Saturday, July 24, 2010

Aurora Andrews Paints the City

I wanted to share this great find that I came across through The City Fix of watercolour painter, Aurora Andrews, who has captured some really great moments of city life, most notably on public transportation.

People watching on public transit can be a rich, disturbing, melancholy and hilarious experience as it is used by such a large cross-section of society, and Andrews paints all these moments perfectly. I wonder if she does the paintings right there on the train, or if she takes a photo surreptitiously and then does them later. I can imagine painting on the train (aside from being difficult with all the jolts and movement) would be a pretty conspicuous activity.

I also like her Grids paintings, one of which, a sidewalk with the tell-tale shadows of gum stamped into it, appears here:

Other great albums are her Moving to New York, Boston, and Brooklyn. What impresses me most about these is that she takes moments or pieces of the city that we might consider as mundane and turns them into something worthy of focus. In her Boston album, for example, there is a painting of a fusebox on a wooden pole with a slice of a brick building in the background, a scene that is a dime a dozen in most cities, but which seems elegant and charming in Andrews' watercolour.

This reminds me of another urban artist, Ingo Giezendanner, who published a book of his city sketches called Urban Recordings published by Passenger Books. His are all ink drawings, but the complexity and detail as well as the wobbliness of the freehand sketches lend a certain funkiness to the scenes.

More of Aurora's work can be found on her blog,

No comments:

Post a Comment