FASTWÜRMS is a Canadian artist collective started in 1979 by Kim Kozzi and Dai Skuse, who are associate professors of studio art at the University of Guelph in Ontario. Their artwork seemingly encompass all disciplines – installation, video, manifesto, performance, drawing, etc – and concerns witch positivity, working class aesthetics, queer politics, and public collaborations. Many of the images after the jump are taken from the FASTWÜRMS: DONKEY@NINJA@WITCHcatalogue that accompanied a 2007 retrospective at the Art Gallery of York University.
The works São Paulo-based Odires Mlászho hinge on transformations, often employing books, found images, tape, paste and collage. The Brazilian artist’s name is even a work of transmutation. Born José Odires Micowski, Mlászho created his artist pseudonym by borrowing from and combining the names of his two great influences, Max Ernst and László Moholy-Nagy. In a description taken from an insightful studio visit with Goethe-Institut, the following is perhaps the best description of the artist’s working process. “In Odires Mlászho’s work, objects are photos, texts are images, books are sculptures: nothing occupies its original place in the world. With his work the artist proves that things are not such as defined in the way we tend to believe and that after destruction objects can be re-created and reused in a total different way. His work offers us the possibility of entering a world with a completely new kind of perception: it is our world, all the original elements are there, but this world is truly and deeply transformed.
For works which Mlászho debuted earlier this summer at ‘Inside/Outside’ at the Venice Art Biennale 2013, he weaved individual pages of books until they were connected and bound in an entirely new way. Created with fellow Brazilian artist, Hélio Fervenza, the book sculptures rely on an intricate twisting of possibilities which are visually engrossing and immediately approachable, a difficult feat considering the complex theories behind the work.
Michael Massaia is a documentary style photographer who specializes in black and white film. His “Lost: Las Vegas Call Girl Cards” series touches on the over-saturation of advertising, commodification, waste, and salaciousness within our culture. In his own words: “The photos were taken with my modified 8×10 camera with two 100 watt flood lights mounted to it. All of the images were captured on black and white film developed in Pyro. I then handmake split toned silver gelatin prints for each one. The images were all captured at night on the ground/street or on the grass, where they eventually get thrown after they are handed out along the strip in Las Vegas.”
Polish photographer Pszemek Dzienis portraits use fashion industry digital manipulation techniques to create subtle and naturalistic effects his photographs operate somewhere between reinforcing and unsettling received notions of beauty.
Unlike most sandcastles, Sandcastle Matt’s creations appear wholly organic; as if birthed from the sea, his structures resemble organisms composed of some primordial tissue, emerging like great unknown beasts from the deep. The artist uses wood, sticks, or vines as a base for these abstract visions. Later, he covers the sculptures in sand using a special technique you might recall from your own childhood: mixing sand and beach water, he creates a sort of paste, which he allows to fall from his hands in drips, which eventually dry and harden.
The artist must carefully construct the bones of the structure according to mathematical law so as to prevent it from toppling over when weighted; the arresting marriage of calculated geometry and unpredictable, organic-looking dribble results in a uniquely seen vision, one that is not easily discerned as either natural or manmade. It is, in fact, both, though one of Matt’s images was circulated on the blogosphere as a meme and mistakenly identified as the startling result of lightning hitting sand.
Like any good sandcastle, Matt’s architectural monuments allow for imaginative play. Viewers are invited to wonder, to make up stories (viral meme or no): are these the relics of some ancient, tiny civilization? The bones and flesh of a sea monster? Seen through the archway of one of Matt’s distinctive structures. the entire Boston skyline is dwarfed, silhouetted as if reflected in some strange mirror; seemingly against all natural law, his castles balance effortlessly, stretching out to the waves before them. (via Colossal)
Whimsical mixed media work from west coaster Adam Baz. His mystical drawings unfold with simple yet refined details and bursts of color. Also reminds me a little bit of of Zachary Rossman’s work, which is definitely a good thing.
Sometimes reflection is more powerful than projection. In Shirin Abedinirad’s mirror installations reflection means seeing the sky change into something else or enhancing an ancient setting by expanding scale and perspective. By showing these in a different light an alternate reality is born. In “Evocation” Shirin fills the barren desert with round mirror discs reflecting the sky which become reflected pools of imaginary water. The precious commodity is shown with laser like precision in its alien environment. As the light and environment change at different times so does the liquid mirage depending on how the sand and wind blow over the mirrors.
In “Heaven on Earth” ancient architecture provides impetus to another reflection. It prompts the viewer to recognize shape and its relation to space. The reflective material is placed on a staircase which makes something grander than what it already is. It turns an already spiritual place into more using the mirror’s ability to expand and see upward as a symbol for the great unknown.
Shirin can be considered a conceptual artist since most if not all of her work is steeped in ideas that transport and transform. She’s also a great illusionist by how she uses the real to create something ethereal and imaginary. (via bored panda)