Moving artistically into photography as a natural extension of his sculptural practice, Kristian Kozul meticulously builds and then photographs, physical dioramas of extraordinary detail designed to tell metaphoric stories and reconstruct histories. As with his earlier sculptures, where concept meets articulation a kind of fetishized totem results. Each piece is based on a certain historical figure that Kozul leverages in pursuit of his cause. Like Captain Ahab and Moby Dick, or famously Don Quixote and his windmills, the fixations and obsessions of Kozul’s protagonist’s speak to universal themes of mania, obsession, and denial.
Okay Master Debators – we have a hot debate for you to weigh in on. We received a submission from John Malta. We think his work is really cool… but we can’t help but notice a similarity to Matt Leines. This illustration style seems to be popular nowadays. Is it just the current style or is John influenced by Leines? You can see some comparisons after the jump. We have no intention to bash John’s work, but we are interested to hear your opinions on the matter. What do you think?
Adam Helms is known for drawing radicals and constructing ominous wooden watch towers. His current project is a series of 48 charcoal portraits in response to Gerhard Richter’s “48 Portraits.” Richter’s work used encyclopedia photos to catalog the iconic males of Western culture. Helms is also cataloging icons, but shifts focus to the dangerous fringes where civil wars and insurrections take place. Ranging over the entire political spectrum, from anti-establishment and anti-government groups to official government troops, Helms’ portraits are intentionally politically ambiguous, stating “The politics are less interesting to me then this idea of a repeated identity.”
The “illuminati” is at it again! Not really, but you may think so once you see the levitating all seeing eye created by artist Guy W. Bell. He has created a real-life, levitating “Eye of Providence,” featured on the back of the U.S. one dollar bill. Made from slate veneer and distressed brass, the pyramid Bell has created is split in two, with the top half literally levitating, thanks to innovative technology involving two magnets of the same charge. Because of these repelling magnets, the top section of the pyramid not only levitates, but can also spin, giving this “Eye of God” a 360-degree view. This panoramic line of sight can be seen through the eye in the pyramid, which contains a wireless, pinhole camera, giving the phrase “the all seeing eye” a whole new meaning. The eye itself is actually a prosthetic, larger than life eye replica created by ocularist and anaplastologist Michel D. Kackowski.
The Eye of Providence has been referred to as an illuminati or Freemason symbol, and was also commonly used in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. This symbol has become such a cult image, it is amazing to see a fairly large scale, levitating, moving sculpture that really does look back at you with its uncanny and familiar eye.
A talented painter, Bell had been interested in this idea of creating this infamous symbol, but had not yet made a sculpture of this technological magnetite. Luckily for Bell, with the help of the Arkansas Regional Innovation Hub, he was able to make his dream a reality. This incredible sculpture can be seen at Bell’s solo exhibition Fourteen Minutes and Forty-Nine Seconds presented by the Thea Foundation in Arkansas. (via The Creators Project)
Merging sound and landscape, Ukrainian architect and designer Anna Marinenko has created a series of images – called “Nature Sound Form Wave” – that presents juxtapositions of sound waves alongside panoramas of sky, water, mountain, and tree lines. Marinenko’s pairings demonstrate the synchronicity and parallels to be found in different patterns among natural and manufactured designs, the similarity between the forms remarkably uncanny. Because Marinenko meticulously lines up the designs and maintains the same color palette throughout the images, ocean waves, flight paths, and landscapes appear to be transforming into the sound waves, the transition nearly seamless. (via design boom)
Los Angeles photographer Dan Busta has a couple very interesting photographic series exploring single-themed concepts at length. This one, Dots, is fairly self explanatory: naked women covered in dots, posing within rooms also covered in dots. What the images offer is part optical illusion and part good old fashioned sensuality. The natural beauty of the models stripped down to the most basic elements of form and pose. Through his exploration of this distinct concept, and through the manipulation of dot and background colors, Busta harnesses a unique way to showcase the beauty of these women in a flattering way.
Busta is no stranger to photographing people. He has photographed the rich and famous, his website is a yearbook of actors and celebrities we know and love. Another interesting project of his, Ghosts, shows a white-clothed figure standing in various settings. Busta’s exploration of themed projects continues to be a strong point in his work, and something that sets him apart as a photographer. It’s exciting to think of what he will do next!
Initially inspired by an accidental discovery of Marilyn Monroe’s image embedded within the frames of Shinobi—a classic SEGA console game from 1987 Japan—Atlanta-based artist Ashley Anderson‘s multi-media exploration of the icon’s 8-bit image skims across the realm of painting, drawing, collage and animated gifs. The glitchy, pixelled-out nature of the images is indicative of Anderson’s 8-bit aesthetic, but this new body of work somehow begins to morph, to twist, and to move into something more obscure. Loaded with fragments of late 1980’s digital culture, some pieces only offer the faintest recollection of the image, requiring a bit more visual extraction to pull out the digitally reduced visage of Warhol’s Marilyn. As a whole, the investigation is an intriguing peek into the nature of digital reproduction and image appropriation.
Artist Takumi Kama is trying to confront and conquer his fears of high school girls by turning them into strange reptiles and animals. By anthropomorphizing teenage girls, he makes them less threatening and harmful. The Japanese drawer has imagined one girl as a snobby, gangly giraffe, holding it’s head up high and standing displeased with everything around it. He has drawn another one as a frightened armadillo huddled in the fetal position, looking terrified and uncomfortable. He has sketched the girls he would see on the train as a group of primates, absorbed in their cellphones; the book nerd in the school corridor is now an awkward frog beast holding her book in her weird hands, furry tail wrapped around a bottle of soda pop.
Kama has studied both the poses and mannerisms of the girls and also the beasts he has turned them into – combining them into one and the same. His immaculate pencil renderings create a convincing impression of these strange creatures, and it is easy to see them the way he does every time he encounters the demographic. Kama admits:
I am terrified of high school girls. If I encounter a group of them on a train there is a high possibility I will escape to another car. (Source)
This certain sub culture is often dissected, or referred to in popular Japanese culture. Called Joshi kōsei (女子高生) they feature in manga comics and videos as well as being fetishized in pornographic videos. Kama is also obsessed with the idea of this social group, but in his series Schoolgirl Animals, they are seen as something a bit more imaginative and humorous than the usual schoolgirl fantasy. The collection of his pencil drawings were on show at BAMI gallery in Kyoto until May 31, 2015, but you can still enjoy more of the images after the jump. (Via Spoon Tamago)