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McDonalds X Graffiti- A One Sided Collaboration

Apparently McDonalds is embracing graffiti with full force and using it as part of their greasy interior decoration. This is only happening in France and Japan so far but  if we’re lucky we’ll have some graffiti wallpaper in the Boise Idaho stores in no time. What’s worse than graffiti in the crappiest fast food spot on earth you ask? Graffiti in the crappiest fast food spot on earth being used without the artists permission or compensation. Sure the graffiti writers didn’t ask for permission to paint your city streets but something about this just doesn’t feel right. Next thing you know we’re going to be eating  a McBansky or a Space Invader fries. What do you think? Should the artists get compensated or can Mcdees do as they please?

Read more background info about McDonalds graffiti campaign after the jump.

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Famous Paintings Photoshopped Like Modern Fashion Models

gif_565x396_21efa2Titian, Danaë With Eros, 1544gif_565x362_fed333Sandro Botticelli, Birth of Venus, 1486gif_565x313_698da2Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres, Grande Odalisque, 1814gif_565x558_b68f2aRaphael, Three Graces, 1504–1505

Unfortunately, today’s media offers a limiting vision of female beauty, urging all women to have slender waists and full chests. Bodies that deviate from this standard are tossed by the wayside by publishers and media giants, photoshopped into figures that conform to an often impossible ideal. But it wasn’t always like this; Baroque painters like Titian and Peter Paul Rubens idealized fuller figures, imagining their nudes with sensuous curves of the flesh.

Lauren Wade, a senior photo editor for Take Part, has seen firsthand the digital nipping and tucking that goes on behind the scenes in the publishing and entertainment industry. In response to the societal obsession with “perfect,” unrealistic female bodies, Wade has digitally altered Renaissance, Modernist, and Post-Impressionist masterpieces to mimic the ways in which fashion models and celebrities are edited today. By releasing a series of gifs showing the extreme lengths to which industry standards alter the human form, she hopes to bring awareness to the fact that what we see in the magazines is entirely unrealistic and to remind us that “beauty” comes in all shapes and sizes.

Here, the female subjects of Paul Gauguin and Edgar Degas, once considered to be idealized, get uncomfortably slim waists and oversized breasts. Raphael’s three graces, once representing the characteristics of female perfection— charm, beauty, and creativity— are also cruelly altered. The goddess of beauty herself, Botticelli’s Venus, doesn’t conform to 21st century societal standards, and she too is deeply changed. Even Titian’s Cupid gets a makeover. Wade’s work reminds us that definitions of “beauty” are in constant flux; as the centuries pass, we set one arbitrary ideal before another. In the end, aren’t all figures lovely and worthy of artistic representation? (via Design Boom)

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Conor Backman’s The Other Real At Nudashank

New York based Conor Backman recently opened a solo exhibition entitled The Other Real at Nudashank in Baltimore. From the press release: “Backman’s work conflates and oscillates between sculpture and painting, authentic and simulation, material and image, ironic and actual. For this exhibition Backman will present pieces informed by visual illustrations of otherness, physicality, mimesis, and deception in classical mythology and allegory. Specifically, examples that have been sited or recontextualized in modern psychology and philosophy as metaphors for the unconscious, perception, desire, and understanding.” The show in on view through April 28th, 2013.

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Tenko

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Swiss artist Tenko‘s work seems to represent a twisting, flawed humanity that we try to forget. Looking at his work I’m very conscious of the fact that my supposedly higher thoughts and feelings all rely on a system of organs, pumps, and fluids to exist and no amount of perfume is going hide the fact that we are simply beasts of flesh and bone. Maybe it’s all those perfectly modeled legs or even the grotesque facial expressions but I feel like I’m definitely gonna have to exfoliate tonight.

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Interview: Jeff Soto

Jeff Soto recently opened his newest exhibition, “Turning in Circles” at the Riverside art museum last weekend. Many of Soto’s works include references to the natural world and organic phenomena, whether in his titles such as “Cold Ice Age,” “Butterfly Swarm,” “Wild Growth,” or within visual iconography, ranging from plant-like root tendrils curling around the frames. Yet within these seemingly pastoral suggestions, Soto overlays a grid of human technology, destruction, violence. Highly influenced by graffiti, illustration, murals, comic book art and other forms of non-traditional visual expressions, Soto creates a fanciful hyper-colored world that playfully examines the age old battle between man, machine and nature, played out through technicolor characters and settings. 

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The Magnetism Behind Danielle Nelson Mourning’s Photography

Danielle Nelson Mourning - PhotographyDanielle Nelson Mourning - Photography Danielle Nelson Mourning - Photography

If you take a peek at Danielle Nelson Mourning’s blog, you will find wonderfully candid observations about places, things, or people she’s encountered and how they influence her creative perspective. For instance, there is a post about Marchus who has Stargardt, a rare eye condition. Mourning writes about his desire to experience more smells in artwork, specifically, “leaves in a forest which change constantly depending on light.” Then, there is Tod Papageorge’s brave encounter with Garry Winogrand which leads to a lifelong art-filled friendship. Mourning talks about this pair with honest admiration.

Each quick note or meditation brings us back to Mourning’s own body of work– drawing us deeper into the magnetism which aids in cultivating her own quietly powerful narratives. It’s an appreciation for the human condition and all its ephemeral passions. Although Mourning started out in the commercial world, it’s clear her heart transcends that superficial artifice.

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Stuart Semple

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After dying and coming back to life, Stuart Semple decided to become an artist. After years of hard work (and a controversy beginning with one of his sculptures, and ending with his smuggling his work into Charles Saatchi’s gallery), Semple has been able to get his name out. I love his quirky sensibility and use of color. (You might remember his happy pink clouds which he floated above the streets of London last year.)

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Studio Visit: David Ball’s Fantastic Fantasy Worlds

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David Ball creates the kind of art you need to see in person, so you can get right up close to every piece and fully immerse yourself into the fine details of his fantastic fantasy worlds. I’m forever in awe of his mixed-media collages and I’m always trying to figure out how he makes all his works look like paintings, even though I thoroughly know that they’re assembled from thousands of magazine clippings. At least some of the photos below by Shaun Roberts give a rare glimpse into David’s unique and beautiful process, that makes my brain simply explode with joy. And right now, I’m just super jealous of every art fiend living San Francisco, since David will be featured in the group exhibit “Harum Scarum” at 111 Minna Gallery that opens on February 2nd and runs until February 25th.

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