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Patrick Gries’ Photographs Of Skeletons Combine Art and Scientific Inquiry About Evolution

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Patrick Gries’ collection of skeletal photographs are part of his book, “Evolution,” that seeks to make the case for evolutionary theory in a way that has not yet been captured so eloquently through the medium of photography. The project spanned 6 months and involved Gries shooting the photographs of over 250 skeletons at The Museum of Natural History in Paris, as well as 4 other locations in France. These monochrome photographs of skeletons were shot with strong directional light and appear almost sculptural in their presentation, asking viewers to consider the boundaries of scientific study and aesthetic event.

In the book, Gries’ photographs are accompanied with text written by scientist, documentarian, and professor emeritus at Paris’ Museum of Natural History, Dr. Jean-Baptiste de Panafieu. This text describes the skeletons, suggesting how to understand them in the context of history and the patterns of evolution. “New forms have evolved from old ones. Stubby amphibian feet have been transformed into hooves, bird wings and whale flippers. Yet many of the bones in those original limbs have not changed their relationship to the rest. They have just been stretched, flattened or reduced to vestigial knobs. Along the paths of evolution, the vertebrate skeleton has been transformed into similar forms many times over — aardvarks in Africa and anteaters in South America.” You can purchase and see more photographs at Éditions Xavier Barral. (via unknown editors, ny times, and the guardian )

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Awesome Video Of The Day: Lykke Li- Untitled

I love this new video of Lykke Li trapped on an island, decked out in 5 inch heels, and stabbing at the sand with various knives. I have no idea what this is about but going along for the ride. It’s sexy, weird, dramatic, epic, and has a dash of goofiness (check out the knife play towards the end. Full video after the jump.

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B/D Best of 2010 – Kandace Wilson: living canvas photography project

Elyse painting Max

Elyse painting Max

I don’t particularly consider myself an artist and certainly not a painter. But last week, I had the opportunity to be both when photographer & fashion designer Kandace Wilson invited me to participate as a collaborator in her ongoing horse painting project. Kandace grew up at the track, always around horses -the  underlying inspiration behind building this body of work. The end products are a portfolio of stellar images of the painted horse, textiles created from the painted imagery, and fashion designs using those textiles. There were a host of constraints and challenges in the process that make the experience one-of-a-kind: time is your biggest challenge as you’re working with a large furry animal that gets bored quickly and requires both entertainment and breaks; the fur, in both color and texture provides a challenging canvas to work on; working on location requires a certain degree of spontaneity and creativity… but beyond the challenges came some sweet and unexpected rewards both in the finished product that begins to take on a living, breathing life of its own, and in the experience of working with this majestic animal. Kandace continues to search for, and looks forward to connecting with willing participants, artists (and horses) of any variety who would be interested in future horse-painting collaborations.

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Houdini: Art And Magic

The Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles has not one, but two very appealing magic-related exhibitions opening April 28. The first, Houdini: Art and Magic, travels to us from New York. Featuring tons of Houdini-ana, the exhibition looks not only at the historical Harry Houdini, but also at his enduring legacy. To that end, the exhibition includes a number of artworks by contemporary artists inspired by the Houdini legend, including such luminaries as Matthew Barney, Petah Coyne, Vik Muniz and Raymond Pettibon. The Skirball has created a second exhibition to give context to Houdini. This is called Masters of Illusion: Jewish Magicians of the Golden Age, and it focuses on Houdini’s predecessors, colleagues and competitors in both Europe and the US, focusing on the years 1875 to 1948. The exhibition examines more than 40 fascinating careers, largely forgotten, and contains many outstanding objects, all displayed in “period” environments meant to evoke vaudeville stages, Victorian magic parlors and the like. Both exhibitions feature vintage photography, gorgeous promotional ephemera, original props and costumes, and rare documents, and Masters of Illusion includes four renowned automata.

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Home de Caramel

“Dame Otro Papel” is the name of the new music video from Barcelona hip-hop group El Gremio. The video, featuring some nice stop-motion animation, was done by Spanish animation studio Home de Caramel. Check out their site for more work, including some cool industrial design stuff.

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Yasamin Keshtkar

Yasamin Keshtkar’s work is about examining the role of painting through process, material, and the nature of the two dimensional image. Each painting is part of an effort to solidify these elements into an effective/legitimate result. Personal questions about what she is doing are carried from one painting to another, underscoring this foundational dichotomy between painting and reality that she is trying to represent.

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Awesome Video Of The Day: I’ll Be Gone

Everyone knows i’m a fan of simple yet effective videos. This probably wasn’t easy to make but the concept is so simple that it leaves me feeling like like “why didn’t I think of that.” Video by Korb, music by Mario Basanov & Vidis Featuring Jazzu.

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Jon Bocksel

Illustrator and photographer Jon Blocksel makes some cool illustrations. I especially like his “Possibility for a Swear Word” series.  Pretty sure keyboards should start including those symbols.

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