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The Perfectly Grotesque Paintings Of Peter Saul: Shaking Down Politics Since The 1960’s

Peter Saul - Acrylic on Canvas1

Peter Saul - Acrylic on Canvas2

Peter Saul - Acrylic on Canvas

Peter Saul’s perfectly grotesque; strangely cartoonish paintings are filled with political and anti-political content. Having been born in the 1930’s, he has lived through an immeasurable amount of political turmoil. His highly illustrative paintings come bursting with endless social commentary, with more than just a bit of humor. Associated with the Chicago Imagists and the west coast Funk Artists, Saul’s style contains heavy influences from pop culture and surrealism. His distinctive style is harshly cartoonish due to the brilliant colors and flattened space. The characters in his paintings have bizarre, exaggerated features such as big, bulging eyes that pop out of the person’s skull, and tentacle-like appendages that bend and stretch clear across the composition. Although this may remind you at first of the cartoons you watched as a kid, examine the paintings longer and you will see enormous nude body parts and plenty of oozing bodily fluids. These hilarious and misshapen characteristics further express his thoughts on these characters; some real, some fiction.

Although Saul’s style is derived from sources many may see as lowbrow, his skills as a painter and an artist cannot be denied after seeing his complex, multifaceted compositions. Saul is a master at taking silly, iconic imagery from pop culture and mixing it with the grim, violence of reality. Experiencing his paintings is a journey through time, as they include imagery of the Vietnam War, Martin Luther King Jr., and Ronald Reagan. However, the messages and situations depicted in these scenes still ring true today. Peter Saul’s long art career is memorable to say the least. You can see his powerful work in person at Venus Over Manhattan gallery in NYC where his exhibition From Pop to Punk will be on display until April 18th.

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Customized USB Drives By Memory Direct Gives The Freedom Of Choice To Photographers

USB Memory Direct

photo usb packagingUSB Memory Direct

Customized USB drives have swept the photography industry by storm in the past few years. They’re a creative, fun way to connect with customers and potential clients, while also solving one of the biggest problems photographer’s have had with digital delivery.

In the past, professional photographers like Marirosa Anderson usually gave out copies of their photos on CDs because they were cheap and easy to burn. But she soon began to notice, like many others in the industry that began to hurt her brand image. After spending so much money with a shoot, clients felt as though this was a rather dull way to have their photos delivered. Not to mention, more people everyday can’t use CDs since the new laptops and desktops aren’t coming with optical CD/DVD drives anymore.

At the same time, simply sending an email proved to be difficult, time consuming, and didn’t offer photographers like Jayson Mullen any opportunity to really spread his brand and company image.

Custom USB drives from USB Memory Direct are a creative, original way to freshen up your digital delivery. They take your logo or brand artwork and customize it just the way you want it onto one of their hundreds of usb styles. Can’t find something you like? UMD can also create customized 3D shaped USB drives as well, so you can basically make your own style.

They do all the work, but you have all the creative freedom to make them fit who you are just right.

Visit usbmemorydirect.com today and receive 10% off on your first order of 50 to 1000 drives. Just use the promo code: 10%DECAY2015

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Enchanting Flower Lamps That Bloom With Life And Light

Studio DRIFT - Installation

Studio DRIFT - Installation

Studio DRIFT - Installation

Studio DRIFT, an artistic team from the Netherlands, has created lamps that blossom and twirl like flowers. “We’ve always been very fascinated by movements in nature, and this is how we started the project that we call Shylight,” the team says.

Part inspiration from the elegant lines of the natural world and part engineering craftsmanship, Shylight is an immediately captivating and evocative installation. The lamps are made from silk, billowing and swirling as they descend 30 feet (9 meters) from the ceiling. The name Shylight is apt: The lamps’ blossoms open invitingly then close again as they retreat, as though they’ve thought twice about being too forward.
“Shylight is a performative sculpture,” says Studio DRIFT in their short video. “When you enter the space, it becomes kind of a dance that is performed in front of you.”
Though Shylight is by turns an installation, a sculpture, and a dance performance, it’s also interactive in a way. The form and beauty of the piece is immediately accessible to the audience, drawing out an emotional reaction and sense of wonder that might not be otherwise possible. Studio DRIFT says:

