The Burqa, full-body cover up worn primarily by Islamic women of faith, has been subject of much controversy for decades, especially in Western societies. Many say that the garment oppresses women, leaving them astray and without a voice in a world were men dominate them.
Selina Roman‘s Burqa Project takes the Burqa and turns its literal meaning around through the medium of photography and visual composition in order to challenge the viewer’s mainstream knowledge of it.
Roman, a former reporter, hopes to offer her audience a different view point, a new way of seeing, she comments on her artist statement.
Although the Burqa is shrouded in religious significance, I take it out of this context in an attempt to explore these other attributes. Instead of showcasing it as an oppressive garment, I place the Burqa in idyllic Florida landscapes to let it float and billow. In turn, it becomes an ephemeral and weightless object removed from its politicized context.
Apart from Roman’s obvious emphasis on the beauty and femininity that these garments project, she also wants to shed light on the qualities that we often forget to acknowledge. There are many interesting characteristics that the Burqa provides to any that wears it- i.e anonymity, security, and power.
When I met Jonny Negron at the Small Press Expo two years ago, I had him sign a copy of his book, Negron, for me. Rather than just signing his name, he drew on the back cover, which coincidentally is a large picture of his face. Negron completed his doodle with a lizard tongue, drawn with a gold paint pen. This act of an excessive signature is a metaphor for the type of work that he creates. It’s in your face and unapologetic, as well as being stylish, humorous and at times, scary.
Negron is best known for his comics and propensity for drawing large women. They are extremely curvy and wear crop tops, bikinis, and leggings, or nothing at all. Couples engage in sexual acts, and while often NSFW, the drawings don’t have the same vulgarity of something like an ad for a porn site. In an interview with The Comics Journal, Negron says that he doesn’t fetishize these women, and that he’s gotten a very positive response from women regarding his drawings. He goes on to say, “You go to a magazine stand and half the magazines are the same very thin woman. Beauty is not limited to that kind of person. Anyone can be beautiful. That’s part of the statement I’m trying to make with those drawings.”
Oftentimes, Negron’s work is without context. His characters exist in blank space, and his comics focus on a moment rather than a long passage of time. Negron cites films as an inspiration to his work, using their sense of lighting and stasis as a way to pace his sequential art. Looking at his style of drawing, it’s evident that he enjoys manga and video games, but it is more well rounded than that.
Negron is really active on Tumblr and is constantly listing his work for sale in his online shop. He is also an artist with PictureBox, a small press publisher.
Beautiful/Decay contributor and photographer Luke Stettner recently created a gorgeous lookbook for Beautiful/Decay Apparel’s Spring/Summer 09 seasons. The concept behind the shoot juxtaposes evocative objects & optical affects with our apparel, to complement the shirts in abstract ways. Still life images of disco balls, prismatic rings, shag carpets and balloons contrast the light, color and texture of the shirt graphics. Check it out and let us know what you think!
Illustrators who have dabbled in graffiti at some point in there career always have a lil extra something in their work and Phomer is no exception. From employing various types of printing services to applying paint straight to wall, Phomer’s mix of word play, iconic color schemes, and beautiful hand drawn typography has something for everyone.
Minale-Maeda’sInside Out Furniture series is designed specifically to be downloadable in order to reduce enviornmental issues related to transport, costs of stockkeeping, and explore collaborative design and distribution. The concept was to turn pieces inside out to make construction simple, while brackets and structural details become distinctive and attractive features. The connections are 3D printed to suit various sizes of wood, and the crafting is minimal requiring only cutting to length and drilling. Another interesting project by the collaborative duo is the Lego Buffet, a buffet table gorgeously made entirely out of you guessed it, Legos! See more images after the jump!
Transforming the two dimensional into three dimensions has obsessed artists for centuries. Benjamin Muzzin takes an interesting approach to this familiar challenge. Working in conjunction with the University of Art and Design, Lausanne, Switzerland (ECAL) created the video Full Turn. The piece seems to begin with a simple LCD screen television. Soon the screen is spinning quickly and the illuminated design seems to take on a certain depth. Due to the speed of the spinning screen the light blurs and nearly seems to produce a floating light sculpture.
The television screen embodies the two dimensional image, perhaps similarly to the way paintings had for previous centuries. Using a digital screen to “carve out” a sculpture of light is a challenge Muzzin was intentionally sought. He goes on to explain:
“With this project I wanted to explore the notion of the third dimension, with the desire to try to get out of the usual frame of a flat screen. For this, my work mainly consisted in exploring and experimenting a different device for displaying images, trying to give animations volume in space. The resulting machine works with the rotation of two screens placed back to back, creating a three-dimensional animated sequence that can be seen at 360 degrees. Due to the persistence of vision, the shapes that appear on the screen turn into kinetic light sculptures.”
Mike Ruiz presents us with the ultimate (and completely not real) luxury collaboration. The funny thing about this is that it isn’t too far fetched. I can see it now, hundreds of sneaker heads waiting for days in line around their Mercedes dealership for the chance to drive the Michael Jordan Jumpman.