In their collection „United in Gold”, the artistic duo of Alexander Straulino and Akke Visschers combine painting and photography to create a truly unique series of portraits. Their subjects are captured on film before being augmented with painted details. Using various tools, from palette knives to paintbrushes, gold paint is applied directly to the portraits. The result is an experimental fusion of artistic mediums. The gold becomes an intrinsic part of the photographs, enhancing the overall effect and elevating them from traditional portrait photography to genre-defying works of art.
The technique that gives the artworks of „United in Gold” their unique character has been dubbed “overprinting” by its creators. By combining traditional and digital methods, entirely new ideas can be brought to light. Straulino shoots the portraits before Visschers enriches them with paint and color and the results are re-shot under studio lighting. The artworks blur the line between reality and fiction, challenging our preconceptions about both photography and painting. Together, they showcase the fascinating relationship between the mediums.
Though the brushstrokes appear light and spontaneous, the entire process is a highly precise feat of technical and artistic skill. The duo will spend countless hours on each artwork, finely adjusting the paintwork to create the completed piece. Only when both are totally satisfied with the combination of paint and portraiture will they photograph it.
Alexander Straulino is an internationally renowned photographer and frequent collaborator with New York’s Trunk Archive. His works question our ideas of beauty standards through his characteristically intense portraits. His highly sought-after photographs have featured on the covers of several magazines including Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.
Akke Visschers is a visual artist and experienced material designer. As well as her artistic projects, she has founded a successful jewelry line and received awards for her design work.
Together, Straulino and Visschers founded STUDIO AKKINO. The “overprinting” technique is a trademark feature of their work, receiving recognition and acclaim from the beauty, art and fashion worlds.