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Miniature Scenes of Industrial Japan Sculpted Using Human Hair

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Japanese artist Takahiro Iwasaki, seen previously meticulously carving topographical maps from electrical tape, has created a new body of work that’s equally as detailed. This time, the artist uses cloth fibers, human hair, and dust to depict miniature scenes of large refineries and power plants. The works were apart of an exhibition at the Kawasaki City Museum earlier this year entitled Out of Disorder.

The charcoal-colored landscapes look like they’ve been under a lot of pressure and are on the edge of collapse. This inspiration came from the industrial rise of Japan, and Iwasaki used satellite images from Google Earth to recreate its old cityscapes. He began forming these sculptures by first soaking towels in ink and then dirtying them to create rags, serving as the base for the delicately-constructed generators and gantry cranes; it’s meant to signify the lands that were leveled in the WWII air raids. These gritty and melancholy scenes depict an era of post-war Japan that is now past, but still recalls the labor and sweat that went into it. (Via JunkCulture, Spoon & Tamago, and Azito Art)

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Melanie Bonajo

Melanie Bonajo’s work is stunning. Her work are like bizarre living effigies to household self-bondage via the bric-a-brac of every day life that so literally and metaphorically “tie us down.” On the one hand hilarious in their absurdity, and on the other depressing in their attempt to lay bare self, domesticity and the modern world, Bonajo’s works are impossible, sexual, beautiful and seductive. Her show opens this May 14th, at PPOW gallery.

 

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Video Watch: Motivational PSAs by JIMMYnADI

Art duo JIMMYnADI (composed of Jimmy Marble and Adi Goodrich) teamed up to make a series of motivational PSAs promoting optimism. Watch them and live today without fear.

“JIMMYnADI are a creative duo living, dreaming and hustling in Los Angeles. Today is tough, creative people are working really fucking hard and making wonderful things but as stated, it gets rough.  These Motivational Public Service Announcements geared towards creative minded people are to motivate people to keep going, have a clear mind and to constantly do your best. It’s tough out there, but we’ll all be okay if we stick together.” – JIMMYnAdi. (via)

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“Exquisite Corpse” Exhibition Explores What It Means To Be Human In the 21 Century

Alfred Steiner

Alfred Steiner

Michael Shaw, Dan Attoe, Austin Eddie

Michael Shaw, Dan Attoe, Austin Eddie

Exquisite Corpse Book

Tom Sanford

Tom Sanford

MASS Gallery in Austin, Texas recently opened its newest exhibition, Exquisite Corpse. The group curated by Beautiful/Deay’s founder Amir H. Fallah features a myriad of artists, with many that we’ve featured in Beautiful/Decay publications and on our site: Dan Attoe, Jay Davis, Bill Donovan, Austin Eddy, Amir H. Fallah, Chie Fueki, Joshua Hagler, Adam D. Miller, Kymia Nawabi, Christopher Pate, Max Presniell, Colette Robbins, Maja Ruznic, Tom Sanford, Alfred Steiner, Michael Shaw, and Dani Tull. In their own way, each artist explores the body and what it means to be human in the modern world.

Exquisite Corpse refers to the collaborative game whose origins are rooted among the Dadist writers as a poetic exercise and the Surrealist later turned into a drawing game. You might’ve played it before; when each person does their part well, it creates an alluring, sometimes grotesque body that was completely unexpected.

This exhibition brings together artists working in both Los Angeles and NYC. As MASS Gallery poetically describes:

A central problem of 21st century life is that the old, psychologically fortifying myths are fading.  Philosophers and scientists have described us as wet robots and biological algorithms, which is perhaps an intentionally shocking way to describe humanity, but these descriptions also seems to get close to a dangerous truth that contains a kernel of abject horror.  It is the artist’s job to create psychologically coherent images which look forward.  It is now a matter of viewpoint whether, when it is all said and done, you are a dead body or an Exquisite Corpse.

In addition to the show, the gallery also produced a full-color catalog that showcases all of the work and an essay by Bill Donovan. The limited-edition, 102 page publication features a beautiful spot UV with fluorescent cover. If you can’t make it to Austin for the show (it’s up until October 25), then the inexpensive-yet-high-quality catalog is totally worth it.

More work by the featured artists as well as sample spreads from the publication after the jump.

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The Arms Project

The Arms ProjectThe Arms Project

The Arms Project is the undertaking of Lisa Manfre (Flickr user frootloops). Not much information is known about her except from the Flickr testimonials she has received: she loves cereal of all sorts and is “probably the most harmonious and nice person on flickr.” That’s saying alot! The pictures sure are sweet though (in multiple senses of the word).

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London’s 2:54 opened for The xx and Once Again Bring Back the Shoegaze Buzz of the 90’s

Sister’s Colette and Hannah Thurlow make up 2:54 who opened up for The xx at their recent LA dates and also played one powerful in-store set at Amoeba Music in Hollywood. I chatted with Colette after their Amoeba performance and she told me how much they love Los Angeles and want to move here… yes please! I for one have always been obsessed with female fronted bands of the 90’s like Cocteau TwinsLush, and Curve (one of my all time favorites) so it didn’t surprise me that Alan Moulder produced their debut self-titled record (he’s married to Toni Halliday from Curve/Chatelaine). Check out their new video for their single Sugar after the jump and see them live when they head back to Europe later this month.

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James Loveday

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Photographer James Loveday produces beautifully polished images for both fashion spreads and his own personal projects. What strikes me about Loveday’s work is that, regardless of whether he’s photographing golden perfection or morning-after mayhem, his work maintains a richness that you can almost reach out and touch.

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Sasha Ira’s Stunning Portraits of Allusive Youth

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Artist Sasha Ira draws stunning portraits of youthful and carefree depictions women. Her collection of work almost acts like an invitation into her sketch book; each drawing exists in a beautifully allusive state, provoking dreamlike moments and open ended thinking. Her work depicts ethereal renderings of young women surrounded by flora and fauna, decorative hints of cloth, and open, fluid strokes of what lies behind. Her style nods to both Art Nouveau, fashion illustration and Japanese anime styles, giving her images a contemporary, fun and youthful feeling. Her work shows a clear influence of Symbolist artists such as Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele (who took their inspiration from Japanese art). There is a very innocent vibe to this work. As if the viewer is given a look into a fantasy of a teenage girl. These drawings are captivating and charming. They give just enough information and intense draftsmen that leaves the viewer intrigued wanting for more, as if having his or her own gleeful trance into a moments past. They are reminiscent of a very adolescent state of mind, having an aloof aura to each one. Ira has created a beautiful series of drawings which truly get in touch with a feminine and whimsical essence, tugging at a spectrum of the freedom of adolescent bliss. 

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