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This Winter, Explore Glowing Castles Built From Massive Quantities Of Ice

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This winter, frozen castles made from innumerable icicles are available for your full exploration. It all started with Brent Christensen, a devoted dad. He moved to Utah with his family, where he built an elaborate winter playground for his daughter, complete with an ice slide, cave, and castle. From there, the concept of Ice Castles was born—a beautiful, crystalline landscape for families to enjoy. There are four locations this season: Midway, Utah; Eden Prairie, Minnesota; Lincoln, New Hampshire; and, for the first time ever, Edmonton, Alberta.

Each awe-striking structure is built by hand. The architects “grow” 10,000 icicles every day, which are then placed throughout the castles for the water to freeze to. As time passes, each individual piece becomes a part of the icy walls and caverns, creating a megalithic labyrinth of tunnels and caves. The structure appears blue, due to the deep thickness of the ice, and the quality of water to absorb all colors of the spectrum. At night, the castles are illuminated with different hues, making it resemble a fairy-tale landscape. Watch the video above for a tour of the Eden Prairie location.

Visit Ice Castles’ website and Facebook to learn more. The sites are open until March, 2016. (Via Fubiz)

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Disturbing and Sweet Paintings Look Like A Dark Alice In Wonderland

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The French digital painter Lostfish creates an uncomfortable yet irresistibly alluring landscape of feminine powers; her bashful, pink-cheeked subjects reign supreme, adorned in precious jewels and sparkling crowns. The artist’s characters are abuzz with their own fertility, as expressed by bouncing nude breasts and lush flowers that seem to spring up from underfoot; also pictured are rabbits and eggs, symbols art historically associated with breeding and copulation.

The artist, influenced in part by 19th century art, works within a Victorian sensibility, reveling in an innocent, doll-like vision of femininity; her subjects, pale skinned and with impossibly delicate figures, become queens, armed with crowns and tridents. Lostfish’s female characters also seem pious, divine even; a few wear dismembered hands as jewelry, reminiscent of religious icons like the hand of God or the hand of Fatima. White flowers with yellow centers, often symbolic of the Virgin Mary in Christian art, stand in the place of youthful, milky nipples.

Yet within Lostfish’s ethereal and seductive images, there seems to linger an ominous supernatural strength within womankind. Where the Victorian woman is domestic and obedient, Lostfish’s heroines roam like wood nymphs, emboldened by their own reproductive powers; in one image depicting a human fetus within a pink oval, a foreboding reptilian creature seems to invade the womb, its grotesque navel in full view. In one painting, doll faces emerge in a group of six from blood red roses, reminiscent of biblical devil. These tempting, enchanting women dress in excess, giving themselves over to material pleasures. In Lostfish’s gorgeous imaginings the female is both delicate and demure, ravenous and dangerous. Take a look. (via HiFructose)

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Provocative Photographs Address Systemic And Institutional Child Abuse

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Erik Ravelo‘s photo series Los Intocables, or The Untouchables, captures children pinned up crucifixion style against the backs of adult authority figures. “The Right to Childhood Should Be Protected” subheads the title of this provocative series that addresses the responsibility of adult figures with regard to the harming of children in various contexts. Ravelo places the children at the forefront of issues such as military occupation, tourism, healthcare, religion, and school violence, asking viewers to consider the potential for abuse within these issues and institutions. More photos and a short video after the jump.

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Sam Vanallemeersch- Two Styles, One Artist

Antwerp-based Sam Vanallemeersch has that rare ability to work in two distinct styles that feed and grow off of each other’s strengths. His one style, full of nuanced detail and dense atmospheres, can entertain the eye endlessly. His other style, which relies on simplified forms that tend to become entangled in a puzzle piece manner is equally as effective. Consistent throughout is an accessible body of work that retains all integrity no matter what approach he takes. His unstoppable production is the reason he has two separate websites packed to the gills, here and there. Jaw-droops.

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Made With Color Presents: Janet Decker Yanez’s Hallucinogenic Portraits

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Janet Deck Yanez

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It’s time for our weekly exclusive artist feature in partnership with premiere website builder Made With Color. Each week we join forces to bring you some of the most exciting artists and designers working today who use Made With Color to create their clean and sleek websites. Made With Color is a website builder that helps artists create gorgeous mobile/tablet optimized websites and allows them to do so in a few minutes without having to touch a line of code.This week we are happy to share the work and website of Janet Decker Yanez.

Nashville, Tennessee based artist Janet Decker Yanez latest series of paintings “Unwinding Sheets” is a psychedelic exploration of portraiture, color, and abstraction. Using furniture moving pads and spray food coloring, Yanez’s experiments have taken her on a hallucinogenic ride full of colorful possibilities.

Discussing this body of work she states:

There’s a death that happens in the moving process: death of the physical space once occupied, of relationships with people and of things that break or don’t have a place in the new home. There’s also new life that happens while unpacking, as demonstrated in this series called “UnWinding Sheets.”

 

After unpacking my whole house and giving away all the boxes and most of the paper—for the second time in less than a year—I was left with roughly 20 large furniture paper pads, “economical, multipurpose, and reusable 3-ply recycled paper.” Some days I just wanted to wrap myself up in one of those blanket-sized sheets and hide away in some old box. As an alternative, I brought them to the studio.

 

Using food coloring and spray-painting techniques, I began creating non-representational heads/portraits. Starting with the basics of facial anatomy, ephemeral, shroud-like faces emerged from these lifeless, linen-like materials approximately 4 feet by 6 feet. Features developed as the coloring puddled or ran depending on whether I was working on a flat surface or vertically and as I used a layering process that included several spray applications and airbrushing.

 

A cast of characters unfurls from this paper that once wrapped and protected all my fragile household items.  Through the title process I found some have namessome speak of their past with terms used to describe the condition of the objects they once wound around, while others merely echo precautionary statements.

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Matthew Cusick’s Defacements

Matthew Cusick is known for his paintings made with maps that we have featured here in the past. Cusick is also creating a body of work he calls “Defacements”. Pages from vintage schoolbooks are found, scraped and sanded to remove all but the page number, an image, and a few chosen words. The artist removes in order to reveal. The result is work that comments on the human condition, the environment, politics, and the physical act of delicate deconstruction.

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Ronit Bigal’s Covers The Body With Biblical Calligraphy

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Israeli artist Ronit Bigal transforms the body into a text. For her “Body Scripture II” series, Bigal uses digital photography overlaid with Biblical text (in Hebrew) and floral ornamentation drawn with black Indian ink to create these stunning images of body calligraphy. The body is exposed and abstracted, the text contouring bodily landscapes and capturing hidden textures and unspoken eroticism. Upon close inspection, the text on the bodies is hard to read. It’s small and intricate, but the overall effect creates a visually hypnotic pattern. Bigal places the text so thoughtfully around the curves of the body that it is hard to believe the text was not drawn directly onto the subjects. Her work also leaves me curious about which passages she placed on particular body parts, and if she was deliberate in the placement.

Her Saatchi profile explains that these images “…are almost abstract and enigmatic, arousing the viewer’s curiosity to discover what are the photographed objects, what meanings lies behind the texts; and whether there is a thematic affinity between them or, perhaps are the associations purely aesthetical?” (via my modern met)

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We’re Moving So Watch Some Pellet Vids!

Hey everyone,
We just moved to our new amazing office and unfortunately our internet isn’t set up so excuse the lag in blog posts.We’ll try to post as much as we can during breaks from unpacking millions of boxes but in the meantime enjoy some fun animations by Pellet! We’ll be back up and posting in a day or two!

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