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Andrea Mastrovito’s Installations Are A Plethora Of Animal Life

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Though an artist who truly utilizes a wide-range of materials and media, perhaps Andrea Mastrovito‘s most eye-catching and memorable works are those he creates by collaging thousands of images from books which are installed to create swarming, jungle-like visual configurations. The images are sources from thousands of book, precisely cut-out and arranged, giving the whimsical and unusual feeling that the interior of a house could be covered by swarming bats, or butterflied would cover an entire gallery while sunning themselves.

Inspired partly by H. G. Wells’ famous science fiction novel The Island of Doctor Moreau, Mastrovito’s The Island of Dr. Mastrovito and The Island of Dr. Mastrovito II were installed at Governors Island in New York in 2010. Says the Bergamo, Italy-born artist about his work, “His starting points for this site-specific work are the two most common forms of home recreation—books and television. The title of his installation refers to H. G. Wells’ famous novel The Island of Doctor Moreau, in which the archetypal “mad” scientist experiments upon animals in order to give them human traits. In this “Island,” the artist substitutes himself for the doctor, trying to instill a new life into that which was once alive in a different way (books from paper, paper from wood, and wood from trees). Mastrovito imagines that the outside fauna take control of the abandoned house and become its proper inhabitants. Approximately 700 books were brought under the artist’s knife to cut out real-size images of animals. This trompe-l’oeil, or paper diorama, also suggests the strength of images, the infinite possibilities that knowledge—through books—can give us in order to create and re-create the world that we can only imagine.” (via colossal)

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Jason Hackenwerth’s Massive Balloon Sculpture

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These are much more than simple balloon animals.  Jason Hackenwerth‘s creations float like giant swimming organisms.  His newest creature, Pisces, which recently debuted at the Edinburgh International Science festival is particularly massive.  Pisces is built of thousands of balloons blown up and tied together.  It took three of members of the festival six days to blow up all of the balloons for the 40 foot structure.  The piece now hangs in the Grand Gallery of the National Museum of Scotland through April 14, 2013.

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MMmade

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MMmade have just released three new posters, available for purchase on their site. The posters, called “Order/Disorder,” represent the spaces between order and disorder, as the title implies.  MMmade has a good mix of both commercial and self-initiated works, which you can view on their website. Check out more pictures of their poster series after the jump.

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The Culture Of Thailand’s Ladyboys

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In Thailand, the term ladyboy is a nickname for transgender women, and they are a population often met with intolerance and prejudice. Their place in society is explored through photographer Soopakorn Srisakul’s series Mistress, in which he captures the daily life of his girlfriend and four other ladyboys. They all work at bars and as call girls in the infamous red-light Nana district in Bangkok.

Srisakul’s images are his journey in understanding his partner and the others experiences. There are few positions that are hiring transgendered women, so this community typically finds work in department stores, makeup counters, and cabaret venues. Those that are bargirls generally make better the better wages, which allows them to save up for gender reassignment surgeries.

Mistress presents us with poignant pictures of both work and home. There are moments of dark clubs, sure, but there are also quiet scenes in bright bedrooms. Srisakul writes:

They go out working, come back to their room, go relaxing outside, occasionally go back to visit family in the countryside, and then go to work. They, like anyone else, just try to get by. They laugh for joy, cry for sorrow, they work to earn a living, and they have an argument with their boyfriend, just like anyone else. In this sense, what makes them so different from us as to warrant a harsh treatment from the moral society, and do they deserve it at all? (Via Feature Shoot)

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Trevor And Ryan Oakes’ Intricate Sculptures Made Out of Thousands Of Matchsticks

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Twin brothers Trevor and Ryan Oakes create works which investigate and analyze perspective, perception and the shapes that are intrinsically connected to the way we view the world around us. In addition to incredibly-detailed renderings on curved paper, the brothers Oakes create particularly interesting sculptural works from metaphorically-loaded materials, like the matchstick sculptures pictured above.

Though made from simple materials, their construction was anything but. The Colorado-born, New York-based artist’s match sculptures were difficult to create, as the review in Ignant documents, the “first form was a small grid of matchsticks which curved in two directions to become a portion of the surface of a sphere. After that, they set out on building an entire dome, starting with a ring of matches on a table surface upon which additional rings were stacked. The form didn’t quite want to emerge into a dome though unless a small amount of space was manually added between the match heads. Curiosity eventually caught them an they began to look for a form that would emerge if they didn’t manually space the heads and let the matches truly guide their own behavior. A sea-shell-like spiral unexpectedly emerged.”

The Oakes describe the shapes created from the matchsticks as a reflection of naturally developing forms. “Forms that occur naturally predicated upon simple rules, or building codes; in this case placing one matchstick next to another and allowing the fact that as the head is a slightly different width than the stick, a form will occur naturally.”

The sculptures possess an immediate cultural recognition being made from commonly used objects, and are given more weight when thousands of them are collected together. But they also hold a seductive energy because the inherent reactive possibilities of the materials.  Matchsticks immediately insinuate fire, and collected matchsticks offer the potential for a chain-reaction, a possibility which adds to the idea of power in great numbers. (via Ignant)

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Gareth Pugh

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While Gareth Pugh’s latest collection for Spring 2010 explores a more “mature” experimentation with diaphonous fabrics and a more subdued tone on tone, I prefer his more outlandish, performative sculptural fashion pieces from past seasons. You can’t beat his futuristic death-metal cube-hesher above, seemingly harbinging the coming of Y2K through Swarovski crystals. Or an entire stole made out of white mink-mice replete with red eyes, fit for some ghastly rodent Ice Queen from a savage Viking town….

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Richard Amsel

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Richard Amsel (1947-1985) was a commercial artist famous for his movie posters, which include Raiders of the Lost Ark, Chinatown, and more. Having been discovered at 22 (edit: 21) when he made a successful proposal for the poster of Hello, Dolly!, Amsel had a fruitful career applying his hyper-realistic painting style to not only movie posters but album covers, book covers, and TV Guide covers. Amsel passed away in 1985 from AIDS.

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Jonathan Vingiano

648_1230313335“Not Valid” is an ongoing experiment concerning the interpretation of invalid html. The work itself seems to be a series of words in a variety of random colors, though each word has been assigned the color value of itself. The browser interprets what color the word should be. Different browsers will interpret “Not Valid” in a different manner.

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