Chadwick Tyler, Niall O'Brien, 2022
Chadwick Tyler is an American multi-faceted photographer: occupying a prominent position in both fashion and street photography. As a fashion photographer, he has shot for luxury designer labels Marc Jacobs, Alexander Wang, and Balenciaga, among others. In 2015, Tyler photographed international star Lady Gaga for V Magazine’s 99th-anniversary issue cover. As a street photographer, his work has gained a notable reputation for its candor and immediacy. Tyler directly captures his subjects—who are frequently from the small-town South—depicting them exactly as they are while concurrently disclosing something more, beyond what is initially apparent. The most recent series by the photographer is the compelling “God’s People,” which focuses entirely on the Southern United States. Whether working with high-fashion models or Floridian patrons of the strawberry festival in Plant City, he applies the same atmospheric aesthetic to his subjects: ethereal, urgent, and honest.
Niall O’Brien is an Irish artist whose output consists of everything pictorial: he is a photographer and filmmaker, creating singular short films such as “Angel Falls” (2021)
and has had multiple solo and group photography exhibits. In 2019, prior to the death of famous Louis Vuitton fashion designer and Off-White founder, Virgil Abloh, O’Brien was included in his curated group exhibition “Coming of Age.” This show, which was re-released in 2022 after Abloh’s passing, featured work from various note-worthy photographers themed on the “formative years of boyhood.”
Much of O’Brien’s early photography centers on global subcultures, such as the series “Good Rats” (2010), which documents adolescent punks in London. In an interview, O’Brien characterized this work as an “honest sociology project” that emerged from a need to “recapture” his youth. Other, more recent series, such as “405” (2022) and “Blue Crawfish” (2017), emphasize community with a similar uncompromising sociological perspective. O’Brien’s ability to genuinely connect with his subjects and embed himself in their communities gives him unique access to the inner happenings of their lives, imbuing his work with a certain emotiveness and distinct sense of reality.
The synthesis of O’Brien and Tyler makes VELVET FINGERS a dynamic and arresting collection.
Frank Dorrey, 2021
A mix of digital illustration and photo collage, often done in bed while YouTube videos play in the background, Dorrey’s work upends all expectation and definition. He only pursues an idea if he can’t resist the impulse to begin, leading to explosive images that can hardly be contained inside the two dimensional surface. It’s this sense of urgency that makes the images so compelling, drawing your eyes endlessly to the work.
Dorrey spends hours at a time creating a single piece. Somewhere inside them lurks a secret visual language that the artist has developed over the years, a kind of personal mythology that links colors and imagery into a mode of acid-bathed storytelling.
The sheer freedom of his imagination is immediately recognizable and fascinating, giving rise to an aesthetic entirely Dorrey’s own. The oversaturated colors and digital distortions are concrete things we can point to, but the dramatic shifts in subject matter and emotional tones keep us from ever feeling like we completely understand the artist.
Halsi is a self-taught artist and designer based out of Orlando, Florida. Halsi's controversial work includes a human-like figure/icon titled "Everyone" - painted in two-dimensional compositions of color. Halsi's work is said to be an allegorical combination of nature and love, of life and death. Reflected in his work is the idea of morality as easy to grasp but hard to hold onto given the struggles of occupational and environmental pressures. Halsi's signature "Everyone" icon is just as likely to be seen in fine art galleries, as on urban streets throughout the country. His work has been consistently met with equal parts praise and criticism. Nonetheless, Halsi continues to explore everyone.