These sculptures by artist James Capper are working hydraulic implements. Their primary colors, spare design, and steel build make the pieces out to be purely utilitarian construction tools. However, these aren’t actual power tools and they don’t necessary build anything. Instead they sit menacingly with feeling like of the premonition of violence. You can almost hear the hiss and huff of air powering the blades. Perhaps the tools are a hint at the violence implicit in production and progress.
Some people are so creative, original, and unique that they have to constantly tell you how creative, original, and unique they are all the time. This entertaining video is about them.
Watch the full video after the jump.
The dark paintings of Martin Wittfooth depict a frightening dystopia that could be our reality if we are not careful. The world he shows us is a grim and desolate one, void of humans, but full of casualties that our species could easily cause. We see a world of animals suffering from our actions and learning to adapt to their new environment for survival. His paintings are a stark reminder of what could happen if we aren’t aware of, and don’t cease the damage we are causing.
Wolves creep around in a burning wasteland, probably looking for food to eat, or some substance somewhere. Bears tip over old water jugs, or some sort of relic from a time past. Tigers are sprawled out over the hood of a rusty car, surrounded by flowers sprouting out of the trunk. The beak of an albatross is stuffed full of trash, the bird unaware that his chosen items are harmful, and not healthy. The sight of these animals that we (should) cherish trying to survive in an undesirable place should bring out the emotions in us that Wittfooth wants.
Everywhere and at all times, we’ve been busy making things in our present for the simple purpose of communicating something, and thus sending messages into our future. What a peculiar habit. We’re the only species inhabiting this planet that routinely behaves this way, and there’s something really beautiful and profound about that. (Source)
His paintings full of the consequences of climate change, over use, excess pollution and unnecessary producing and consumption may seem dramatic, but are actually just a glimpse into a future that could happen, sooner than we think. Wittfooth paints with a sense of urgency; with a need to tell people things could be getting quite bad, quite quickly. He goes on:
I often think about what the psychedelic thinker Terence McKenna called “The Archaic Revival”: a yearning to look into the past to see meaning, connection, the sacred, looking back at us. I need those reminders sometimes, when the current state of human affairs seems dire and in need of a new perspective. (Source)
Flickr user Harvezt imagines what the reverse side of iconic album covers would look like in their illustrative series, The Dark Side of the Covers. Taking famous works by Nirvana, David Bowie, The Beatles and more, the artist not only fills in the other half of well-known characters, but creates entire worlds with a sinister-esque twist.
Harvezt’s additions to these albums make them more well-rounded and conceptually rich. Our new, second viewpoint enhances the story. On Dio’s cover for Dream Evil, we see the original image has a demon making the devil horn with his hands as he peers into a sleeping child’s bedroom. Harvezt’s reverse illustration reveals the the demon being cheered on by a crowd of supporters sporting their own horns.
With all of the thoughtful details that the artist put into these works, they pay homage to these influential covers. Today’s digital downloads don’t always place an emphasis on album artwork, and makes Harvezt’s series a tribute to a time when people purchased physical copies of their music. (Via Metal Injection)
Blinking City is an ongoing project from Instant Hutong that challenges the traditional concepts involved in map making by re-imagining and creating new context around maps of downtown Beijing. Above (and after the jump), are a few images of a stencil piece created in conjunction with Blinking City. Bright colors bleed slightly into one another but maintain their own strength in an orbicular representation of a Beijing neighborhood. The project is awesome and full of good intentions. From the site: “The urban analysis provides the framework for a deeper and street related urban approach involving inhabitants and their lifestyle, in which experience, time, paths, observations, encounters and ideas become eventually as important as the built environment.” The Blinking City webpage, which has details on tons more Blinking City related stuff and other Instant Hutong projects, is really worth a click. (via)
We have featured the work of NY based Matthew Palladino on the blog in the past (here). He has an uncanny ability to reveal subtle dark humor within everyday objects and situations. Palladino has just unveiled a new series of vinyl on canvas and ink on paper paintings that extend his cryptic vision. Figures sway as his claustrophobic compositions warp and pulsate. In other pieces fabric swatches shift and mutate throughout explosive abstractions. In his own words, “The work I make is not like science, it doesn’t begin with a question. It instead tends to end in a question.”