Patty Carroll photographs women who hide behind fabric. In her series, Anonymous Women: Draped, she features figures sitting and standing, all shrouded in luscious fabrics, rugs, and more. These women are invisible, meant to convey the idea that as we perfect the space of our home, it can fuse with our identity. Carroll’s choice in fabrics harkens another era, and look like they could be in the house of a grandparent. The Nuclear family of the 1950′s and 1960′s comes to mind in her work, when women’s roles were often domestically confined. Carroll writes about the series and the inspiration and implications behind it, stating:
I am addressing the double edge of domesticity; the home as a place of comfort, or conversely, a place where decoration camouflages one’s individuality to the point of claustrophobia. The draperies in these photographs act as both a visual cue as well as a literal interpretation of over-identification/obsession! While my direct sources for this series come from furnishing a home, as well as remembering the nuns in their habits while growing up, this series also references draped statues from the Renaissance, women wearing the burka, the Virgin Mary, ancient Greek and Roman dress, priests’ and judges’ robes, among others. I believe everyone has a hidden identity formed by personal traditions, memories, and ideas that are cloaked from the outer world. Cultivating these inner psychological, emotional and intellectual worlds is perhaps our greatest challenge as people, wherever we come from or wherever we live. (Via I need a guide)
What happens when molten aluminium is poured into an anthill, allowed to dry, then excavated and cleaned off? Anthill Art – an anonymous American artist – creates intricate metallic sculptures by doing just that. These forms reveal the depth and styles of various ant species’ hills, mainly from the beds of pesky fire ants. The complex and beautiful systems of these ant beds are revealed through this process, but has created a bit of controversy. People concerned with this method of sculpture work have commented on Anthill Art’s Facebook page, where the artist has responded generally to these concerns.
“I regret every day calling it anthillart. To be honest it was a short memorable name and I went with it. I’m not really a fan of art and would never refer to myself as an artist, I guess I considered the ants to be the artists (and architects). If someone created these themselves and called it art I would call it modern art crap. That the ants created it makes me love it.
I first started doing this just out of pure interest (always having been interested in biology and science). A few of my teacher friends took them to school and camp, the kids loved it and it really seemed to get them interested in science. So, I decided to start the site and try to sell a few.
The fire ant colonies are not abandoned. The justification being that there are so many of them and I need to kill them anyway, with kids and pets around. Plus they’re an invasive species in this area and wreak havoc. Some states have eradication programs. The other ants (usually carpenter ants), I try to find abandoned nests but it doesn’t always work out. Either way, I do it sparingly and the property is still over run with them.”
Happy New Year to all our readers! To make sure we all start the new year full of inspiration and creativity we are extending our holiday 50% off sale until January 10th! Get 50% off all books, magazines, and artist shirts and get inspired by the thousands of artists and designers that we feature in our pages.
Childrens’ Pop Culture icons and S&M…who wouldn’t want to see that twisted combination come to life?
Playing with this juicy idea, Richard Ankrom juxtaposes the familiar and the innocent with the unlikely and devilish by creating the figurines you see here. From a masked Tinkerbell and Cinderella, to a naughty bust of Gone in the Wind’s leads, Ankrom captures conflicting, yet hysterical imagery by combining iconic visuals of our childhood idols and S&M gadgetry.
These sculptures were exhibited at the Aqua Art Miami this year, and while we missed it on our trip to Miami, we gathered a couple of sentences from the artist’s statement on this work:
‘The contempt for effusive sentimental goods, that pander to nostalgic consumers led me to take these objects and disable them. In this process mass produced figurines become individual and surreal. These ideas are in conjunction with Duchamp’s ready-mades, Rauschenberg’s erased de Kooning, Paul McCarthy and Jeff Koons.’
Ankrom also explains that the ‘objects are selected by their character, cleaned, masked, dipped or poured several times with synthetic rubber. Zippers are tucked in with dental tools and sealed with rubber, and some zippers are painted gold.’
