Stacy Kranitz focuses on the multidimensional character of Leni Riefenstahl, whose focused vision and murky set of morals greatly inspired Kranitz. These grey areas spoke to her desire to understand people beyond the constraints of good vs. evil.
During Pennsylvania’s yearly reenactments of the Battle of the Bulge, Kranitz portrays Leni Riefenstahl and behaves with soldiers as she would. Kranitz examines how the photograph documents and shapes history, since much of our conception of history is based on images. The 500 reenactors base the authenticity of their looks on images and, in particular, on Riefenstahl’s film Triumph of the Will. Kranitz focuses on how these historical images have been filtered through both the media and propaganda, becoming history as generations pass and memories fade. Photographs and film become the dominant forces that shape the public imagination.
If you can’t get to a beach this summer, then you will be thankful for design duo Snarkitecture‘s new installation at the National Building Museum in Washington DC. The space is filled with 1 million translucent polystyrene balls in a massive wading pool, the floor is carpeted and scattered with deck chairs and beach umbrellas, inviting the beach goers to enjoy a day reading, wading, or playing paddle ball. There is even a summery snack bar available selling popcorn, candy, chocolate bars and soda pop. Every Wednesday the Museum offers different events where the snack bar will also offer bar service.
The Beach is a part of the program the Museum likes to offer each year – they dedicate the 10,000 square foot space to a gimmicky exhibition that will draw the crowds. And this year the honor went to Snarkitecture to produce something that would entertain the masses. Established by Alex Mustonen and Daniel Arsham, Snarkitecture is a design studio that focuses on minimal and intelligent design solutions, not only for spaces, but for objects as well. Drawing their name from Lewis Carroll’s The Hunting of The Snark, the team like a challenge and enjoy re-imagining existing objects and architecture. The poem describes an “impossible voyage of an improbable crew to find an inconceivable creature”, and Mustonen and Arsham take on this idea quite literally. They state their mission as:
Snarkitecture’s approach focuses on the viewer’s experience and memory, creating moments of wonder and interaction that allow people to engage directly with their surrounding environment. By transforming the familiar into the extraordinary, Snarkitecture makes architecture perform the unexpected. (Source)
The duo have been responsible for some very clever installations in many different spaces. You can check out their back catalog here. Or take your bathing suit and towel and head to their artificial paradise. The Beach is open until September 7. (Via Washingtonian)
Spanish artist José Manuel Castro López seems to have the ability to transform the structural properties of rocks. He manipulates the surface of stone to create a new formation. He turns a classic object of solid nature into something strange, malleable and soft. His work, for just a moment, forces the viewer to question reality. For what should be “as hard as a rock” becomes reminiscent of having a materiality as flexible as dough. With loose folds, simple cut outs and pinches, it seems the artist is able to sculpt rocks as if they are as supple as clay. Each piece has a certain sense of humor to it, as it is an optical illusion that kind of asks the viewer to reflect upon his or her own common sense. Yet, simultaneous to its comical, light hearted absurdity, the work also has an almost unusual, uncomfortable resemblance to flesh, giving the work a darker, more complex facet. With these flesh like objects — quite literally for some of them, as they depict faces — the properties of what seems like skin begin to become distorted, perhaps depicting the moments directly after pain has been inflicted. For example, his sculpture of what looks like a ring puncturing skin. Or, the sculpture of what looks like the result of flesh that has been stretched through it’s ability to be elastic. With a large array of pieces, José Manuel Castro López creates clever work that truly plays tricks on your eyes. (via deMilked)
Specializing in state-of-the-art projects and renowned for their sleek aesthetic, digital artists Ewelina Aleksandrowicz, known as Tikul, and Andrzej Wojtas, or mi$ Gogo, collectively comprise Pussykrew, a partnership focused on inventive new media projects.
Experimental in nature and out-of-this-world in design, the work that makes up Pussykrew’s exciting oeuvre evokes a futuristic sensibility. Through video installations, methods of 3D-printing, performance art, and electronic works, the duo seeks to construct “gender-bending visual journeys, filtered through carnal data mesh, liquid apocalyptic dysphoria and 3D fantasy shuffle.”
While the methods used and the materials explored by the twosome vary, perhaps their most celebrated projects are their 3D-printed pieces, for which they were christened the “Artist of the Year” at London’s 3D Print Show earlier this year. Spanning lustrous blobs of ambiguous, organic shapes slathered in car paint and androgynous busts with seemingly liquefied skin, Pussykrew’s 3D-printed pieces capture both the duo’s innovative process and their inclination toward a streamlined aesthetic. Noting that “the boundaries between the virtual and the physical has been obliterated, [and] carnal matter exists with a technological component as a hybrid,” the pair gravitates toward this method of sculpture, combining their experience in the digital realm with their inherent artistic abilities.
Coulie, Border Collie/ Golden Retriever cross, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada
Taken by Coulie
San Diego-based photographer Chris Keeney might have orchestrated the series PetCam, but it’s not his artistic eye that captured the shots. No, instead he handed the job over to an unlikely set of collaborators: animals, including his dog Fred and cat Alice. Chickens, pigs, cows, and guinea pigs living all around the world partake in the fun with a lightweight camera that’s tailored to their size. Keeny set the shutter to click at specified intervals of time that range from a fraction of a second to many seconds.
The photographer stresses that these cameras don’t impede the movement or happiness of the subjects, and they’re given free reign to go about their day: exploring sights and sounds, relaxing under a car, and scaling rooftops. For us, the results present a view that we don’t often see – one that’s from the vantage point of an animal. Some of the photos are distorted, others confusing, but all are intriguing; they provide us a look into what catches these creatures’ eyes as the move throughout the world.
Porn stars are faced with a conundrum. If they act well, can the audience believe that they’re enjoying the sex? That acting may be beside the point entirely is made clear by the found photographs in Issue #008 of Useful Photography magazine, published by KesselsKramer. Each image is taken from the introductory, non-intimate scenes from adult movies and magazines.
Pornographic films, websites and magazines all plough the same furrow – the repetition of the same act, in all its variations. Where they differ is their opening sequences, the patently fake and false scenarios, which are an afterthought to the main event. … Useful Photography celebrates these opening scenes, often cliche, sometimes bizarrely inventive, but always supremely fake.
These stills act like creative prompts: what’s happening and what’s going to happen next? Where did those weeping women find those netted hats? Why so many pigtails? Is that a dead man on that table and blood on the nurse’s apron? And, perhaps more to the point, is any of this a turn on?
Recontextualising found photographs and curating them into books and exhibitions is Kessels’ speciality. Useful Photography #008 is the eighth title in the popular series; previous subjects include missing persons’ photographs, amateur trophy winners and professional trade images of cows. (Source)
Frozen in time these images are a compilation of heavy make-up and leers, short skirts and creative facial hair. Clearly dated, it’s difficult to find their try hard sexiness titillating. It could be argued that one doesn’t watch porn for the acting… or the scenery, the wardrobe, the script, or the music. These ridiculous introductory scenes provide atmosphere, serving laughter as foreplay. (via Feature Shoot)