A pink-blushed evening in the city, ventilator fans whirring lazily, cars zipping across a distant bridge. Single-pixel dust particles, blinking into and out of existence in sunlight streaming through an open door. Leaves falling, water moving – in all its forms – puddles, rain, reflections. A plastic bottle standing up attentively on the pavement, convincing in its transparency. The neon gloop of a lava lamp in a stuff-cluttered room, glowing incense-stick tips – their wisps of smoke crawling up towards a King Crimson poster on the wall.
A pixel (picture [pix] element [el]) on its own can seem inconsequential. Yet, when gathered together in great quantities, pixels can be used to suggest entire worlds – brimming with life. Staggeringly, in each of her captivating artworks pixel artist Valeriya Sanchilo – also known as Waneella – uses an estimated 129,600 pixels. Waneella came to pixel art in 2013, when she became fascinated with the hyper-minimalistic, yet incredibly detailed, world portrayed in the game Superbrothers: Sword & Sworcery EP. She loved that, in pixel art, everything is suggestive, that the imperfections and simplicity imposed by the restrictive medium ‘leaves space for the imagination to make it look just perfect’. In this way, every scene is a collaboration between artist and audience.
The majority of Waneella’s countless works have recast the background as the spectacle of the scene. It always puzzled her that backgrounds could be found everywhere in theatre, film and animation, but were never celebrated in and of themselves. She works mostly from her imagination, but also draws on a rich treasure trove of visual and musical influences – from Wong Kar Wai, David Lynch, Studio Ghibli and Liam Wong to Mazzy Star, Broadcast and Portishead – incorporating photographic lighting, subtle animation and ambient music into her pieces.
Waneella’s first monograph is a must-have portal into the world of her pixel art, documenting a decade of work as well as exploring the technical detail and inspiration behind her astounding craft.
Specification280 × 210mm
Printing in 5 colours
Two paper stocks