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Steve Cutts Satirical Illustrations Expose What’s Wrong With The World Today

Steve Cutts - Digital IllustrationSteve Cutts - Digital AnimationSteve Cutts - Digital IllustrationSteve Cutts - Digital IllustrationHave you ever been staring at the screen on your phone so long that you feel like a zombie? Well, Steve Cutts illustrates this bizarre technology, zombie-like phenomena as a terrible reality. His vividly colored illustrations and animations cleverly and satirically portray contemporary society as a series of greedy monsters, zombies, and hollow-eyed humans with no trace of humanity. Each scene exposes the sad truth of what is wrong with the world today, with money hungry men and dismal humans being completely controlled by a piece of technology. He uses a graphic novel-like style, full of bold colors, with an intensity that will stay engrained in your mind for years to come. The London-based artist illustrates and animates depictions of familiar characters like Roger and Jessica Rabbit in a somewhat humorous, but undoubtedly dark way.

The abysmal world that is portrayed is one of shallow intentions and hopeless monotony. Steve Cutts’ work leaves us questioning our own society and our role in it. He points a stern finger back at the viewer in his vibrant, unforgettable work. Displaying the ‘rat race’ we all find ourselves in as one with actual rats, it shocks us into contemplation. These rats are not only stuffed into small places, but also caught and killed brutally in a trap. Steve Cutts’ work is insightful, intriguing, and incredibly well done, however, this is not a world that is appealing to the masses. Make sure to check out his full animations on his website. (via Bored Panda)

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Jonpaul Douglass’ Amusing And Surreal Photographs Of “Pizza In The Wild”

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Los Angeles-based photographer Jonpaul Douglass gives us a glimpse into the secret lives of pizzas in his series Pizza in the Wild. These strange and amusing images are just that – perfectly-shaped pies that are alone in this crazy world, draping themselves over street signs, satellite dishes, and even a pony.

These photographs were inspired by a graffitied image of pizza that Douglass saw in his neighborhood. He was tickled by the sight and decided to replicate it using the real deal, but wanted a very specific type of pizza. It had to be the quintessential pie, like the one the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles would devour. Douglass found the perfect pizza in the form of Little Caesar’s $5 pepperoni pizzas.

All told, Douglass has gone through 20 pizzas or so in his series. In an interview with Global Yodel, he reveals that some are better kept than others:

Much of time I will pick up two pizzas and then after I run around town photographing them I will put them in my fridge in case I get another opportunity  If you look at the series you can see that some pizzas are fresh and some look to be days old. This works because some situations call for a floppy pizza and some call for a stiff pizza. I also must admit that there has been times where a used pizza gets eaten anyhow, it’s tough to ride around with a freshly baked pizza and not be tempted. (Via Neatorama and Global Yodel)

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Exploring The Los Angeles Art Scene With Me!

EXPLORING THE LOS ANGELES ART SCENE
Somehow along with doing Beautiful/Decay, making my own art and occasionally sleeping, I have also been teaching a class called “Exploring The Los Angeles Art Scene” at UCLA for the last six months. The word “teaching” actually might be a bit misleading as we don’t meet in a classroom, and there are no tests or lectures. It’s more like a series of field trips that we take to some of the most exciting galleries, artist’s studios, and collections in and around Los Angeles. We meet at a new location on the first Saturday of every month and get an insiders view into some of the major (and aspiring major) players in the LA art scene. I never bothered posting about the class on here but it occurred to me that it may be interesting to some of you out there in blog land.

 


Starting in January I’ll be teaching the class once again and visiting a whole slew of new galleries and artists all around town. There are around 25 slots for the class and half are already filled so If you’re looking for something fun to do on Saturday mornings sign up and join professor Amir!

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Mickael Jou Combines Photography And Dance To Defy Laws Of Gravity And Levitate Through The Air

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Mickael Jou - Photography

Mickael Jou - Photography

The intensity and electricity in Mickael Jou’s photography can only be matched by his equally immaculate dancing skills. In his series Air Through my Ashes, Jou captures the precise positions of his dance through the lens of a camera. Each movement, leap, and bend is shown being done not on a stage, but through city streets, in breathtaking nature, and even in a grocery store. Jou, now living in Berlin, was trained as a dancer, and started out dancing through the streets of Paris. He got the idea to photograph himself after so many tourists began taking pictures of him as he danced. He then taught himself how to use a camera and turned his dancing into frozen moments in time where he can levitate and defy gravity.

Jou’s dance positions are turned into still statues that pulsate with energy in each photograph. The incredible scenery of the images is almost as breathtaking as Jou’s suspension in mid air. The series has a kind of magic to it that transports the viewer into a world where your feet never need to touch the ground. What makes each composition so dynamic is not only the sheer power felt in the dancer’s stance, but also the addition of a scarf in the dance movements. This scarf that often appears adds color and balance to the rhythm of each photograph as it floats alongside this multi-talented dancer. Jou combines these two art forms harmoniously to create ethereal and graceful photographs. He explains how using these two mediums further his creative vision and expression:

My self-portraits help me express the emotions that I feel while dancing. Dance is a very powerful art form, and I try to translate my emotions into my photography.

