Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy

Like everyone with a laptop or a smart phone, bits and pieces of artist Kate Steciw’s life are stored away on hard drives. But unlike the rest of us—who may spend hours clicking through Tumblr and Facebook photos without much thought—Steciw is acutely fascinated by the use of screens to access images and memories.

“Looking at my old jpegs on my camera phone, I really began thinking about the way that the digital photo is ubiquitous in our lives,” says Steciw, reached at her Brooklyn studio. “These images on cameras and computers are at once so much a part of us, and yet they never really find their way into the actual world.”

Beach Boy

If life is a beach for Wavves frontman Nathan Williams, the last two years have brought soaring swells along with some gnarly riptides.

Back in 2008, equipped with a Macbook and lack of better things to do, Williams unwittingly set the music blogosphere abuzz with a few irreverent bursts of lo-fi stoner pop. His eponymous debut received nods from the scene’s most respected tastemakers, catapulting Wavves into indie fame before the 24-year-old even had a chance to move out of his parents’ San Diego home.

fish tank

REVIEW: Andrea Arnold – Fish Tank

Katie Jarvis never intended to appear in movies.

The now 18-year-old highschool dropout was discovered on a scummy East London subway platform while embroiled in a venomous spat with her boyfriend. With that in mind, it is no surprise the unlikely star bursts with raw teenage malice in the role of Mia, a young and underprivileged outcast living in a disheartening British slum . . .

REVIEW: Rob Pruitt – Pop Touched Me

Pop Touched Me is a self-conscious reflection upon artist Rob Pruitt’s implausible journey through fame and failure. From gallery-hosted flea markets to 101 test-driven art ideas, it seems oddly fitting that Pruitt’s playful and often participatory exhibitions have been immortalized in glossy coffee table reading. Now celebrated for painting shimmering panda bears, Pruitt was once excommunicated from New York’s art scene for a supposed racist homage to black American culture. (Evidently he and partner-in-crime Jack Early were terrible rappers) . . .

Animal   Instincts

They say grass is always greener on the other side. But for Swedish-born illustrator Daniel Egnéus—having already absorbed the beauty of London, Prague, Berlin, and Rome—the prettiest pastures exist in his dreams. “I always prefer to draw places and things I can’t go geographically,” he says, reached at his century-old home in Milan, Italy. “You have to draw them to imagine them—and then you can maybe feel a little bit safer, when you fantasize.” . . .

Ultraviolet

Twisted Sister

A little internet hype goes a long way.

Of all the buzzworthy artists floating around the blogosphere, this is especially true for Kid Sister. Within two short years, the Chicago MC went from selling baby clothes and stealing microphones at basement dance parties, to collaborating with Kanye West and performing at Coachella’s main stage. All this—plus a BET award nomination—went down before she released a debut album . . .

REVIEW: Art Deco Jewelry by Laurence Mouille­farine and Évelyne Possémé

The year is 1925. Times are good, skirts are short, and Parisian aesthetes are rocking bling so extravagant it would make Lil Wayne blush.

This is the heyday of Art Deco. With an ample appreciation for geometric shapes, editors Laurence Mouillefarine and Évelyne Possémé attempt to explain why so many Hollywood stars and fashionistas traded their traditional diamonds and gold for chunky onyx and platinum. The book also offers insights as to why the movement’s excesses eventually spelled doom for jewelry hucksters when the twenties suddenly stopped roaring.