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Iran: A Nation Of Bloggers

A great infographic about Iranian bloggers

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The Incredible Decaying Remains Of The Soviet Space Shuttle Program

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A most fascinating thing has been found in Kazakhstan, Russia, by urban explorer Ralph Mirebs: the decaying shell of a space shuttle. The long-abandoned air craft was a part of a project called the Buran program. Launched in 1974 as part of the on-going international space race, this pet project of the Soviet Union was one of the largest and most expensive space exploration programs.

‘Buran’ is Russian for ‘snowstorm’ or ‘blizzard’ and a few prototypes of the shuttle were built (from plans stolen from NASA), but only one actually flew. Tens of millions of dollars were invested in this particular program, so it is such a shame to find the shuttle in such a demolished and forgotten state. Mirebs discovered this particular air craft in an old hangar that is still used by Russia today. It is located on a site called the Baikonur Cosmodrome, and is a launch pad for shuttles to reach the International Space Station.

This hangar is gigantic – at 433 feet long and 203 feet high, it has massive sliding doors on either end to let the shuttles out. Containing heavy duty cranes that can lift up to 400 tons, the building in itself is an incredible sight. Full of peeling paint, rusting beams and steel that can withstand shock waves from an explosion, the hangar is a piece of architecture that should be preserved.

Hopefully along with the publication of Mirebs’ photographs of this incredible discovery, someone will realize these historical artifacts need to be restored or at least protected from further decay and damage. Be sure to check out the amazing footage of the one and only shuttle launch in 1988 after the jump. (Via Bored Panda)

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Alejandro Cardenas’ Abstract Figures in Watercolor and Guache

Alejandro Cardenas, based in NYC, creates watercolor and guache works in which stark, flat figurative elements blend seamlessly with abstract flourishes and branches of washed out color. Set amidst a deep black background, this work stands out well. Too often, water based media is used as a generator of quaint atmosphere; whimsical drawings that take up very little space on paper or canvas. Cardenas’ work, conversely, is bold and fully composed where others may have defaulted into paltry understatement.

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Get Lost In Markus Linnenbrink’s Hypnotic Rainbow Installations

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New York-based German artist Markus Linnenbrink has created an enchanting installation which envelops visitors in a disorienting colorful pattern. Although not exactly in a ROYGBIV formation, this rainbow room, made of bold hues of acrylic paint covered in epoxy on resin, creates a unique experience for viewers. The piece above is named “WASSERSCHEIDE(DESIREALLPUTTOGETHER)” and is currently up in Germany at the art center Kunsthalle Nuernberg until October 12th.

Linnenbrink has worked within this use of line work and colors for much of his artistic career. While some of his shows have featured conventional paint on canvas work, he often utilizes the space to its maximum effect. Linnenbrink composes a piece of art one walks into, is a part of, and can see from all vantage points. One really intriguing work of his, shown below, features colored line paintings hung on walls that are doused in lines of grey and black.

The artist toys with color and boundaries of separation. The colors bleed into one another, drip lines form from gravity, and each layer is pulled into subsequent layers. Despite the rigidity of the lined patterns, there is always this aspect of chaos and an unwillingness to be contained. Boundary breaking, inside of the canvas and outside of it, stretching his vision across whatever parameters may be set architecturally. The dramatized effect of this work becomes atmospheric; how one relates to the space then changes, as the lines and contours of walls are abstracted, nearly dissolved, through the blanket of pattern. The piece is primarily dictated by the space it is shown in, but ultimately the space is taken over by the artwork, creating an interested and entirely unique interaction between the two within each and every installation.

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Fei Through The Ages

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9 score and 1 year ago, our father brought forth, upon this continent, a new nation…oh wait. Wrong address! 1 Year and 9 months ago, Fei started working at Beautiful/Decay, and now today is her last day!

Back then, Fei was like a neon hyper-color baby, favoring bedazzled street-wear thrift store sartorial creations. Now, her clothes incorporate a more muted palette, some classic, feminine pieces like straight leg, form fitting dark pants, as well as some more avante-garde pieces that are on trend, like cucoon shirts, harem pants, or other ready-to-wear pieces that play with volume. OK that’s not really doing her justice either, ’cause its what’s on the inside of Fei that counts!

OK, anyway, Fei has contributed an insane amount of insanely amazing design while she’s here, from the redesign of our blog (a creation she has lovingly mothered and tended to like a small digital vegetable patch), to of course, the layout of the entire magazine, in which she has embedded secret esoteric Free-Masonic based astral symbols that, when held under the light of a full moon and wetted with a drop of a howling wolf, tells the viewer her whereabouts in the world (China.)

Throughout our time together I have delighted in the fact that Fei and I are somehow psychically linked, ostensibly heightened by the fact we eat the same lunch here at the office most every day: Albertsons soup and Trader Joe’s Italian salads. I’m a little sad to see what will become of our kozmic mynd conneksh, but hope that even across continents, our bond remains.

Among my favorite Fei memories:
-Our rollicking rendition of “Rooftop,” (a song we penned together at the old office)
-The day she wore “hoop” earrings
-Hare Krishna buffet
-How she got hit by a car on her first day on the job in the Subway parking lot
-The time Fei made me stand on the old Rooftop (yes, the famous rooftop from the aforementioned ballad) with a feather headdress on and mirrors on my hands, gently making waving motions to refract the sun’s beams for some “art” thing she did
-Singing “Ja, må hon leva” to her
-Having to say “Smultron” to interns in a Swedish accent at her behest
-How she’d sometimes eat a tamal for breakfast
-How she’d sometimes eat leftover cake that was in the freezer for a month for breakfast

….And more! Anyway, Fei, we will all miss you tons!!

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Marc Séguin’s Darkly Humorous Oil Paintings at Mike Weiss Gallery

Touching on themes of the politically backwards, the environmentally compromised and the socially divided, Séguin’s “Illustrated Guide for Aliens” reveals deeper truths about the nature of humanity through images that are not only thought provoking but beautifully elegiac.

 

Brooklyn/Montreal artist Marc Séguin has a show with Mike Weiss Gallery in NYC through October 13th. In case you can’t make it out in person, we’ve got some snaps for you. The show is titled My Century (An Illustrated Guide for Aliens), and features fairly large works (most are 6 x 9 ft.) done in oil and charcoal on raw canvas. The paintings also contain unorthodox materials like taxidermy, locks of hair, and tar. This is Séguin’s second solo exhibition with the gallery, and it seems he’s taken things up a notch since his last show with Mike Weiss in the spring of 2011. The humorous works do a great job of illuminating the major imbalance of wealth and power in contemporary times, and don’t pull any punches. See more from My Century (An Illustrated Guide for Aliens) after the jump.

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Shelby DiMarco

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Shelby DiMarco is a Los Angeles based artist who creates these whimsical collages while working over at Urban Outfitters. I really enjoy her use of composition, I feel it is one of the strongest aspects of her work. (That – and the stories these illustrate.)

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Adam Parker Smith Comic Interventions And Alterations

Whether its an image of a pizza with a phalic sausage sticking out of it or a large mural of ornate pattern made out of plastic flowers and cheap snack food the art work of Adam Parker Smith has a tongue in cheek comic conceptual approach that will make you think, laugh, and say “why didn’t I think of that” all at once. I especially love his tapestries made out of hundreds of friendship bracelets. See these and more after the jump.

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