Football and the defence sector have a lot in common. For example, they both need a strong defence, potent attacks and a capable captain organising everything. NATO Review tries to show how recent changes in the defence industry would look if they were played out on the football pitch.
The defence industry has a new area it needs to defend – itself. With budgets low or falling in many places, with several new entrants into the market, and with a whole new array of non-traditional threats to guard against, ‘business as usual’ in the defence industry is under attack on several fronts. Can the industry adapt to survive? Watch the video below to find out more.
“Your childhoods belong to me now,” says the concept artist Dan LuVisi of his terrifying portraits of beloved cartoon characters turned grotesque and murderous. LuVisi’s chilling series, titled Popped Culture, holds a scathing mirror to Hollywood ethics, to the exploitation that goes on behind the scenes of even the most innocent movie productions. Accompanying each of his images on his blog, the artist, who has a background in comic books and has illustrated for DC’s Batman and Superman, includes short stories outlining Tigger and Goofy’s tragic path to corruption.
LuVisi’s spare text reads quite like a noir mystery novel, filled with darkened, moody diners and mugs of bitter coffee. The characters that we associate with our own youths age, hardened by years out of the limelight. The residents of Sesame Street are seemingly evicted, cast out into a generic urban cityscape simply called “THE STREET.” Seduced by industry executives, Kermit takes a role in a brutal adult film. Those who refuse to compromise themselves for the sake of the industry are defeated, as is the case with poor, piteous Gonzo.
The Disney cartoons fare worst of all, transformed from lovable animals into nightmarish ghouls. Mickey Mouse’s gaunt body grows saggy with age, his small, round ears torn and his slimy tongue dripping hungry drool. Donald Duck’s beak opens to reveal rows of teeth, emerging like claws and cruelly lining a mass of tissue; a tiny drop of blood stains his collar. In these disturbing images, we find both humor and pain, forced to reconcile our nostalgic hopes with the realities of Hollywood corruption. (via Demilked, Huff Post, and Elite Daily)
Janice wu’s work explores how meaning, value, and associations are placed upon things in the material realm. She is interested in how seemingly worthless objects have the potential for whimsy and how the ‘inanimate’ mundane can reveal poetic and narrative possibilities. Through re-imagining the mediocre, the ordinary can become playful and even precious. Working meticulously in pencil and watercolor, her drawings reveal the intricate, tender nature of this medium and reflect the notion of devoting time and contemplation in to the easily overlooked. Through this process of investigating the quotidian, she trains her looking practice towards observing the subtleties in her own lived experiences.
Informed by a mixture of science, geometry & mythology, the intentionality behind artist Dayna Thacker‘s layered landscapes lies in a quest for perfect methodology. She searches through informational systems, ancient patterns and mathematical equations for inspiration, seeking to find a connection between method and an elevated sense of inner peace. “Our inner and outer selves interact, inform and create the other: physical & spiritual, logical & intuitive, intellectual & psychological, conscious & subconscious,” she says.
Translating her research and interests to physical inquiry, Thacker develops intricate repeat patterns that she then hand-cuts into photographic investigations of landscape. The ritual, repeated nature of the cutting echoes aspects of her research process—one has to wonder if this mindful state is achieved in the making, or in the final viewing of these lace-like, multi-layered compositions.
In his latest exhibit, Iced Flowers, Makoto Azuma plays into a cryogenic aesthetic. The principle behind cryogenics is the study of material at sub zero temperatures. Azuma uses this theory to encase exotic bouquets in frozen water and photograph them in various stages of melting. The end result is nothing short of dazzling. Behind a solid block of ice, the flowers become even more alive (than dead), transforming into an army of alien creatures before our very eyes.
On his website, Azuma describes himself as “a flower artist” who has been working with unusual arrangements since 2005. During the course of a decade, he has run a haute couture floral shop in Tokyo, called “Jardins des Fleurs” and his own gallery. He currently operates a botanical research institute under his name. This is where all his present studies take place. An experiment he conducted last year, where he sent a rare bonsai tree into space is right up there with the frozen flowers.
A lot of people confuse the study of cryogenics with the science of cryonics. Both are related but the latter is specific to preserving human life in very low temperatures in accordance with other sciences, in order to prolong and continue good health until better technology comes along. It’s surprising that it hasn’t gotten more mention in recent years. Azuma’s petrified flowers are a type of cryogenics and example of his ability to create art out of a temporary chilled moment. (via mymodernmet.tumblr.com)
In reviewing Hilary Brace’s drawings, the New York Times said, “once in a while you come across an art of such refined technique that it seems the product of sorcery more than human craft…” Starting with the smooth surface of polyester film darkened with charcoal, Brace works in a reductive manner by removing charcoal with erasers and other hand made tools. Despite the photographic veracity of her technique, Brace composes her images without premeditation, through an explorative process that allows them to unfold in unanticipated directions. Her subjects are based upon clouds, water, mist and mountains, but she takes these forms to sublime and unimaginable new heights. As Christopher Knight remarked in the Los Angeles Times, her work is “like a Vija Celmins drawing made Baroque, [it] conjures ephemeral poetics of light and space.” For all their vastness and grandeur, Brace’s drawings are relatively small and intimate. As Leah Ollman observed in Art in America, these drawings “put those two realms – the private and the cosmic – within reach of each other.” (via)
The drawings of Sasha Zivkovic present office workers existing in strange, dystopian universes. He uses various art historical styles and sources to create allegorical transformations. Everyday working life is presented within frameworks such as religious symbolism, zoological observation, and ethnographic documentation. Detailed pencil drawings create zoological mini-habitats with strange medieval perspectives that feel at once displaced and at home in their cubicles and board rooms.
Combining steel cast human body parts with various members of the animal kingdom, Rona Pondick has been riffing on the art world’s fascination with physical transformation for over a decade. Her animal/human hybrid sculptures look like the monsters in my nightmares!