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Amazing Photographs Capture The Strange Eyes And Hair Of Insects

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The lens of the Indonesian photographer Donald Jusa has miraculously allowed us to see into the eyes of tiny, wholly bizarre creatures; with his macro camera, the artist is able to capture the most minute details of the insect body. At times, the faces of these beings seem entirely foreign; as viewers, we search for marks of human feeling and features, but the multiple eyes and strange limbs transfix and confound our perceptive powers.

Unlike some macro photography cataloging the lives of insects, Jusa does not capture the  surrounding environment or even the entire body. Instead, his photographs read like strange portraits; against a colored backdrop, the miniature creatures seem absurdly to sit for the artist, proudly displaying their features. Fixed perfectly within the boundaries of the frame, Jusa’s non-human subjects are magically motionless, as if frozen between periods of buzzing and flight. At such close range, the viewer experiences the texture of insect flesh and bone; our eyes scan coarse, moistened hairs.

Jusa’s insects, magnified many times over and seen in such fine detail, tone, and resolution, resemble strange beasts, unrecognizable as the tiny creatures that they most certainly are. As we peer at them and their multiple eyes stare back, we might feel affrighted or startled by their clarity, the very fact of their largeness. It is unnerving to imagine our own faces reflected a thousand times over in these complex, repeating ocular lenses, and yet magically, we can interpret the tiniest hint of recognition within the insect eyes. Take a look. (via Demilked)

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Secret Friends: Photographer AnaHell Manipulates The Body Into Freaky And Cute Inhuman Creatures

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AnaHell is a photographer who portrays the body in ways that change the way we perceive it. Playing with unusual angles and wigs (see the My Little Phony series, for example), normative representations of bodies are broken down, resulting in images that are playful and often unsettling.

Featured here is a series titled Secret Friends, wherein AnaHell manipulates the appearance of bodies to create unique “creatures.” Each photo depicts people bent double with faces drawn on their backs, the subjects’ spines and ribs creating freakish contours. Adorned with hair and clothing and standing in ordinary rooms, they resemble domestic gremlins with a dual ability of charming and disturbing their viewers.

The following project statement explains—in fairly ambiguous terms—AnaHell’s approach and process:

“With a childlike fascination for rawness, flesh, and the absurd, photographer AnaHell plays with the ordinary and deconstructs it to reveal another perspective. She takes advantage of her immediate surroundings, often photographing close friends and family members in their own living spaces. Secret Friends are playmates, reflections, and villains—strange and wonderful creatures from another world, the kind that children create when they’re alone.”

Visit AnaHell’s website and Facebook to view more.

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Mesmerizing Wall Patterns Cast By Intricate Shadows

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Mixed media artist Anila Quayyum Agha has figured out how to decorate an entire room with shadows cast from a box. Laser cutting intricate patterns into a wooden cube, a light within the cube projects an intricate display of shadows that envelope the entire room in ornate design. The results are breathtaking and the philosophy behind her work is fascinating.

This project, titled “Intersections,” combines the patterning of Islamic sacred spaces with architectural aesthetics:

“The Intersections project takes the seminal experience of exclusion as a woman from a space of community and creativity such as a Mosque and translates the complex expressions of both wonder and exclusion that have been my experience while growing up in Pakistan. The wooden frieze emulates a pattern from the Alhambra, which was poised at the intersection of history, culture and art and was a place where Islamic and Western discourses, met and co-existed in harmony and served as a testament to the symbiosis of difference. For me the familiarity of the space visited at the Alhambra Palace and the memories of another time and place from my past, coalesced in creating this project. My intent with this installation was to give substance to mutualism, exploring the binaries of public and private, light and shadow, and static and dynamic. This installation project relies on the purity and inner symmetry of geometric design, the interpretation of the cast shadows and the viewer’s presence within a public space.”

(Excerpt from Source)

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Documentary Watch: One Man’s Life

This film is an intimate portrait of Mark Brookmire. He has lived a solitary life for the last 20 years in a cabin in the woods of Western New York.  After Mark was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer and given three months to live, his daughter immediately sought to capture the spirit of her father as a poet, falconer and free-spirit in this deeply personal documentary. Watch the full documentary after the jump.

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Faig Ahmed Reimagines Traditional Azerbaijani Carpets

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With a serious understanding of classic carpet-making techniques, Azerbaijani sculptor Faig Ahmed is able to stretch, distort and reinvent an iconic symbol steeped in tradition and cultural significance. “The carpet is a symbol of invincible tradition of the East, it’s a visualization of an undestroyable icon,” Ahmed states, noting that the manipulation of the woven medium gives visual form to ideas he has relating to “destroying the stereotypes of tradition to create new modern boundaries.” The rug, as a medium, works well for Ahmed, helping to deploy a deeper message about the stretching, bending and restructuring of physical and political boundaries in the Middle East. His technical mastery is evident in the movements of each thread, and his generous use of color gives the work an overall vibrancy—perhaps hinting at the artist’s sense of optimism in a time of great uncertainty and turmoil.

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Cocaine Cowboys & Cocaine Cowboys 2

This is a two part documentary post. If you intrigued by lady gangsters, drugs, and Miami Vice these are the documentaries for you…

The cocaine trade of the 70s and 80s had an indelible impact on contemporary Miami. Smugglers and distributors forever changed a once sleepy retirement community into one of the world’s most glamorous hot spots, the epicenter of a $20 billion annual business fed by Colombia’s Medellin cartel. By the early 80s, Miami’s tripled homicide rate had made it the murder capital of the country, for which a Time cover story dubbed the city “Paradise Lost.” With COCAINE COWBOYS, filmmaker Billy Corben – whose first feature Raw Deal: A Question Of Consent, caused a sensation at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival – paints a dazzling portrait of a cultural explosion that still echoes as Hollywood myth, evidenced by the latest manifestation, NBC/Universal’s Miami Vice, opening July 28th. Composer of the original “Miami Vice” theme, Jan Hammer, provides the score.

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Michelle Wasson

Love the brushwork in these semi-abstract still life paintings by Michelle Wasson. The mark making feels perfectly effortless but extremely precise.

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Lee Hadwin Creates Art While Sleepwalking

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Some artists are so talented they seem to be able to do it in their sleep.  Lee Hadwin, though, can only do it in his sleep.  Since he was an early teenager, Hadwin would draw or paint on tables, walls, clothes all while sleep walking.  While awake he would show no sign of interest or talent in art making.  Now Hadwin is prepared at night – he sets art materials aside before going to bed.  Much of his work is elegantly simple, while other pieces are strangely intricate.  Peculiar symbols and recurring shapes seem to appear in much of his work making one wonder whats going on in the mind of sleeping Lee Hadwin.

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