive what it means to be a man. By projecting myself as hyper-masculine heroes, I manifest the ongoing tensions between my desires to represent male virility and the vulnerabilities within my identity developed by these images of power."


"Battle Royal", 3 hour performance piece, October 2009

for more, check out his website @