Photographer Steve Rosenfield’s “What I Be Project” is, as he says, “a social experiment turned into, what is now, a global movement about honesty and empowerment. In today’s society, we are often told to look or act a certain way. If we differ from these ‘standards,’ we are often judged, ridiculed, bullied and sometimes even killed over them. I started this project in hopes to open up the lines of communication, and to help everyone accept diversity with an open mind & heart and empower those who feel they suffer for something they may see as a flaw.”
The project asks participants to write their biggest fear or insecurity somewhere on their body, and then allow Rosenfield to photograph the writing as part of a portrait. Often the subjects write an accompanying statement to the portrait, discussing how the fear has affected their life. The courage required to be a part of the project is meant to be cathartic. Including everyone from high school students to better-known individuals, such as Michael Franti, Kathryn Budig, Paula Van Oppen and Trevor Hall, the project is all about how we define ourselves based on the perception of others’ opinions. Drawing attention to notions such as reputation, stereotype, self-identification and insecurity, Rosenfield’s work is encouraging. It helps a viewer consider what the world might be like without the labels we assign and assumptions we make about ourselves, and people we don’t even know. Learn more about it here. (via theguardian)
Kristian Burford’s art installations meditate on the postmortem state of sexual arousal without a partner present. Nestled in a messy realistic setting, each carefully constructed wax figure seems to sigh inward, recollecting him or herself after an erotic whim has been satiated. However, the intention does not stop there: it seethes and penetrates with primal implications. Encountering each diorama, our own interior worlds are challenged and heightened as we find ourselves cast to confront not so much nudity, but even more so, our own erotic inclinations as possible voyeurs.
Sculptor Thom Puckey has a new exhibit on now at the Museum Centro Pecci in Prato, Italy, called Extreme Beauty. The unexpected combination of classically-sculpted figures paired with implements of death are a definite comment on where society has taken us since Neoclassicism. “The presence of modern weapons in the sculptures makes them seem contemporary in a cheap kind of way, this I realise. I like this suggestion of cheapness, I play into it. Chicks and guns,” explains the artist. Puckey makes “cheap” look pretty amazing, don’t you think?
Ana Janssen’s erie hyperrealistic paintings remind me of the calm before a storm. In most of the work young teenagers sit still and stare at the viewer with an intense gaze while various animals sit on their shoulders, lay in their lap, or attempt to take a bite out of the figures hand.
Bringing nature and humankind together is the purpose of artist Maximo Riera. The Spanish artist is making chairs from wild animals such as elephants, octopus, rhinos, hippos and whales. An homage to the extraordinary creatures we too often take for granted.
It takes the artist approximately 11 weeks to manufacture one piece. With an average of 480 hours spent on the entire process. The process is complex. First, the 3D modeling and then the production achieved with the help of about 30 engineers grouped from five different companies. The animal-shaped chairs are made out of high dense polyurethane and held by a metallic frame. One piece weighs 350lbs.
Maximo Riera is highlighting through the making of these chairs the importance of nature. It’s a subtle metaphor for anyone who wants to hear it, that animals are a innocent presence and that it is human kind’s role to find tame. Like children looking at toys, we are delighted by the idea of perhaps owning one these chairs, or at least try them out. ‘this collection gives us an option of admiring what nature is capable of; this is the main reason why from the beginning I wanted to be faithful to the animal’s physique. this series is an homage to these animals and the whole animal kingdom which inhabits our planet, as an attempt to reflect and capture the beauty of nature in each living thing.’ What about the real ones? The question underlined here is, how can we come closer to nature and respect and live with it? (via Design Boom)
It’s nice to see that professor of drawing at the Sheridan InstituteDavid Poolman practices what he preaches and makes beautiful drawings full of delicate detail and the kind of humor that only a Canadian artist can come up with.