“The satisfaction in our work comes from the moment the audience engages with the piece and they forget where they are, who they are, and they discover this new world between nature and technology.” (via This Is Colossal)

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Incredibly Colorful Hand-Blown Glass Octopuses By Scott Bisson

Scott Bisson - glass sculpturesScott Bisson - glass sculpturesScott Bisson - glass sculpturesScott Bisson - glass sculptures

Scott Bisson is an Oregon-based glass blowing enthusiast. Ever since he bent a piece of glass over a flame in his high school Chemistry class when he was seventeen, Bisson has been passionately creating beautifully colorful hand-blown glass creatures. Working as a flame and furnace worker, he is well accustomed to the world of heat and molten materials and works prolifically. He has been creatively active for nineteen years, and now specializing in borosilicate flame-work, Bisson has created work for over 80 galleries across America. These snakes, octopuses, lizards and squids are but a small sample of his many endearing pieces.

Bisson creates whimsical representations of the animal and natural world around him – including many different types of flowers, reeds, corals, reptiles, insects and bugs. Each are a labor of love and have an incredible amount of detail to them. The artists explains his obsession with getting it just right:

I put a little bit of myself into every work of art I create. That is how I breath life into each piece. If I don’t lose a piece a day from getting in over my head, then I am not pushing myself hard enough. Skill is the raw material of a great piece, and drive and energy make it take shape. (Source)

His perseverance, dedication and risk-taking shows in each piece. To see more of his curvaceous, elegant designs, visit his website here. (Via Bored Panda)

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Alícia Rius’ Striking Photos Showcase The Disturbing Beauty Of Sphinx Cats

sphynx-cat-photos-by-alicia-rius-25 sphynx-cat-photos-by-alicia-rius-5 sphynx-cat-photos-by-alicia-rius-3 sphynx-cat-photos-by-alicia-rius-8

Los Angeles-based photographer Alícia Rius captures the beauty of sphynx cats in her dramatic series aptly titled Sphynxes. Placed against a stark black background, the photos highlight the incredible characteristics of the fur-lacking animals. Where their coat would normally cover up folded skin and birth marks, here we see it all. And, we get a sense of just how simultaneously fragile and powerful these small creatures are. If they sit a certain way, it shows every bone in their spine. Muscle definition, prominent cheekbones, and their impressive claws are all visible in ways you wouldn’t see from other breeds of cats.

Sphynxes were developed through selective breeding in the 1960s, and it’s not everyday that you see one. Especially on the Internet, it seems that fluffy cats are shared over and over again. But, through Ruis’ stunning photographs, she proves that these felines have their own type of ominous-yet-regal beauty.

Ruis’ Disturbing Beauty Of Sphynx Cats is an ongoing project. If you have a Sphynx and live in Los Angeles, please contact her at [email protected] and include a photo of your cat to be considered. Find out more on her Facebook and follow along on Instagram.

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Sybille Paulsen Uses The Hair Of Women Undergoing Chemotherapy To Create Symbolic Necklaces

Sybille Paulsen - Fiber artisan Sybille Paulsen, Tangible Truths - Fiber artisan Sybille Paulsen, Tangible Truths - Fiber artisan Sybille Paulsen, Tangible Truths - Fiber artisan

Sybille Paulsen is a fiber artisan and designer who crafts beautiful and symbolic artifacts from human hair. As she writes on her website, “Hair is a unique and enchanting material that evokes a lot of sentiment” (Source) — as part of our physical identities, it is integral to the way we see and understand ourselves, and as it grows it signifies both personal change and transformation.

