New York City-based artists’ collective Mosstika cleverly reintroduces the jungle to the urban by covering ordinary steel and concrete surfaces with green, living graffiti made of real live grass and moss. The eco-minded, guerilla street artists primarily operate within New York City, the ultimate urban jungle. The collective is led by artist Edina Tokodi whose own Japanese Zen-inspired installations explore the interconnectedness of nature and the humanmade, inorganic world.
About its creations the collective says: “We believe that if everyone had a garden of their own to cultivate, we would have a much more balanced relation to our territories. It is with this notion in mind, that we at Mosstika, aim to collide the worlds of art and nature, creating havens of unexpected greenery, within the colder harsher environment. Together we aim to give green guerrilla tactics a new twist by creating works meant to be touched, in turn aiming to touch the souls of all that pass by. We strive to call back to mind a more playful existence, returning man to nature, even among the barren patches of urban existence.”
(via Visual News)
Nathan Kaso‘s series Miniature Melbourne takes a tilt shift look at the Australian city. Tilt shift is a photographic technique that essentially “corrects” the distortion created by perspective. The technique has the effect of making an scene resemble a miniature version of itself. Tilt shift photography has been featured on Beautiful/Decay in the past. However, Kaso transformed 10 months worth of his tilt-shift Melbourne photographs into a time-lapse video. Miniature Melbourne captures the work and play, the large life of the city. Watch the video after the jump. [via]
Mixed media artist Travis Bedel, also known as bedelgeuse, seamlessly blends vintage anatomical illustrations with botanical or other biological images to create stunning collages that range anywhere from 5 inches to 6 feet in size. Bedel often uses glue and a razorblade to excise printed vintage illustrations, combining them into beautiful and surreal new iterations. He’ll also scan his images and manipulate them digitally because this technique provides him with more opportunity to play around with sizing, cutting, and pasting the various elements in his collages.
Of his interest in human anatomy, Bedel says, “I find the body beautiful and mysterious. I am amazed and what people can do with their bodies and how if you take care of your own body, the rewards are much greater than imagined. I believe a lot of self-healing takes place mentally and physically when you eat clean and stay active.”
Italian artist Enrico Ferrarini builds upon the famous art history of his country, quite literally, in his unique style which takes traditional sculpture to its digital conclusion. By carving and casting sculptures and then creating multiples of them, Ferrrani combined them, bring a glitched, modernly repetitive styling to time-honored sculpting methods.
The Moderna, Italy-born artist has studied at the Florence Academy of Fine Arts (where some of the most famous sculptures of all time, including Donatello and Michelangelo’s Davids reside), and employs methods of sculpture which are not typically learned by today’s artists. Perhaps that is why his work has a deeper resonance; employing the methods of the past to work with the styling of today. (via myampgoesto11)
Roshan Adhihetty regularly takes off his clothes and photographs other people without theirs on either. Despite what that sounds like, the series he has put together is a tasteful, candid look at a popular past time. Die Nacktwanderer, or The Nude Hikers captures groups of hikers reconnecting with nature and immersing their bodies into their surroundings. Growing up in Lausanne, an area which is quite accustomed to nudity, Adhihetty is no stranger to seeing the human body without clothes on. But after visiting his first nudist beach in Corsica, he decided to take a closer look at the culture of nudity, and in particular, the modern trend of naked hiking. He says:
Nudity and Nature have always been big subjects in art. Inspired by the romantic paintings I was hunting for photographs which feature this tension between romantic nature and disturbing contemporary elements – an opposition between nature and culture. (Source)
His photographs are a brazen look at a subject not often talked about, and sometimes even sneered at. But Adhihetty portrays his subjects with respect and grace, after he had to put himself in their shoes, so to speak. After tracking down a group of willing participants through Craigslist, the photographer had to join them in the buff to be allowed his camera on the hikes. Along with his other observations, Adhihetty realized that many of his subjects were male, and women only make up about a fifth of the hiking population. He notes that this is most likely linked to the social pressures and judgements our current society places on the female figure.
Hopefully with projects like this photographic series, we will stop seeing the naked body as only a sexual thing, but also as a very natural way to exist in the world around us. (Via Feature Shoot)
Rina Dragunova is a Saint Petersburg-based photographer and makeup artist who blends portraiture and still life with vivid and otherworldly imagery. Featured here is a selection of her darker works, all of which explore the ominous crossroads of beauty, death, and transformation. In one series, Dragunova photographed various snakes coiling around animal skulls and sliced pomegranates; the result is a morbid arrangement that weaves together decay and poison with the succulence of fruit flesh. In “Stigmata,” she further unsettles the imagination with the image of flowers planted in a woman’s chest cavity; the seeping blood contrasts grimly with the bleached-white background and sheer lace dress.
In “Conversion,” Dragunova demonstrates an incredible use of makeup art. With onyx-black paint and prosthetic fangs and claws, the model is transformed into a beast in the throes of mutation; charred scales erupt across her face as the possession takes hold. The fiery red eye in the half-turned face haunts the viewer with a look of building terror and inhuman madness. Like the abovementioned series, Dragunova never fails to seize the imagination by seamlessly fusing delicacy and light with savagery and darkness.
See more of Dragunova’s work on 500px, Behance, and VK.com. For Russian-speaking readers, you can watch a video of her snake photoshoot here.
Artist Takumi Kama is trying to confront and conquer his fears of high school girls by turning them into strange reptiles and animals. By anthropomorphizing teenage girls, he makes them less threatening and harmful. The Japanese drawer has imagined one girl as a snobby, gangly giraffe, holding it’s head up high and standing displeased with everything around it. He has drawn another one as a frightened armadillo huddled in the fetal position, looking terrified and uncomfortable. He has sketched the girls he would see on the train as a group of primates, absorbed in their cellphones; the book nerd in the school corridor is now an awkward frog beast holding her book in her weird hands, furry tail wrapped around a bottle of soda pop.
Kama has studied both the poses and mannerisms of the girls and also the beasts he has turned them into – combining them into one and the same. His immaculate pencil renderings create a convincing impression of these strange creatures, and it is easy to see them the way he does every time he encounters the demographic. Kama admits:
I am terrified of high school girls. If I encounter a group of them on a train there is a high possibility I will escape to another car. (Source)
This certain sub culture is often dissected, or referred to in popular Japanese culture. Called Joshi kōsei (女子高生) they feature in manga comics and videos as well as being fetishized in pornographic videos. Kama is also obsessed with the idea of this social group, but in his series Schoolgirl Animals, they are seen as something a bit more imaginative and humorous than the usual schoolgirl fantasy. The collection of his pencil drawings were on show at BAMI gallery in Kyoto until May 31, 2015, but you can still enjoy more of the images after the jump. (Via Spoon Tamago)
Each minute, 6,000 bottles of Jarritos are introduced into shops across the US. Have you ever longed to see your original artwork published as a real-deal print advertisement alongside these shiny little glass bottles of delight? Well here’s your chance! Beautiful/Decay has been selected as a judge for the Jarritos Flavor City Art/Advertising Contest!
How do you win? Just do your thang and make a work of art that includes the Jarritos 2010 logo, slogan (“Drink Out Loud”) and a likeness of a Jarritos flavored soft drink. Then mail to: email@example.com. All mediums welcome. Sorry, no ad agencies. May the best artist win!