These incredibly realistic birds are not alive – surprisingly they’re only paper models. In fact, artist Johan Scherft out of only paper, glue, and paint. He models each bird’s unique shape on his computer than constructs and paints the rest by hand. While the fold-and-glue-tabs model provides each bird with their distinctive body shape, the realism is in Scherft’s careful painting. He says of the painting, “For this part, I take the most time. With very fine brushes, I try to achieve the most realistic effect in color and detail. I use watercolors or gouache paint. It’s always an exciting moment once the template has been painted to assemble the bird and see what the result is.” [via]
Origami is both impressive in its folded construction as well as its ability to signify the need for change by urging us to look beyond the paper forms. Animals are no doubt the most popular subject, and Japanese artist Takayuki Hori has a twist on the conventional foldings. He crafts these animals to appear as victims of Japan’s urban pollution, and the pieces expose the sad truths of what happens to these creatures. Hori showcases garbage in their insides using X-ray-like detail. If you look closely, you can see tiny bottles and other trash within the stomachs and ribcages.
These works appear in Hori’s exhibition Oritsunagumono (which means “things folded and connected”) which critiques the polluted coastal waterways and the effects they have on its inhabitants. Images are printed onto translucent sheets of paper and later folded into their origami shapes. The result are a ghostly tribute and haunting reminder of our impact on the environment. (Via Fast Co. Design)
There certainly is a “wow” factor when you come across the work of Chris Gilmour. Not only are his representational sculptures flawless in scale and form but they are made out of cheap cardboard that you would usually find in dumpsters. Gilmour takes this everyday material and gives it a new life creating gorgeously sculpted objects that transcend the material that they are made with bewilder our senses. Read a short interview with the artist after the jump.
Swiss artist Fabian Bürgy is a master of deception and trickery. His practice combines installation, sculpture and digital imagery. By subtly and playfully manipulating mundane objects and the space they are in, he creates beautifully surreal situations. Bürgy is inspired by the most mundane of things – from chairs and suicide belts to tire marks, holes, ladders, nails and even dog tails, and he changes the way in which they are used. He has the power to fool our eyes and make us look twice at what we are seeing.
In Bürgy’s hands, an empty gallery space will now have a black hole disappearing through the floor. He will place some black dust in the corner of a room in such a clever way it will look like the wall is bending strangely or lifting up from the corner. Or he will boldly put a ‘crack’ in the floor like an earthquake had ruined the expensive gallery floor the day before and no one noticed. His work is understated, minimalistic, poetic and striking. He transforms, misplaces, and destroys the things we see around us everyday.
A personal favorite work of his has to be ‘A lonely and misplaced black cloud floating in space‘. It’s a beautiful combination of elegance, melancholy and stillness. There is a tension in his work, or a feeling of being unsettled, but the feeling is not so uncomfortable it can’t be enjoyed. Bürgy is able to straddle many contradictions – stillness and movement; familiarity and strangeness; function and non function; real and virtual. He is a clever sculptor who fully understands the words ‘concept’ and ‘art’.
I wanted to issue an apology for committing the ultimate blogging sin: mixing up two artists’ works (!!). So here is my attempt to correct my error.. the HARMLAND/CHARMGLAND post I made was actually composed of two Flickr accounts’ works: Hardland/Heartland and Portrait Painters. This post is about HL/HL, and the next will be Portrait Painters. Damn, the internet is a tricky business.
This description is taken straight from the horse’s mouth:
“Hardland/Heartland is an amorphous cluster of artists working to create an ongoing visual investigation of our own personal histories, cultural interactions and possible futures. Using intuition and collaboration, we have embraced multiple mediums and methods that allow us to present our findings, not as definite statements, but instead as a more pragmatic communication of ideas that can be built upon and developed over time. These results are pieced together to form a lexicon of personal symbolism that serves as an authentic record of our creative endeavors and interaction.”
Kwon Kyungyup’s figurative paintings reveal an unassailable world of sensuality, duality and emotional imprisonment. She approaches her figurative paintings in a way in which her subjects are depicted almost as inhuman and immaculate beings, as if the body is merely a storage for deep memories of pain, loss, and trauma. Her paintings represent wounded souls sheltering within bandaged boys and girls. The bandage-covered faces are symbolic of a wound the body remembers: a spiritual, ontological wound that purifies or sublimates emotion. In Kwon’s work tears are positive equipment for delivering emotions. The eyes of the figures are focused on the object that brought the sense of loss. Pearls similarly stand in as tears and as a metaphor for the meaning of emotional purification, curing, and sublimation. These works are exquisite and intimate portraits of human frailty and resilience.
There is a lot of public art on view in Nantes, France right now. Amazing installation pieces have sprouted all over the city, an industrial port off the Loire river near the Atlantic coast, as part of a couple large exhibitions happening all at once. One of these exhibits (and possibly the best of all currently on view), is ESTUAIRE, a trail of installation pieces in and along the Loire near Nantes and Saint Nazaire that celebrates and plays off of river habitats. This is the third year the show has been organized (2007 and 2009, previously). A few of the sculptures include beached boats, partially submersed homes, bears in trees, and monstrous sea snake skeletons, providing for a really strong, visually appealing commentary on the state of our natural environments. Check out more of ESTUAIRE 2012 after the jump.