Neon lights are no longer bound to the buzzing drone of roadside restaurant signs as they have been freed by artist Yudi Noor. Yes that’s right, his mixed media works light themselves! Seriously though, check out his cool experimentation with neon tubes.
Ceramic artist Paul Cummins and stage designer Tom Piper collaborate to create a stunning installation commemorating the centennial of the First World War. A scarlet sea of 888,246 ceramic red poppies will be “planted” around the Tower of London. Titled “Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red”, the installation pays tribute to soldiers who perished during the war.
For the past few weeks, volunteers have been carefully placing the flowers all around the famous dry moat around the Tower. Poppies burst through one of the windows and then flow loosely, forming an arch over the footbridge to the castle. Each poppy represents a soldier from the United Kingdom and its colonies who was killed during WWI. Cummings says he was inspired by a line in the will of a soldier from Derbyshire.
“I don’t know his name or where he was buried or anything about him. But this line he wrote, when everyone he knew was dead and everywhere around him was covered in blood, jumped out at me: ‘The blood-swept lands and seas of red, where angels fear to tread.’ I believe he meant the angels to refer to his children.”
Poppy is considered a flower of remembrance in Britain. The reason is because most of the soldiers died fighting in the trenches in the poppy fields of Flanders.
The blooming field will continue to grow throughout the summer. The final flower will be symbolically planted on November 11th, Armistice Day. The ceramic blossoms are for sale for £25 ($42) each. 10 percent of the proceeds go to benefit six different charities. You can find out more about the project by following the #TowerPoppies hashtag on Twitter. (via Colossal)
In the newly-published book titled Hollywood Frame by Frame, author Karina Longworth examines the contact sheet, a necessity in film making before the advent of digital technology. The prints were used by photographer as a way to review and edit their work, and the sheets contain small thumbnails of multiple shots. They were marked, scribbled on, carefully examined to find the perfect shot later used in advertising.
These sheets are alluring; not for how interesting and different each individual frame is, but it’s a tiny glimpse into what went on behind the scenes in famous films. You’re able to see what was and wasn’t chosen, as well as the outtakes. A description for Hollywood Frame by Frame describes it as, “…it’s often the photos not chosen that best capture the true spirit of their subjects and the life they lead after the director yells cut. This was never truer than in the classic Hollywood era, where behind-the-scenes photos were carefully vetted for marketing purposes and unapproved shots were never expected to be seen again.”
Some of the films included in the book are: Some Like It Hot, Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Taxi Driver, and Silence of the Lambs. It was published by Princeton Architectural Press.
Jesse Edwards isa painter from Seattle who’s been living in NYC for nearly two years. I moved to NYC around the same time as he did and he was one of the first artists I met here. Jesse is really funny because he does these really technically amazing paintings with a Monet sensibility but then he acts all ruggish-thuggish. His subject matter is often “real shit” and its even funnier to see him talk about painting. Talking to Jesse about painting is awesome because he instantly kills all pretension. Its really fun to hang around someone who doesn’t give a shit, yet has more cred than someone who gives too much of a shit. Check out some of his paintings and maybe this will start to make more sense..
Now that the Angry Birds craze has died down a bit artist Rachel Lord has decided to immortalize our fine feathered friends even more. In a lighthearted way, Lord renders a true cartoon likeness of each bird set against a photorealistic background. At times the rural settings look a cross between paint by numbers and millennium pop art. If you haven’t noticed, The Angry Birds have become just as much part of mainstream pop culture as the Simpsons or Disneyworld.
Two billion downloads strong, the Finnish Company Rovio first introduced the series in 2009. Those familiar will remember the birds objective was to fight mean snorkeling baddie pigs in various outdoor settings. It required little video game skill and could be downloaded for free in a number of apps. The play consisted of flinging an individual bird into structures with an objective to destroy enemy forts. Despite its violence and simplicity there was an addictive quality to the gameplay which turned the birds into martyrs since each one perished after playing. To date it is the most downloaded free game of all time.
Lord’s paintings reminisce each character in a blissful state, giving peaceful existence to the multi-variety of birds. It’s interesting to note Lord painted the birds in subdued situations instead of flinging them across the canvas watching them destroy. The birds are all ultra cute and have different abilities but mostly are cute and whose bright feathers make for nice contrast in Lord’s paintings set against the subtle natural colors of oceans, mountains and trees. Besides their own games, the brand has released Star Wars, Transformers and NBA versions. There is an Angry Bird theme park and Angry Bird soda.
Typographer and illustrator Alex Varanese combines 3d techniques with traditional print design techniques in circuit bent type series of illustrations. I like the consistent and specific use of red in all of Alex’s work. Im not sure what you would call the shade but it’s an iconic palate that’s modern and vintage at the same time. Alex also has a nice array of custom type on his site. More images after the jump.
Tate Ellington, known primarily as an actor, is also a self-taught painter, with an exhibition history that expands from NYC to Los Angeles. Working from doodles, conjured from found magazines, photographs, medical reference books, and/or an automatic sense of line, using mostly oils as his medium, Ellington inevitably focuses in on facial nuances, stating, “It’s what I identify with the most, so naturally, they come more.”
Each portrait carries a sharp bend of drama, as though the artist is implicated or interrupting more so than puppeteering the performance. Likewise, this is what strong acting does. In this way, Ellington seems to connect his two artistic loves, asserting, “In acting you are supposed to look for the truth of a character or of a situation. You can also be called to exaggerate the truth, if necessary. I think this is what I try to do with my paintings. I try to find the person by exaggerating him or her.” Each stroke is not just about the surface, but a discovery, or search for our own sense of play or performance as human beings.
Beautiful/Decay has teamed up with MSTRKRFT & SPRFKR to present a creative giveaway. All you have to do is send us your COOLEST drawing of two dudes sporting mustaches and shades! You can draw MSTRKRFT if you want- or any other two guys sporting this incognito look. Three lucky winners will receive a MSTRKRFT prize package of a SPRFKR poster & MSTRKRFT’s latest cd, “Fist of God.” Winning submissions will also be featured on the Beautiful/Decay blog! So get creative- submissions can be digital, painted, crocheted, Bento boxes, whatever!