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Cleverly Designed Sustainable And Interactive Food Packaging By Tomorrow Machine

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This Too Shall Pass, 2012. Oil package. - A package made of caramelized sugar, coated with wax. This package is made for oil-based food.

This Too Shall Pass, 2012. Oil package. – A package made of caramelized sugar, coated with wax. This package is made for oil-based food.

This Too Shall Pass, 2012. Oil package. - To open it you crack it like an egg. When the material is cracked the wax do no longer protect the sugar and the package melts when it comes in contact with water.

This Too Shall Pass, 2012. Oil package. – To open it you crack it like an egg. When the material is cracked the wax do no longer protect the sugar and the package melts when it comes in contact with water.

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This Too Shall Pass, 2012. Oil package.

Swedish design studio Tomorrow Machine experiments with unusual materials to create revolutionary food packaging concepts. Pursuing the modernist principle of form follows function, Tomorrow Machine unites visual appeal with highly innovative and operational technologies to create both aesthetic and pragmatic design.

Their project This Too Shall Pass addresses the increasing issue of environmental pollution and recycling. Using biodegradable materials, studio has created food packaging that shares the symbiotic life span with the food housed inside. Vividly colored and minimalist in shape, these concept containers for oils, dry foods and liquids disintegrate when the contents they store are used.

“Is it reasonable that it takes several years for a milk carton to decompose naturally, when the milk goes sour after a week? “This Too Shall Pass” is a series of food packaging were the packaging has the same short life-span as the foods they contain. The package and its content is working in symbiosis.”

Besides their environmentally friendly attempts, Tomorrow Machine creates interactive product packaging to shape the innovations of tomorrow. Collaborating with Swedish research company Innventia, designers created self-opening and self-expanding packages based on the use of the 100% biodegradable material they developed together. According to Tomorrow Machine, “this is the new generation of sustainable package design, using materials that are both smart and environmentally friendly”. (via Packaging | Uqam)

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Tim Prince and his Forgotten Boneyard Recall Little Shop of Horrors

Forgotten Boneyard is the 100% real animal bone work of artist Tim Prince. In addition to the one-of-a-kind handcrafted creatures in bone, Prince offers a growing selection of wet specimens through Etsy. To me the real standout of the entire collection is Audrii muscipula (pictured above), an homage to Audrey II, the carnivorous plant from 1986’s Little Shop of Horrors made of mink vertebrae/scapula, box turtle shells, a skunk skull, coyote teeth, and raccoon mandibles. A mouse skull and other bones decorate the soil.  

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Kristy Milliken’s Drawings Of Luscious Fat People Confronts Body Image Issues

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Australian artist Kristy Milliken knows nudity. A former photographer in the amateur porn industry, she became inured to capturing images of stereotypically attractive, thin women on film and moved to paper and ink and a new point of view.

“We see skinny women everywhere. I always forced ‘flaws’ into any of the skinny women I painted, the bigger ladies are what they evolved into. Something far more interesting, of course different pieces have different intent behind them, but there’s a naivety to them. An unaffectedness that I aspire to in my own life. I draw them as beautiful because I think they are.” Source

Milliken’s ink drawings are adorably subversive. The women are gorgeously fat, rosy and delicious. They look luscious, like ripe fruit, plump and sweet. Round tummies, thick thighs, heavy breasts, all kissed with pink and purple, topped with adorable round cheeked faces. They’re sexy, these large women, bound and gagged, smoking and eating, covered with food. The whimsical execution contrasts with the overtly sexual nature of the work.

“It’s a weird time for fat. Fat is both confronting and can be the most normal thing in the world, It’s the context that’s important. Plus I’m sick of all the pictures of skinny girls that seem to be everywhere.” Source

According to the artist, the themes of greed and beauty reoccur in her work, paired in an unusual way. Luxuriant pasta cascades over the women, sating and draping and entangling them. But despite her claim that these images are about avarice, the images feel affirming, even charming.

Body positive art can sometimes be confrontational, taking a focused, warts and all approach. Asserting that she’s not attempting to be political, Milliken’s work feels joyous and sweet— a light perspective on a weighty subject.

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Keith Allen Phillips Creates Subversive Images Of Nude Women Covered With Sweets

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Browsing through Keith Allen Phillips’ website, I found many sexy portraits of nude women, but with his series Messy, he takes his photography in a different direction. Phillips covers his models with a variety of foods from chocolate to Cheetos to sprinkles and icing sugar, and the results are pretty unexpected. Although some are still quite sexual, like when the model looks out at you from below a layer of creamy and chocolate while licking a finger, most don’t have that ‘food sex’ kind of vibe. By the time I reached the ones with a pink marshmallow mohawk, I realized I was barely processing the food as food, anymore.

Recently I wrote an article about Will Cotton, and Phillips feels like the anti-Cotton. Whereas Cotton’s world of food and women is soft, beautiful, and delectable, Messy has a harder edge, and one that I find more appealing. Once again, I’m drawn to the marshmallow mohawk woman, this time screaming out. She looks like a very intimidating alien. I find that although I have some difficulty with the idea of Phillips smearing food all over these women, the women rock it with a powerful presence, which is more than I can say of Cotton’s work. Each artist is experimenting with food, and beauty and sexuality in women. Phillips takes the viewer somewhere they didn’t expect to go. (Via Lost at E Minor)

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