Who says bubble wrap is just for packaging or stress relief? New York-based artist Bradley Hart, known for creating amazingly realistic pixelated portraits, has expanded his bubble wrap painting series Impressions to include recreations of iconic masterpieces such as Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa, Johannes Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring, and Vincent van Gogh's Self Portrait with Grey Felt Hat.
Each painting takes an average of 150 painstaking hours to complete. It takes two or three days just to fill up thousands of syringes with acrylic paint. Hart then injects each individual bubble with paint, taking care not to do it too quickly or slowly. As the paint is injected, the excess drips down the back of the piece. Upon completion of the bubble wrap painting, Hart peels away the dripping to reveal an imprint of the work, which becomes a part of his series Impressions. He says, “Viewed together, the pieces each seem to engage the other and the viewer becomes an observer of a relationship created between the two.”
Hart's pixelated paintings reference today's digital culture and the virtual way we lead our lives. Most images nowadays are seen on screens in the form of endless pixels and digital code. Each individual bubble is representative of that code. According to Cavalier Gallery, where Hart will be exhibiting his new paintings starting on May 7, “Seeing digital replications through a screen breaks down these famous paintings into the same pattern of 1s and 0s. By using this unique medium and technique, Hart is reimagining these Master works by turning them into something modern and fresh.”