Oh Seung Yul’s noodles may look delicious and edible, but in reality they are complex, hyper-realistic resin sculptures. The Korean noodles dangle 12-feet tall with an actual chopstick fixed to the top. Everything is articulated, from the individual noodles to the carrots and clams. Yul has considered even the gesture of slurping this food. He has colored the noodle mass in such a way that you feel a rush of broth dripping from the chopsticks.
You can marvel at the sculptures for their craft as well as attach a narrative to them. Who is tall enough to hold that chopstick? What kind of person owns that decorative floral platter? The work exaggerated size lends itself well to a whimsical interpretation. It’s still without feeling stiff and impeccably realistic. Yul’s work tricks the viewer, but ultimately reward them with something that’s extremely considered and tediously constructed. (Via My Modern Met)
Alicia Martín (formerly featured here - as well as in our Best of 2012) has kept busy this year, expanding on her signature style of cascading book installations that we first saw in Biografías. Each installation begins as a wire and aluminum structure, to which hundreds and thousands of books are attached, creating the illusion of waterfalls of pages and spines wrapping around objects, wrapping around themselves, and pouring from windows and underneath walls.
In works such as Singularidad, the Madrid, Spain-based artist focuses her waves of books into a more circular shape, resembling a vortex rather than a waterfall. Playing with the idea of a black-hole, or naked singularity, the collective swathe of books consumes itself, rather than bursting forward. In Contemporaneos, Martín plays with the idea of the books being the background, the support, or what’s behind the object, pouring out of (or cracking through) a wall – engaging in a dialogue with more indoor, site-specific contemporary installation. However, Martín continues to re-imagine her waterfalls, with newer pieces expanding on previous work’s pouring from buildings, as well as running down streets, through windows and around trees, with pages blowing in the wind at each amazing installation. (via mymodernmet)
As 2013 draws to a close, it becomes easier to see the trends in art, design and visual storytelling that attracted especially popular interest over the year. Among them were the use of superheroes, which only decades ago were confined to a mythology only ‘nerds’ spoke of. But with superheroes becoming ever-more popular and Geek culture no longer a source of shame, comic book and science fiction heroes have become instantly recognizable forms of pop symbolism for many. Beautiful/Decay featured the work of Andreas Englund’s aging superhero paintings, Alex Lukas’ referential superhero screenprints and Antonio Strafella’s comic heroes as saints, all who took these mythologies and blended them with updated styles, forms, perspectives and techniques.
Josh Lane (Ln) took the same cues with his perfectly titled Hero-Glyphics series, combining a variety of classic comic book (the X-men, Spiderman, the Avengers) and sci-fi (Star Trek) heroes, and re-imagining them in the style of Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. Ln expands on the classic heroes as well, also casting 90′s nostalgia (in the form of the Power Rangers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) as well as newer comic and movie characters (Kick-Ass).
The holiday season is all about giving. Giving presents to friends and family, giving back to your local community, and giving to worthwhile organizations that you believe in and who are making a real difference to make the world a safer, happier, and healthier place. The American Cancer Society is the perfect example of such an organization. For 100 years, the American Cancer Society (ACS) has worked relentlessly to save lives and create a world with less cancer and more birthdays. Together with millions of supporters worldwide, they help people stay well, help people get well, find cures, and fight back against cancer. Sixty years ago, 1 out of 3 people diagnosed with cancer survived. Today, thanks in part to the work of the American Cancer Society, 2 out of 3 will survive. The ACS has funded groundbreaking research in nearly every major cancer research breakthrough in recent history, provides a variety of support services for cancer patients, and promotes cancer prevention far and wide.
One of the most important tasks that The American Cancer Society takes on is providing lodging for patients and caregivers. Last year alone they provided lodging for over 50,000 people.
Having a place to live shouldn’t be the difference between life and death for anyone. Let’s continue to make sure that everyone who needs a room gets one! Join the American Cancer Society and make noise to finish the fight against cancer once and for all.
This post is sponsored by the American Cancer Society.