Ben Heine is a multidisciplinary visual artist in true sense. He can play drums, piano, guitar, can speak six languages, has a degree in journalism and most importantly can paint and photograph. Two very strong visual media of drawing and photography become unified to create fascinating pieces of art. Success of his project Pencil vs Camera, conceived in April, 2010, is a proof of that. Digital Circlism, another idea materialised around the same point in time blends the best of pop art and pointillism to recreate portraits of famous personalities such as Marilyn Monroe, Freddie Mercury, Johny Depp, Lady Gaga and so on. Flesh and Acrylic is one of his latest projects having started in 2011.
Like a multi-faceted diamond, Charlene Lanzel’s artistic mastery sparkles through her fine art paintings, murals, trompe l’œil, street painting and sand art to dazzle her audience. Born into a family of visual artists in La Crosse, Wisconsin in 1967 Charlene was published in an instruction book for elementary school art teachers by age 9. In 1985 she received the Senior Art Award and Art Scholarship from her high school in Onalaska, Wisconsin. In 1987 she relocated to New York. Year 1999 saw Charlene Lanzel painting Italian trompe l’œil murals for the Venetian Casino in Las Vegas, with fellow artist Tracy Lee Stum. The two also competed together at the prestigious XXVII Centro Italiano Madonnari Street Painting Festival in Mantova, Italy. The yearning to explore beyond the one frame image painted on canvas, Charlene was fascinated viewing sand animation when she first saw it in 2004. It is not until 2010 though that she embraced the idea of becoming a performance artist herself. Since then she is narrating timeless stories of love, festivities and even tragedies of life through this ephemeral art form.
Tracy holds a Guinness World Record for the largest street painting by an individual artist since 2006. As a ‘Madonnaro’ Tracy uses the grey asphalt as her canvas drawing 3d images with colourful chalks. Born in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Tracy got attracted to painting very early in her life. She studied privately as a child and completed a 4 year Bachelor’s degree program at Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. She continued her studies in naturalism at the Florence Academy of Art in Italy where she first experienced street painting. However, it is her visit to Madonnari Italian Street Painting Festival in Santa Barbara, California in 1997 that enthused and introduced her to the world of street painting as an artist. In her own words, ‘I have surely found a suitable medium to express my visions of mind and heart.’
Alister Benn loves travelling. Bird watching also held his fancy since his boyhood days. For years he crisscrossed the planet and visited some of the treacherous mountains in Himalayan range. In the process framing the frozen moments of many a menacing beauties such as Mt Everest, Mt Kailash, Dhaulagiri etc. Slowly but surely he started becoming increasingly curious about the mysteries of the night sky. He forayed into night photography capturing the faint whispers of the blinking stars up above from behind the camera lenses. On his many adventures since 2000, his wife Juanli Sun, an accomplished photographer herself, has been his active ally. To borrow Juanli’s words from her poem ‘Once’, they are ‘picturing this mysterious illusion’ of life treading the path together.
Born in 1969, Havana, Cuba, Cesar Augusto’s introduction to photography has been early through his father, a professional photographer himself. Throughout his teenage years he actively assisted and later worked for many of the studios in Havana. After graduating from Instituto Superior de Arte, Cuba’s most prestigious art university, with a major in Motion Picture Directing, in 1994 Cesar embarked on his journey to explore motion pictures and subsequently full time photography.