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Rena Littleson’s My 2 Cents

Australian artist Rena Littleson’s “My 2 Cents” is a RENAFIED experience of the gambling world. A colorful and comical creation of paintings, installations, games, fashion, fun and fortune, inspired by the years that Rena worked as an artist for a poker machine company. Check out some of Rena’s earlier work here.

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Bryan Lewis Saunders Draws While Being Tortured

Bryan Lewis Saunders

Bryan Lewis Saunders - Drawing

Bryan Lewis Saunders - Drawing

Earlier this year, artists Bryan Lewis Saunders and John Duncan were invited to perform at the Lausanne Underground Film & Music Festival (LUFF) in Switzerland. The subject of the performance is one that weighs heavily on the collective human conscience: torture.

The instrument of horror in the performance was The Apollo Chair, which was infamously used by Iran’s secret police. Saunders would be strapped down into it; Duncan would wield a stun gun capable of emitting 5 million volts. An altogether harrowing performance piece, the nightmare was completed by a tin can placed over Saunders head in a grim mask that is practically funereal.

In preparation for the performance, Saunders submitted himself to torture by his own hand as well as those of his friends. During each painful session, he created a series of mixed media art pieces named, “While Being Tortured,” a raw collection of first-person suffering. The series is painful to look at, a searing indictment of the terrors and evils human beings are capable of.

Each piece evokes a claustrophobic sense of helplessness, reduced to an almost primitive artform. Some are more coherent, showing clearly the entry wounds, where the bone is being bent and the skin is being torn. Others are jagged jolts of color and furious scribbling, as though coming straight from the lizard brain. The primal shapes and lines are disturbing suggestions of the kind of seismic experience tearing through the artist.

We’ve featured Saunders’ art before as he explored the effects of drug use in his artwork. Similarly, “While Being Tortured” is a visceral window into others’ experiences in a way that might not be accessible otherwise. “In no way do I wish to equate my experiences with [victims of torture] or belittle their experiences with my art,” Saunders says. “My goal was simply to create a different way of bringing awareness to something that is currently happening in over 200 countries throughout the world.”

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Jae-Hyo Lee’s Exquisitely Smooth Wooden Sculpltures Give Tree Trunks A Second Life

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Jae-Hyo Lee’s latest work is a true work of perfect imperfection. He works with the imperfect forms and patterns of wood and reworks them in order to produce smooth, polished, and functional works of art. The combination of the wood’s natural shapes and the work he puts into the wood himself make for a series of pieces that are a perfect balance of nature and the presence and interference of man in nature. He creates a sort of hyper perfection which relates our relationship with beauty to our relationship with nature.

The process of Lee’s work is equally interesting to note: he spends time assembling an assortment of bits and pieces of wood, which he then spends time polishing and burning. This process allows him to rework the structure of the wood and create the meticulous shapes that can be seen in the final product.

Lee’s work is however not only a process of creation: he expresses the way in which he works very much with the natural structure of the wood, He says that he likes to “ make the most out of the material’s inherent feeling”, which underlines the fusion of nature and the man made. His project is full of a positive energy that brings a new perspective on the roles of wood its presence in our everyday lives. The fact that his series includes both sculpture and furniture adds to its beauty and complexity.

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Artist Peter Combe Creates Stunning 3D Portraits Using Paint Swatches From The Hardware Store

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Artist Peter Combe transforms household paint swatches to create stunning 3D portraits. Using the full color spectrum of 1,100 colors, the artist prepares his palette material by manipulating the swatches either into tiny discs by punching or miniature strips by shredding.  He often works in series of repetitions, allowing him to recreate the same image with the aim of experimentation. The potential of each renderings is endless as he uses color based on tonality and not on hue and can transform each work quite drastically depending on his choices. Combe is interested in “how the implementation of a single colour, when applied to a small incremental tonal range, can transform a work either subtly or substantially.”  His work, formulated through an intense and meticulous layering process, can be compared to a pointillistic method of translating color, tone, and space. His work is also reminiscent of early printers, xerox and copy machines, in which images are built through a separation of color, resolving the picture one hue at a time. Another aspect of the work, Combe explains, “is the constant change and flux that is mostly produced by the viewers changing vantage points, an effect that is difficult to imagine whilst not being present before the work. These artworks do not photographer well. It is Impossible to capture the kinetic element – an element whereby the viewer’s motion or movement dictates the artworks transformative component.” There is a notion of fleeting reality when experiencing the work— just as each portrait is in of itself physically fragile — each image, as it becomes manipulated through movement, light, and space, becomes precious, as the viewers’ experience of the work is consistently shifting, making every interaction with the work unique. 

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Design Watch: Martina Carpelan


Martina Carpelan’s clever utensil set is called “For Men with Hammers But No Manners” and I’m sure we’ve all sat next to someone who has literally sawed at their food, shoveled soup and plowed through their salad.

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If You Can Read This The World Didn’t End. Here’s Some Photos Of Explosions Anyways

Well folks as the title of this post suggests If you are reading this chances are that the Mayan Apocalypse didn’t come. I know you are all let down that it’s just another day on the blue planet but you can all lick your wounds while you check out the brilliant work of Danish photographer Ken Hermann. Not only does Ken take exquisite photos of explosions but his series on skateboarders and sidewalk surfers deserves a look or two as well. (via)

P.S. Don’t be sad about the apocalypse. We’d be sad if you weren’t around!

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Tamara Kvesitadze Creates Two Lovers, Two Seperate Monumental Sculptures That Merge Into One

Tamara Kvesitadze - Sculpture 8 Tamara Kvesitadze - Sculpture 9

A tragic love story interpreted and represented in real life. Georgian sculptor Tamara Kvesitadze has created in real life the two characters who, despite their love, cannot be together. The sculptures are made out of metallic discs and are moving daily, embracing each other and parting in different ways.

Tamara Kvesitadze’s ‘Man and Woman’ installation depicts Ali, a Muslim boy and Nino, a Christian Georgian princess. It’s a symbolic representation of the Soviet Russia invasion which forces the two lovers to separate and leave for opposed directions. This tale is inspired by a novel by Azerbaijani author, Kurban Said.

The sculptures are 8 meters (26 foot) tall and are moving every day at 7pm for 10 minutes in the seaside city of Batumi in Georgia. If we look at the video above, we notice that as the sculptures move the metallic discs fit together and the bodies merge. The purpose behind this installation is to illustrate how elements, within a world where everything and anything is moving, can be synchronized and create attraction. (via Juxtapoz)

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Visual Dictionary- Unusual Words Explained Through Witty Illustrations


Scripturient: Possessing a violent desire to write.


Acersecomic: A person whose hair has never been cut.


Biblioclasm: The practice of destroying, often ceremoniously, books or other written material and media.


Dactylion: An anatomical landmark located at the tip of the middle finger.

“A-Z of Unusual Words” is a self-initiated project by Irish based graphic art duo The Project Twins. It depicts “strange, unusual and lost words” explained through a set of beautifully crafted minimal illustrations and visual wit.

According to the artists, James and Michael Fitzgerald, “the images explore the meaning behind the words, which are sometimes even more strange and unusual”. The bold and simple aesthetics of these illustrations resemble Bauhaus’ style of conduct through style and form.

The artist statement of Project Twins points out: “Curiosity, humor and wit are a predominant feature in their work. <…> They are interested in observations and oddities and enjoy taking the familiar and turning it into the surprising. The series of “A-Z of Unusual Words” has been exhibited during Design Week Dublin in 2011 and was also awarded a Merit in the 3X3 Proshow and featured in 3X3 Illustration Annual 2012.

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