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Hassan Hajjaj’s All-Girl Moroccan Biker Gang

Hassan Hajjij - Metallic Lambda on 3 mm white Dibond

Hassan Hajjaj - Metallic Lambda on 3 mm white Dibond

Hassan Hajjaj - Metallic Lambda on 3 mm white Dibond

Hassin Hajjij - Metallic Lambda on 3 mm white Dibond

Photographer Hassan Hajjaj‘s latest project focuses on the sub culture of young women bikers from Marrakesh. Titled the “Kesh Angels”, he created striking images of groups of women wearing colorful veils and djellabah straddling worn scooters and motorbikes.
They represent something quite traditional, yet also astoundingly subversive and daring.

The women all hold strong poses, and are somewhat confrontational. Hajjaj places them within bright and beautiful frames – choosing different images and symbols from the Medina, all with a distinct Pop Art feel.

Primarily a portrait photographer, Hajjaj is well versed in bringing out the colorful character of his subjects. He started his career taking photos of friends, artists, musicians and strangers on the streets of Marrakesh. His style perfectly embodies the social, active and vitality of the culture in northern Africa, while offering a glimpse into the more unknown aspects.

Using a slight hip hop influence, Hajjaj also reflects on issues of consumerism, branding and globalization and how these issues affect a place like Morocco. The subtlety and humor he uses to approach such complex subjects is very effective. Seeing these women in traditional clothing, branded with Nike is unsettling at the very least – and that’s not even mentioning the motorbike in the middle of the scenario. Engaging in what is usually a male dominated activity, these women are breaking many taboos, and display an easy confidence about it all.

Hajjaj has been involved in many projects aimed at raising awareness of the treatment and roles of women in Morocco. With such a strong visual language, he is definitely succeeding in capturing our attention.

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Jana Brike’s Uncanny Paintings Capture The Strangeness Of True Love And Sacrifice

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In her series Winter of Love, the Latvian painter Jana Brike reimagines the The Biblical Salome, known for the seduction of King Harod and her bloodthirsty demand for the head of Saint John the Baptist, transforming the icon from infamous sinner to innocent wood nymph, small and delicate as a china doll. Subverting the religious, moral text, she creates a poignant story of intimacy, love, and sacrifice.

In Brike’s eerie narrative, Saint John is replaced by a make-believe Deer King, a creature who harkens back to medieval Christian bestiaries, his horns often serving as a metaphor for Christ’s cross and Crucifixion. Here, the Deer King falls in love with Salome, volunteering his body for her pleasure: “he keeps squandering his life forces to grow flowers from his body, for the nymphs to play with,” explains the artist. In the place of a violent, lusty, and sinful Salome, the artist presents a naive, pure-hearted child who is transfixed by her play and the beauty of flowers.

In this touching biblical allegory, love becomes sacred and tragic; the Deer King offers his head to his beloved, giving her sensual bliss in a bitter, cold winter. The season becomes symbolic of his death, until flora miraculously begins to bloom, as with the mythical Resurrection of Christ. The creative powers of the girl blossom; she is seen as fertile, emerging into womanhood, her lips and vital cheeks pink as the roses.

Using the framework of religious text, Brike’s body of work depicts a romance story where love necessitates sacrifice, where lust isn’t sinful but creative. Nurtured by the Deer King’s affections and tragic death, Salome grows into adulthood; in one image titled “Nurseling,” her dress slips, revealing a pair of milk-filled, life-giving breasts. Take a look. (via MondoPop)

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Jason Hackenwerth’s Massive Balloon Sculpture

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These are much more than simple balloon animals.  Jason Hackenwerth‘s creations float like giant swimming organisms.  His newest creature, Pisces, which recently debuted at the Edinburgh International Science festival is particularly massive.  Pisces is built of thousands of balloons blown up and tied together.  It took three of members of the festival six days to blow up all of the balloons for the 40 foot structure.  The piece now hangs in the Grand Gallery of the National Museum of Scotland through April 14, 2013.

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This Is What People Would Look Like If They Were Shredded Into Thin Lines

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“Scribbled Line People” is a digital collaboration between New York-based illustrator Ayaka Ito and programmer Randy Church. Part of a “3D Motion and Particle” course, the two decided to embark on this project after discussing how to create an interface that could incorporate 3D scribbled lines into photography. Mutually inspired by Rachel Ducker’s wire sculptures and Erik Natzke’s Flash paintings, the duo uses both Flash and Photoshop to reconfigure photographic subjects into shredded images that are gracefully incorporated into their background compositions. Ito says, “Our objective in approaching the visual, was to create a series of answers to show how scribbled lines could develop normal portraits into abstract art.” (via the creator’s project)

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Awesome Video Of The Day: My New Furry Friend

This lil cute guy will provide exactly 25 seconds of visual delight. Watch him go round and round after the jump!

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Studio Visit: Mark Schoening

Mark Schoenig painting studio visit

Mark Schoening has been busy in the studio lately working on a brand spanking new series of paintings and a new sculpture for a show opening this weekend at Blythe Projects in Culver City, Ca. He was kind enough to document the process and give you a sneak peak.

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Awesome Video Of The Day: Elektrotechnique

No clue what’s going on in this video but it seems like a good way to start Saturday morning!

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The Creative Portraiture of Lauren Randolph

Collaboration With Ryan Schude

Collaboration With Ryan Schude

Lauren Randolph is a creative portrait photographer based out of Los Angeles, she is also known by her nick-name, “Lauren Lemon.” Using props and scenery, she highlights and emphasizes the features of her subjects, creating more than just a portrait but a story. Check out more of her images after the jump.

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