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Malika Gaudin-Delrieu’s Touching Photographs Of “A Happy Hermaphrodite Prostitute”

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“Hermaphrodite [sex … is] the sex of the angels,” explains Claudette, an intersex sex worker, to the photographer Malika Gaudin-Delrieu. The pair began their collaboration after meeting in Claudette’s native Switzerland, where Gaudin-Delrieu was documenting the country’s legalized prostitution. With her recent series of photographs, the artist elegantly dispels stigma around complex gender identities; as seen through her lens, Claudette is a woman, a husband, and a father.

Ideas on prostitution, a field often associated with the abuse and exploitation of women, is also complicated by the work. Here, sex work is seen as a means of self-actualization and joy; “Claudette is the opposite of a victim. She controls her life, makes her choices clearly and knowingly. She does more than just live her life, she loves it,” says Gaudin-Deirieu of her subject. A courageous activist for sex workers’ rights, our protagonist stands before a dark auditorium, bathed in spotlight, silently inhaling, poised to speak.

Laced throughout the work are subtle moments of love and intimacy. The series, romantically titled La vie en rose (presumably after the love song by Edith Piaf, a prolific French singer who was cared for by sex workers), focuses in part on Claudette’s 52 year marriage to her wife Andrée. Claudette’s quiet warmth and affections, seen in her and Andrée’s sleepy embrace, permeates throughout the entire visual narrative; with the same profound care, she counts her earnings, dresses in lingerie, rubs her neck.

Claudette describes her work as “[assuming the role of] ultimate femininity […] with happiness and a sense of relief,” and her nuanced relationship with her sensual yearning shines through in the images. We follow her as stops in the street, seduced by a lingerie shop window, as she dresses herself, fingering the textured fabrics as they cling to her body. Claudette’s life, as seen through streaming sunlight and soft darkness, is magnetic, alluring, and unexpectedly soothing, and viewers are left to ponder an indescribably complex global sexual and political landscape. What do you think? (via Feature Shoot and HuffPost)

Writer’s note: Gaudin-Deirieu’s work and this post are in no way meant to be taken as a generalization of the lives of sex workers; instead, they are meant to highlight the life an individual. As the artist explains, there are as many views on prostitution as there are people practicing it. For many, it’s a form of abuse; for Claudette, it is not.

The word “hermaphrodite” is usually considered to be offensive, and in no way is this post meant to condone or encourage the use of the word under most circumstances. Here, it is used only because Claudette herself identifies with the word. 

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MARGIE LIVINGSTON Drips, Drops, Strips, And Skins

Margie Livingston’s work articulates the interaction between the architectural grid and the natural, organic world. Based on three–dimensional models that she builds in the studio, her paintings directly translate the phenomena of space, light, color and gravity upon these hybrid structures into lines and bands of color that hang seemingly suspended in space. Now, letting accident and discovery meet invention and experimentation, Livingston reverses her usual process, using paint to construct objects. Her new paint objects—built entirely from dots, strips, and skins of dried acrylic pigment investigate the properties of paint pushed into three dimensions and offer a compelling view into how the medium of paint can be used sculpturally. The sculpture featured above contains 62 layers of poured color going from dark to light.

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Tim Flach’s incredible Photographs of Dogs

Everyone love a cute photo of a dog but London based Tim Flach’s dog photographs show mans best friend in a completely new light. Bringing the viewer into close-up proximity with their animal subjects, painstakingly lit, carefully cropped for maximum graphic impact and animated by telling gestures, these photographs place us in an intimate relationship with their protagonists. They are far removed from wildlife photography’s documentary images of animals observed in their natural habitat. In fact, the treatment accorded to these particular creatures is not dissimilar from close encounters with individuals that are the stuff of human portraiture.

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Cris Bruch at Elizabeth Leach Gallery

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Cris Bruch’s work might be found on a more tasteful version of planet Pandora. His shapes have this mysterious, organic quality that I imagine existing on an alien planet populated by giant blue people who are really into saving the environment and stuff. His exhibition at Elizabeth Leach Gallery, Gather and Wait, from July 1st – August 28th explores the artist’s creative process through a series of drawings, photographs of works in progress, and completed sculptures.

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Megan Bogonovich’s Ceramic Sculptures Of Oversized Coral Reefs Are Detailed Fairytales

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In New Hampshire-based artist Megan Bogonovich’s magical ceramic sculptures, well-dressed women and men peek into gigantic anemones and castle-like coral reefs, plunging headfirst inside like Alice in Wonderland. Looking at the sculptures is similar to reading an enchanting fairytale, with each ornate detail given the attention and intricacy usually afforded to the illustrations in a children’s storybook. Bogonovich’s eye for detail is perhaps most evident in the underwater creatures poised to swallow their small-scale human counterparts. Made colossal in comparison, they foster the sense of wonder and impending adventure that Bogonovich is so adept at creating for each of her sculptures. There’s no end to the number of details one can glean looking at just one of Bogonovich’s sculptures, from the little girl peering into the rose-like openings in a slab of coral to the woman on the cusp of falling headlong into a multicolored anemone that, with its open valves, strongly resembles a human heart. Bogonovich’s sculptures are painted in vivid pastel colors of yellows, pinks, and greens, which lends them an even stronger storybook aesthetic. This serves them well in conjuring up all of the magical scenarios to follow the spellbinding scenes her sculptures capture. (via Hi Fructose)

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Felipe Pantone’s Hi-Gloss Works Blur The Line Between Graffiti, Design And Hallucinogenic Patterns

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Complete with slick, bold colors and lens flares, artist Felipe Pantone livens up walls and urban environments with his murals. The neon-colored creations are text based and often coupled with geometric and monochromatic patterns. Their energy can’t and won’t be ignored, and it conjures up an aesthetic that’s contemporary, yet feels like it’s out of the late 1990’s thanks to a rainbow combination of gradients that fill the letterforms.

Pantone’s graffit straddles the line between traditional graffiti, typography, and design. It’s this mixture of popular cultures that gives a unique voice, and simultaneously looks familiar but is something all its own.  For someone who might only be familiar with one aspect of Pantone’s multifaceted inspiration, they can find something interesting and meaningful within it (aside it just being fun to look at). (Via The Fox is Black)

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Documentary Watch: The Sound Of Transformers

 

I know you’re thinking “Why is Amir doing a post about a mainstream movie like Transformers?” I know I’d be doing the same thing If I logged onto the B/D site and saw this post. Bust stay with me folks because this is actually a very interesting short documentary about how sound designers came up with all the various sounds for the new Transformers: Dark Of The Moon movie. I personally find it inspiring and interesting to see what great lengths these sound magicians go to to find new and unique sounds for our movie watching pleasure. From shooting guns in the desert to recording the sounds of Airforce rockets going off at miles away these guys go to great lengths to create real and intimate experiences for our listening pleasures. Watch the full documentary after the jump!

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Sebastian Schramm’s Playful Portraits

The portraits of German photographer and art director Sebastian Schramm are proof that you don’t need a complicated process to create striking images. Using the everyday debris of life and dead-on placement Schramm transforms one of the oldest tropes in art into something new, unexpected, and beautiful. More of Schramm’s portraits after the jump.

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