Some artists have it, and some Artists deserve that particular capital A in artist, no two ways about it, really. And, safe to say, Dominic Beyeler and Elly Smallwood, a pair of decidedly differing Instagram Artists, have taken their art to the next level, and then something far more special and with it a little icing placed delicately atop of it all. You cannot compare these particular artists. However, what you can absolutely do is to put their art side by side within a descriptive and detailed article in furthermore saluting the utter sensical brilliance at play. This is art that takes you to a place inside of your adolescent, untainted imagination which may have been otherwise rather unrecognisable for its total worth – breathing a brand spanking new life right on through it, if you will let it permit itself to do such a remarkable thing.
These are portraiture faces, and otherwise, that seem to have very nearly painted their very own picture, scripture, and managing to catch you off-guard, all awhile enticing your colour coordination. Art that breathes right in front of you eyes is, put plain and put simply, deliciously, delightfully comprehensible. What might seem to have been such an easy task for them to land will make you question your very own art, if you are that way inclined and that way critical of your own work. You should be, because this is a masterclass of an undeniably large variety. Radical happenings, indeed.
Let’s start with Elly Smallwood – a Canadian-born Artist who happily, even deliriously, goes about her day job as though it were her whole wide world. Most probably, I am guessing, because it is just that thing. You even see it from the beautiful black-inked rose tattoo upon her left-hand – a lot like her art, in fact. When life mirrors art, mirrors life. To find an artist capable of bringing my imagination regards putting my fictional style to the hilt of its testings is an exceptional achievement on her part all of its thankful own. Elly’s multitude of utensils, her plain downright learned ability when it comes to putting down upon empty canvas what her mind-of-many asks to witness and see, is second to very few, I am sure of it. Therein lies an invaluable and inexplicable hunger within her still young and tirelessly thirsty soul; a real, living, breathing, oft than not seething wish to adhere to her very own invaluable aforementioned lessons in mass construction. And it is mass, albeit amidst drilled masterclass and this deserves to be duly noted as I go. It begs the question though, of course, but if she is this good right this minute, then what on Earth might she be like as an artist in the years about to follow her concentrated artistic trail?
Elly brings something new and visually unputdownable to the table of Instagram art – something sweet at being merciless and righteously reckless, too. Her art matters because it says something gracious about itself and the artist all in one go, like all good art really should attempt to accomplish and do, both with and for itself. Time again, if it can.
Hopscotch Art, I like to call it because it plays about with your mind aside imagination like it were a puppet on a constantly meandering, dancing string which runs delicately between her fingers for portrayal. There will always and forever be your favourite painting, or paintings, maybe even, which belong to an Artist, but when a painting can feel truly as though it were belonging to your own ownership, then that is job done ten times over. Elly runs relatively against the grain of her being and with her own style of reckoning altogether, and that is quite extraordinarily distinguishable. Now and then, you do see that she continues to have her detractors – those persnickety people who believe that the naked body is much too much for someone to be showcasing upon the internet. Don’t blame these people though, nor the artist of course, but rather what the taciturn internet has done regards its representation of mere nakedness apart from it being showcased within an artistic medium. She will work this all into the canvas, no holds barred; this girl is here, above all else, to learn, learn, learn some more. Til learning goes from fashion. Impossible, of course; how could it ever. Too much happening, too much going on about the world to have to even consider worrying about that minutiae detail around all of the others at play.
Dominic Beyeler does quite a lot of the same as Elly does. In a manner, at least. This thirty-something artist goes toe-to-toe with his better, more judged senses and, again, it feels incredibly real and right in front of the viewer’s eye-line. To really recognise the foundation of excellence-in-waiting, you will need to actually sit yourself down and get to witnessing the colours at quarrelling play, the undoubted aptitude which subtly starts to begin at speaking for itself. Self-representation at its finest moment, perhaps? Both artist aside the art. In it together. Unforgettable. Unable to ignore it. Dominic, it appears, is most comfortable inside of a studio, wherein he sets the scene inside of his mind of minds. His is a sterilised kind of kindly art in that there are no mischievous undertones which other international artist who carry with them less confidence might feel the need to throw into the mix. Cat amongst the pigeons stuff, indeed. None of that occurring here of course.
Am I overstating just how good these two artists are? You have every right to ask. Doubtful though. Others won’t all understand, or even manage to comprehend what my imagination lets itself do when it comes to Elly’s and Dominic’s art, and that is perfectly okay too. Although, I do finally understand why certain people wish for a particular artist not to ‘sell their soul to the Devil’ per say, in creating something entirely outside of their usual jurisdiction just so as to please a peculiar commission. We get comfortable: happy, settled with what we have all along been seeing courtesy of the hands that we have come to entrust upon. The hands that rock the cradles of our over-enthused brains. They will steal a piece of each one of us while also giving it back tenfold.
Watch this space, because space is all that these two artists have, and at that a world of it, and it is the most precious thing to allow ourselves to divulge in. You can check out both Elly’s and Dominic’s work on Instagram at @ellysmallwood and @beyelerdominic. Enjoy, because I am, and have been doing so a fair while now.
Next up – Shane Wolf, American painter.