Bob Staake, the author and illustrator of more than 50 children’s books, has reimagined the covers of kid-friendly classics from the 1940s, 50s, and 60s, giving each one a twist that is often more PG-13 than G and always darkly comical. With a simple off-beat quip and a slightly adjusted illustration, those once comforting, sweet tales of little trains that could and hungry little catepillars morph into something a little more sinister and a bit disconcerting. You know what? You can take a look at more of Staake’s “Bad Little Children’s Books” after the jump, while I go find a stuffed animal to hug.
Photographs so striking, they’re guaranteed to give you pause. That’s what Amsterdam-based art director and photographer Diego Arroyo achieves with a look, camera in-hand. Challenging himself to capture the subtle and the intimate in his images, Arroyo travels the globe – from Kenya to Cambodia – searching out the unique stories of strangers and seeking to catch the essence of a people, a place, a nation. Through his pause-giving photographs, it’s possible to visualize his personal efforts to highlight what is most real, as well as the passion that drives the process. Among his more recent works is a photographic series documenting his time among the Samburu, a semi-nomadic pastoralist people, as well as his visit to Lamu, an island along the northern coast of Kenya. Long after their time, the hauntingly intense stares, gentle smiles, and curiosity-furrowed brows of Kenya’s Samburu and the people of Lamu live on in these beautiful images. See more after the jump, and be sure to check out the photographer’s recent series taken in Cambodia by heading over to his Behance page.
New York City-based artists’ collective Mosstika cleverly reintroduces the jungle to the urban by covering ordinary steel and concrete surfaces with green, living graffiti made of real live grass and moss. The eco-minded, guerilla street artists primarily operate within New York City, the ultimate urban jungle. The collective is led by artist Edina Tokodi whose own Japanese Zen-inspired installations explore the interconnectedness of nature and the humanmade, inorganic world.
About its creations the collective says: “We believe that if everyone had a garden of their own to cultivate, we would have a much more balanced relation to our territories. It is with this notion in mind, that we at Mosstika, aim to collide the worlds of art and nature, creating havens of unexpected greenery, within the colder harsher environment. Together we aim to give green guerrilla tactics a new twist by creating works meant to be touched, in turn aiming to touch the souls of all that pass by. We strive to call back to mind a more playful existence, returning man to nature, even among the barren patches of urban existence.”
(via Visual News)
Recent Ontario College of Art and Design graduate Sarah Joncas already has a distinct, characteristic style that has earned her several awards, as well as garnered the attentions of top galleries around the US. Her paintings often focus on a lone woman, drawing out her narrative in a combination of bold hues and shadowy tones. The themes explored in her works are at times dark but at other times quite whimsical. Currently, the Toronto-based artist is representing Canada in an all-female group show entitled ‘International Woman’ which can be caught at the UK’s Warrington Museum now through July 7th. Living on this side of the pond, as they say? Then check out the artist’s upcoming joint show with fellow painter Caia Koopman, opening June 16th at Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City, California.
Originally from Armenia, artist Ana Bagayan studied illustration at California’s Art Center College of Design. Her many paintings and drawings are populated with doll-like youths and human-alien hybrids, showcasing the artist’s special interest in the metaphysical. In particular, many of her hybrid creatures were inspired by the stories told by avowed alien abductees while under hypnosis. Bagayan’s drawings and paintings have been displayed in galleries across the US, including most recently at Thinkspace Gallery in Culver City, California. Take a look at more metaphysical marvels after the jump.
Photographer Alison Scarpulla understands the strange power and intriguing beauty of decay. She transforms her already beautiful photographs into even more striking images not by Photoshop, but by her own unorthodox sorcery. In order to achieve a desired effect, Scarpulla sometimes uses expired film, while at other times she smears her lens with dirt. Additionally, she has been known to blow smoke on or drip everything from water to acid on negatives. Her unusual experiments make for excitingly unique and especially beautiful images of all things odd and occult.
German brothers Qbrk and Nerd make up the artistic duo extraordinaire known as Low Bros. With their awesome creative powers combined, they save urban spaces from being dreadfully dull, leaving their instantly recognizable geometric characters on walls and canvases around Germany and beyond. If you like what you see here, then be sure to check out their respective websites for more creative inspiration!
Japanese photographer Takeshi Suga captures dreamlike scenes that remind of warm summer days and tranquil walks beneath branches arrayed with cherry blossoms. Each photograph is like a sweet confection, served with a healthy helping of nostalgia and comfort and ready to be enjoyed. (Via The Fox is Black)