ARTisSpectrum | Volume 29 | artisspectrum.com
89
L
os Angeles-based artist
Gabe Tong
was born with eyesight
problems that might have resulted in blindness, but instead
his unique vision has allowed him to develop what he calls 3D
Cubism, a startling take on the 20th century movement augmented
with a kaleidoscopic palette and the dynamism of Futurism. In oil
compositions whose subjects span classical imagery like musicians,
portraits and still lifes to more contemporary fodder like motorcycles,
racers and Hollywood cinema, he turns Cubism’s characteristic
flatness on its head, imbuing each painting with texture, curvature
and eye-popping dimensionality. Through effects like shading and
gradients, he sets his arrangements of geometric forms into thrilling
motion.
Indeed, the moniker “3D Cubism” couldn’t be more apt, as Tong’s
paintings not only restore motion to the typically stilled style, but also
inject depth into a traditionally flat aesthetic. Full of folds, joints and
crevices, his works often trick the viewer into initially mistaking them
for bas-relief sculptures. His powerful manipulation of light is partly
responsible for this optical sleight of hand, with the sharp contrast
between bright and dark and muted and bold sections suggesting
shadows and reflections playing off projecting surfaces. Tong brings
Cubism into the 21st century.
Playground at Sandyhook Oil on Canvas 48” x 36”
Gabe Tong
S
ylvio Tabet
describes his lively photography
as a portrayal of “suspended reality” in which
everything visible — a splash of color, a head turned
just so, a repetition or juxtaposition of images — has
rich meaning. Tabet’s main subjects are the natural
world and the everyday scenes of our modern world.
His shots are carefully composed and studiously
focused, usually looking at a single object at close
range. The photo then goes through an exacting
editing process of deleting background noise,
layering images, and adding and enhancing colors,
until what is left is a beautifully streamlined and yet
heightened version of the real thing.
All of these images are perfectly recognizable. Yet
the way in which the artist approaches and deals
with each of his subjects makes the works into something significant, even challenging. Each piece represents a specific
message or idea which Tabet subtly introduces through images which are enticing for their visual effect alone. Tabet’s recent
explorations into the diptych composition allow him to play with doubling and contrasting even more confrontationally,
and with a more intense emotional palette.
Tabet was born in Beirut, Lebanon and today, after much traveling, lives and works in Los Angeles. He is also an accomplished
director.
Heat Archival Inkjet Print on Matte Paper 29.5” x 39.5”
Sylvio Tabet
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