Holland based Eric van Straaten is one of the most technical and talented 3-D sculptors in the world. According to trendwatchers, 3D-printing is the next big thing: in the near future, every household will own a printer that is capable of printing digital three-dimensional objects into a physical object. In the process that is best known under the name ‘Additive Manufacturing’, a 3D-printer builds up a model layer by layer by selectively hardening liquid or powder.
If this powder is a plaster-like material, a model can be directly printed in full color. The 3D-printing of delicate and colored models is far from being just pushing a button, but requires great technical skills. Therefore only a few specialize in this technique and there is no artist who pushes the boundaries of colorized 3D-prints as far as Eric van Straaten.
There is no technique that is capable of achieving such a great degree of hyper(sur)realism as 3D-modeling. At the same time, 3D printing is the only technique with which virtual models can be made actually physically touchable. Physical expressiveness in form and content is the biggest strength of the work of Eric van Straaten: while the sculptures remain to have a certain digital feel to them, the pieces contain a weirdly eroticized corporeality. Balancing on the edge of kitsch, the marzipan-like quality of the material resonates beautifully with the apparent innocence of the scenery. –Prof. Dr. Arnold Ratsberger
Anne Simone combines her knowledge of computer programming with a love of music. Bittersweet is her new lp which features a twist. The lyrics of lead track “Digitize Me” make up a running computer program and the words you hear are directly taken from written code. The idea came to Simone when she thought about a computer reading language. In that environment, a simple machine responds to basic commands of yes/no, true/false and 1s and 0s.
The artist compared it to human nature and concluded that life would be so much simpler, if we just followed these Zen-like rules. If we did, there would be less complication and miscommunication in our lives. Getting a further glimpse of what actually occurs when two different disciplines collide, it can be witnessed on the actual computer printout of “Digitize me”. Nothing too complicated or elaborate in the aesthetic sense, it reveals just a simple drawing. The real innovation is in concept and design. A place marker for today’s interdisciplinary melding of styles and tastes. Originally from Vancouver, Canada, Simone currently resides in Seattle, Washington, where she works as a software designer. Her passion has led to a double life that now overlaps and is reflected in well written, emotionally charged songs. These are further enhanced by an equally lovely voice, reminiscent of Imogen Heap or Tegan and Sara. Besides uplifting music, other novel bits on her new record take cues from classic synthsters Kraftwerk. The German outfit had a single called “Pocket Calculator” where the sound of fingers pressing a keypad accounted for the actual beat. Another, “Computer Love” taken from the same album, falls in line with Simone’s dreamier tracks. For the technically minded or just curious, the code/lyrics to “Digitize Me” is available on GitHub (https://github.com/kineticsongs/digitizeMe).
Vellas & Laga are a dangerous duo of animation and art direction that make motion work for many clients. There work is has a friendly appeal, with crisp, clean, and colorful details abounding. They seem to have a flair for understanding what works commercially for a client, while applying their own sensitivities to make it pop.
It’s no secret that Melbourne-based artist Phil Ferguson is fond of food. After all, giant slices of crocheted pizza, cracked eggs, bacon, hot dogs, and much more are strapped onto the top or side of his head. They take the form of decorative hats and costumes that frame the wearer’s face, and their larger-than-life scale makes them a delight. Ferguson posts as @chiliphilly on Instagram where he has 14.2K fans (at the time of writing).
The artist is originally from Perth in Western Australia, and he started crocheting the food and sharing on Instagram as a way to connect with other artists in the area. It all began with a burger that was inspired by Tuck Shop Take Away, his place of work. “From that point onward I thought about how to do food hats,” he told Daily Mail. “[Food] has been the most accessible thing people can relate to and it will stay that way until I’m bored.”
Depending on the design, Ferguson is able to complete a piece in two to three days. The artist describes himself as a self-taught crocheter (he watched instructional YouTube videos) who has never learnt to read patterns. Even so, he’s crafted 24 delectable creations so far. (Via Daily Mail and Milk Made)
Young Icelandic designer, Hrefna Sigurðardóttir has a graphic sensibility that is bold and bright. Originally spotted via The Fox is Black, her portfolio is an eclectic mix of illustrative typography and design to art direction and styling, including several collaborations with photographer Magnus Anderson.
In deconstructing Barbie dolls and repurposing them as jewelry for “Plastic Bodies Series,” the designer Margaux Lange forces us to enter an uncomfortable space between disgust and worship of the iconic toy. Barbie, who has been a target of the last decades’ feminist debate, occupies an ambiguous role in the social and sexual development of girls; she exudes sexuality with her adult figure, but she also remains virginal, never revealing her nipples or genitalia.
Lange’s work powerfully evokes the girlhood tension between reverence and anger felt towards the doll and its conflicting representation of female eroticism. At its most practical, the art is a function of style; elevated to the status of precious jewels, Barbie’s eyes and breasts inspire nostalgia and desire. Yet the doll is so clearly dismembered, and therefore violently objectified, and her selfhood becomes reduced to a series of nearly identical body parts, arranged for your consumption.
Arguably, the most compelling of the works include Barbie’s male companion doll Ken. Although the dolls often serve as play actors for a child’s early exploration of sexual desire and experience, their plastic forms obscure and confuse concepts of intimacy. In isolating the dolls’ features, Lange is able to express more clearly-seen longings within the previously sterile dolls; they become fixated between metal filigrees, robbed of their eyes but permanently in contact with one another. In use, the relationship between the owner and the doll also reaches new levels of fetishistic fascination. In one pair of earrings, doll hands reach out to touch the curve of the human neck; a necklace allows a tiny pair of metal lungs, filled with the breath of Barbie and Ken, to lay atop the wearer’s own chest. Take a look. (via Margaux Lange and BUST)