The loss of one’s hair as a result of chemotherapy is a devastating change, representative of the emotional and physical trauma of the disease. To try and help people understand this loss, Sybille has embarked on a project to turn the hair of cancer patients into beautiful necklaces. The project is called Tangible Truths, plural because it refers to the diverse experiences of each woman enduring illness and treatment, “tangible” as it transforms abstract pain — the loss of hair — into a touchable, wearable art piece imbued with sentiment and hope. As Sybille writes:

“The loss creates something new and the helplessness is juxtaposed against a tangible artefact. This object can be the introduction to an exchange of difficult feelings that are otherwise hard to communicate.” (Source)

Visit Sybille’s website, Facebook, and Instagram to learn more about Tangible Truths. There is also an option to donate and help keep her love-infused project going. (Via DeMilked)

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Thousands Of Metal Disks Come Together To Form Valay Shende’s Moving Political Sculpture

Valay Shende - sculpture Valay Shende - sculpture Valay Shende - sculpture Valay Shende - sculpture

For over 4 years, Indian artist Valay Shende put together his politically-loaded sculpture, now on show as a part of the group exhibition Migrating Histories of Molecular Identities at the Bhau Daji Lad Museum in Mumbai. Transit is a life size truck with 22 people standing on the back of it and has intensity to it, with a very moving back story. The structure is an intricate piece, made up out of thousands of metal disks all soldered together, and printed with the faces of the farmers who committed suicide from the Vidharba region and their families on them. The wing mirrors on either side of the cab have video footage of London, Mumbai and Dubai playing, to give the impression the truck is literally in transit. Shende says:

It gives a feeling that the truck is moving, but the people are actually not going anywhere, just like in real life. (Source)

Aimed at raising awareness of the increase in farmer suicide and starting a conversation about the larger political issues in India, Shende has created a powerful visual statement. This social awareness is the backbone of his practice.

Valay’s works are in subtle ways, his attempts to question the maladies afflicting urban societies and humans today. He is a keen and sensitive observer of his surroundings and is concerned about the common’s mans trials and tribulations of day-to-day life. He feels an artists owes a responsibility to the society and firmly believes an ideal world can be re-created. He wishes the audience to reflect upon the social issues plaguing man today. (Source)

(Via This Is Colossal)

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Evan Penny’s Hyperrealistic And Distorted Human Sculptures Explore Time And Self-Perception

Evan Penny - Sculpture

“Self” (2008).

Evan Penny - Sculpture

“Large Murray” (with Murray) (2008).

Evan Penny - Sculpture

“Young Self, Variation #1″ (2011).

Evan Penny - Sculpture

“Old Self, Variation #1″ (2010).

Evan Penny is a Toronto-based (South African-born) artist who makes human sculptures out of silicone, resin, hair, and pigment. In many ways, his works — especially those he produced in the 1980s (see “Jim”) — are hyperrealistic, with detailed skin textures and lifelike body postures and facial expressions. However, throughout the 1990s and into the 2000s, Penny began to experiment with abstraction, manipulating human proportions and forms to create flattened, stretched, and warped bodies that resemble optical illusions, troubling the perceptual line between digital manipulation and animated flesh. In his more recent works, Penny has implemented computer technologies to scan, distort, and re-scale the figure, which he then recreates by hand.

Two interrelated themes that Penny interrogates in his work include the passage of time and the ever-changing nature of self-perception. As he explores in his works “Young Self” and “Old Self,” for example, self-representation — indeed, identity — is a construction that is never stable; “time, memory, and desire” influence the way we appear and project ourselves to others (and ourselves) (Source). Penny’s work also explores the implications of image manipulation in the digital age, when photo editing and digital reality give us new means of constructing our self-representations, and indeed, evading the naturally-occurring inconsistencies of our real-life identities. As he stated in an interview with Canadian Art:

“With the digital, how we imagine ourselves in time has changed again. We’re starting to comprehend ourselves quite differently, and I’m not sure we fully understand how that is affecting us” (Source).

Despite the seemingly playful aspects of Penny’s sculptures, some of his artistic investigations are tinged with sadness as they grapple with the passage of time. “Jim Revisited” (2011), for example, is a recreation of his sculpture “Jim,” which was made in 1985, when his figures were still largely realistic. Jim was a friend of Penny’s who had passed away several years ago. What Penny seems to be achieving in the dialogue between these two works is a series of overlapping personal and artistic reassessments: an examination of the way time distorts memory, as well as how his own artistic practice — infused with years of experience and shifting emotions and new perspectives — has changed. You can read more about Penny’s thoughts on “Jim Revisited” here. Visit Penny’s website to see more of his work.

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