I’ve been a huge fan of William Schaff’s flickr photostream for a while. It’s a high-energy, frenetic collection of his artwork, tattoo designs, sketches, tableau vivant photographs, studio scenes, posters and his amazing stitching, like this soulful centaur that the artist was commissioned to create.
The heavy fill stitch and rich colors of What Centaur? gives the piece a Fauvist quality. The composition, with the red, flame-like rays bursting out behind the figure, reminds me of Latin American saint iconography, like a particularly lush Virgin of Guadeloupe. And Schaff’s intense stitching somehow suggests sound… I can easily imagine the wail of the trumpet and the thump of the hooves in a night time field.
Spend time with his edgy photostream and you will see into playful, colorful world of a trickster, an artist, an original.
Olisa Corcoran is a stitch artist and blogger living in Durham, NC. She speaks fluent Nuyorican and always keeps her dial turned to 11.