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B/D Best of 2010 – Gehard Demetz

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Gehard Demetz was born in 1972, in Bolzano, Italy. Currently he lives and works in Val Gardena on these amazing woodcarvings. His vision is on point, and his work is nothing short than breathtaking. Check it out.

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Andréanne Lupien’s Amusingly Surreal Series Of Crazy Cat Lovers

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When you think of a someone who’s a “crazy cat person” you might imagine them to live in shambles overrun by felines. In Andréanne Lupien’s series Crazy Cat Lovers, however, that’s not the case. Her amusing photos feature people in their otherwise tidy homes, yet surrounded by their cats duplicated many, many times.

These images celebrate her love of felines, and the initial inspiration was her own cat. Lupien tells us, “I had fun taking pictures of myself with my cat, putting it around me in the room so that the final picture would result in my cat being multiple times in the photography doing multiple actions. That was it!

Crazy Cat Lovers makes light of the cat phenomena. With their Internet presence like videos, GIFs, and photos, felines become more and more popular. This was  my opportunity to fully talk about it.” Lupien says. “To create the photos, I would take my photography kit, put it in my bag and leave to explore the world of some crazy cat lovers. It was a great adventure! I would visit unknown people or I would go to a friends house. It was always a new universe to discover. Every picture had its own essence and energy, its own universe. It was like visiting a person’s unique world.” (Via Yahoo News Tumblr)

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“Thingamajigs” Exhibition

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The upcoming exhibition Thingamajigs, curated by Meenakshi Thirukode brings together individuals whose creative practice cannot be categorized under traditional tags. The show features a plethora of artists who push the boundaries of their practice, including prior B/D featured experimental group Lucky Dragons, B/D staff writer Colleen Asper, and B/D’s own Amir H. Fallah! A bevvy of Beautiful/Decay articles of history and memorabilia (including some of the first ever, hand-photocopied ‘zine versions) will be on display, alongside Amir’s painting. If you find yourself on a spiritual or artistic journey to India, be sure to check out this exhibition at Gallery Open Eye Dreams.

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Sarah A. Smith’s Corroded Gold Leaf Drawings

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Sarah A. Smith corrosive gold leaf drawings

Sarah A. Smith creates shimmering gold drawings with a combination of gold metal leaf, corrosive, ink, and pencil on paper. After she arranges the metal leaf that was mined and manufactured in China, she brushes it with copper sulfate, causing a chemical reaction that tarnishes and corrodes the gold metal along the surface of the paper. In the natural environment, this erosion process can take hundreds of years to complete. “The oxidation illustrates pollution, disintegration, transformation of elements, changes, and the passage of time,” Smith says. The result is an incredibly detailed and textured series that while extravagant is also evocative of restraint because it emerges from a process of decay. (via my modern met and diablo magazine)

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Odani Motohiko

Exceptionally bizarre and fantastical sculptures by Japanese artist Odani Motohiko.

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Nick van Woert Covers Neoclassical Statues In Strange Chemicals

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Combining fiberglass statues with polyurethane, artist Nick van Woert‘s sculptures are swallowed up and overcome by texture and color. Artificial Neo-Classical statues are covered in multi-colored resin in a way that looks like they’ve been caught in the middle of a downpour. The visual weight of the translucent material (and emphasis on it) is something that’s at the center of van Woert’s work. In an article about him on Sight Unseen, the following is said about his philosophy of making:

Figuratively speaking, the idea is that the world we’ve built for ourselves is only as good as the materials we’ve used to build it — these days, that means all manner of plastics, strange chemicals, and the hollow plaster that replaces stone in the replica statues van Woert repurposes.

In the same article, van Woert’s practice is said to be driven by the mantra “you are what you eat.” Essentially, it’s the idea that we’d replace marble statues of Ancient Greek and Roman figures with cheap fiberglass will eventually catch up with us. The things we make now might not hold up the test of time as marble sculptures have. In his work, van Woert attempts to reconcile what it means to uphold the past visually, but not in terms of raw materials.

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Giant Underwear And Towers Of Trash From Wang Zhiyuan

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The work of Chinese artist Wang Zhiyuan turns our attention to the overlooked and discarded.  Whether he is using garbage to make art or making art look like garbage Zhiyuan’s art attempts to draw out a double take, a second slower look.  Zhiyuan has also created giant pairs of underwear – some of huge swaths of fabric others carefully carved.  Some seem like large and ancient bronze panties adorned with a relief addressing the AIDS pandemic.  He’s also made use of refuse to create a dizzyingly high tower stretching to be nearly four stories tall.  He says of the project:

“I thought it would be difficult to make these dead objects interesting or beautiful.  But I discovered that if you bring order to them, you can create beauty.”[via]

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Book Review: The Time After

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We recently received Doug Fogelson’s book “The Time After” in the mail today. One of the catch phrases on the press release is: “Temporal speculation for the post climate change era.” Heavy! Although it’s not as apocalyptic as the Popul Vuh’s 2012 world-termination prognosis, and not as, ahem, temporally speculative (in my opinion) to warrant vast assumptions about the post climate change era, there are some prismatic, multi-exposed layered photographs that time-lapsed-surfaced-ly explore the age old question of nature, man, and their relation to time. Shots of clouds and forests lay side by side by sprawling city streets. It’s certainly an interesting attempt to turn such a tired trope of amateur photography (the double-expose) into the basis for a complicated conceptual framework, though how many “heady” points on the nature of humanity the book makes, I’m not so sure.  Regardless, the book features stunning and creative print lay out and design by Tim Hartford. 

 

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