What started out as a simple past time, has now turned into a full on project viewed by thousands of people on social media each day. Frankfurt-based, Brazilian designer Andre Levy first started collecting coins during his travels and with a steady hand and a great imagination, has been turning them into mini artworks for a few years. With a layer of enamel and a bit of patience, the portraits of Kings and Queens long passed away are transformed into colorful cartoon figures, or heroes from comic books.
The ongoing art project is called Tales You Lose, and features tons of familiar pop cultural faces. Levy paints Marge Simpson, The Fantastic Four, Rorschach from Watchmen, Cinderella, Papa Smurf, Amy Winehouse, Apu, Princess Leia, Albert Einstein, David Bowie – you name it, he’s painted it. Levy says this about his coin series:
We are constantly surrounded by pop figures – in films, in music, comics, and even in gossip magazines. They are sometimes our escape from reality, our fantasies. Coins portray something opposite: the real, the everyday.
This project is about individual expression in opposition to massified [sic] thinking, about how our personal passions are more worthy than things that are imposed to us. The paint brings to the faces of kings and presidents borrowed narratives from other famous characters and unleash individual alternative stories.(Source)
Make sure you check out his Instagram account to see new and old miniature paintings and see how many faces you recognize. (Via Honestly WTF)
SpY is a Madrid based artist who playfully disturbs urban signs and signifiers, often confiscating them, transforming them, then installing them on the street. I love his really simple gestures, like putting orange construction cones on a sculpted bull’s horns–they just have the hilarious edge of an adolescent prankster (who went to art school and secretly adores Duchamp.)
Zach Lewis lives and works in New York. He has just released his book There Are No Sins Here which is a 6″ x 9″ 110 page survey of work from 2010-2012. Lewis describes it briefly saying it is a “A narrative driven documentary photography book reflecting the sentiment of contemporary American life.” It serves as an honest portrait of a twenty-something taking in the city of NY during a time of political unrest. We see the push and pull of organized religion and ideologies of faith. Current events like the death of Osama bin Laden and Steve Jobs are presented as a reminder of the speed and influx of information in our current culture. Joy, paranoia, frustration, and hope are presented in equal measure. You can pick up a copy here.
San Francisco Gallery The Popular Workshop recently opened a solo exhibition by Australian artist Ben Barretto entitled Self Help. From the press release: “Self Help continues Barretto’s ongoing exploration into recursion; with each of the series of works he presents ‘making’ themselves to some extent. That is, the chosen material and its inherent properties inform the process and drive the work into a constant loop of feedback.
Self Help presents iterations of this process over 3 different mediums, including hand woven tapestries made from used climbing rope, reconfigured nylon training pants and a set of oil paintings. Within each of these series, Barretto creates a system through which the material qualities of each medium are unbound and rebound into a continuous ongoing cycle, a cycle which sits in collaboration with the expressive additions of Barretto’s own hand, having these works sit somewhere between assemblage and action painting.” The show is on view through April 12, 2013.
Emilio Gomariz creates gorgeous videos using simple experiments with digital media. Manipulating software’s such as Quicktime and photoshop, keyboard shortcuts, and various saving and opening patterns Gomariz makes transcendental videos that will make you think “Why didn’t I think of that?”More videos after the jump.
Russian graphic designer and artist Yulia Brodskaya draws with paper instead of on it. Her highly detailed pieces are constructed of rolled, folded, and carefully placed strips of color paper. The intricate curls of paper are intriguing in themselves while creating a larger image – it took me a moment to realize what I saw in the top image. Brodskaya’s process and style has garnered her some serious attention. Her long client list includes companies such as Starbucks, Anthropologie, Penguin Press, and HOW Magazine. [via]
What can I say, the recurring imagery of the Luck Dragon from Neverending Story is enough to make me die for Matt Furie’s work. There’s also a series of scary characters that are holding/comforting frail and unthreatening rabbits & children, I don’t know. Amazing.