Prepare to see the coolest video ever. Music meets new media in the most clever of ways in Neurosonics. Someone please send me more info on this project!!!
A Common Name is a Los Angeles based graphic designer and artist whose decidedly different take on street art is anything but common. In contrast to traditional 2-D street art materials like wheat paste and spray paint, she takes to the streets with bright geometric forms reminiscent of geodes, comprised completely of paper. Seeming to grow out of cracks and crevices in the eroded urban landscape, these pieces are suprisingly subtle and fragile treasures likely to be overlooked by those caught up in the constant hustle of city life. Treasure hunters and urban explorers can track down these tiny gems and peek into the painstaking process with which they’re made by checking out A Common Blog.
In the series Paint Job, Spanish art director Nico Ordozgoiti infuses some color onto Renaissance statues. He digitally paints them in a hyperrealistic style and brings them to life. Iconic sculptures like David and Venus de Milo are now fair-skinned with chestnut brown hair instead of their usual off-white exterior. The visual effect is similar to the colorization of black-and-white photographs, and Ordozgoiti’s vibrant colors are offset by a gray base.
Ordozgoti writes, “When Renaissance masters discovered and copied the hyper-realistic sculptures of ancient Greek and Rome, they didn’t know that some of these works had originally been painted to make them even more life-like.” Ultraviolet light reveals how these pieces really look. He goes on to explain, “This made me think about how adding color to classic and neoclassical sculptures could give us an interesting look at what some of those artists might have had in mind.” (Via Ufunk)
Art directors Anaïs Boileau and Samuel Volk are the dream team when it comes to creating short and snappy campaign ideas. This time around they have used their skills to benefit The World Wildlife Fund in a project called WWF/Botanimal. With flawless Photoshopping technique, they have camouflaged images of endangered animals into forested landscapes. With the tagline “Donate to save a tree and save 875,000 species for free”, this is one clever visual narrative detailing a worthy cause. Boileau and Volk show us exactly what these beautiful environments would be without the animals roaming around within them.
Boileau is also responsible for another campaign with a responsible message. Called WWF/WeWantFurniture.com, she imagined a brand and designed a corresponding website “selling” wood to customers. Apparently from all wood sold, 40 percent is made from illegal wood. She devised a very effective way to show customers the ecological effects of buying cheap furniture. The effects of deforestation can be devastating, as we are reminded in this new campaign also.
Working with creative directors in a commercial environment, Boileau and Volk are able to maximize their reach to a large audience, and come up with visually interesting answers to complex questions. Boileau sums her work up nicely:
[Impassioned] by craft and art direction; I have been lucky to work with talented photographers, retouchers and CGI artists. The best part of my job is to imagine visual universes, and find creative solutions.
Henry Ford’s Digital Collections Initiatives Manager Ellice Engdahl recently wrote about one of his favorite artifacts of the 18,000 published online: The Monkey Bar diorama. This diorama was created by a man known as Patrick J. Culhane (various spellings) in 1914-15 during his time at the Massachusetts State Prison at Charlestown where he’d been sent after a conviction of “larceny from a conveyance.” Culhane carved and assembled this incredibly detailed piece of prison art by hand from a variety of materials, including peach pits, and scraps of wood, fabric, metal, cellulose, and plastic, all fitting into a base measuring only 16″ x 20″.
Engdahl notes that Monkey Bars were created by other prisoners in the early 20th century, and that “Culhane intended the diorama to depict many of the worldly pitfalls that had put him and his fellow inmates on a path to prison. The Bar is chock full of monkeys engaged in all kinds of rambunctious activities—drinking alcohol, gluttonous eating, smoking (cigarettes, cigars, and opium), gambling and gaming in many forms (craps, roulette, checkers, shell game, and cards), playing music, monitoring the stock market via a ticker, and even paying off a policemonkey. Clearly some of the monkeys are ready to check into (or out of) the associated hotel, as they have their suitcases with them and keys and mail are visible behind the desk.”
After Culhane finished his piece, he arranged to have it sent to Henry Ford, with a hand-written note, “Presented to Mr. Henry Ford / As a token of appreciation and esteem for his many benevolent and magnanimous acts toward, and keen interest in, prisoners / By A Prisoner.”
Engdahl surmises that Ford became interested in Culhane, and may have a hand in his release from prison, as Culhane was hired to work at the Ford Motor Company in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1916 and Ford’s secretary corresponded with Culhane regularly.
One of my favorite artists Ai Kijima will be having a solo show at 212 Gallery in Aspen August 1st. More info about the show after the jump and if you love Ai’s work you can still get a copy of Beautiful/Decay Issue: R which features a full length interview with Ai about her pop culture infused works that are painstakingly sewn together from various fabrics.
Hilary Harnischfeger’s relief paintings and sculptures make me think of ancient topographic maps with a dab of Richard Diebenkorn tossed into the mix for good measure.
Los Angeles based artist Adi Putra takes you to an ethereal dreamland embedded in enigma, euphoria and that quintessential Southern California aura of bliss. It is no mystery why he frequently works with musicians such as Moby, L.A. Witch, Kimbra and The Vivian Girls — his style is fluid, loud, reverberating and ultimately undeniably cool. His work acts as the embodiment of warmth and mischievous freedom. It is images like these that save our souls from wilting during these bleak and bone chilling winter months. In moments of cold season melancholia, Putra reminds us, through an alluring controlled chaos, what true creativity and passion feels like. With titles such as Spring Fever, Valley of the Wind, and Dreamcatcher, his work pictorially creates that undeniable feeling of youthful excitement. That one you get sitting on a porch, drinking a beer as the sun starts to rise, filled with a quiet thrill for what’s to come. Almost like a vintage, punk rock Ryan McGinley, Putra is able to create striking images that demand attention through glorifying the beauty in youth and purity of nature. His work, romanticized with quiet tones of sepia matched with hints of ultraviolet hues of hippie energetic galore, hits every note aesthetically thrived for. Each piece is truly blissful, sinister and perfectly raw.