Mixing an admiration for John Baldessari with her own childhood memories of cutting/altering magazines with her mother, Flore Kunst creates captivating collages from vintage postcards and magazines, while sprinkling a few contemporary clippings throughout. A graduate of Emile Cohl for design, Kunst’s eye for intriguing detail and clean lines is evident; however, it’s her creative visual juxtapositions that truly capture our attention most, allowing us to meditate on the female form and its signifiers from era to era– how it all clashes and confuses even the most contemporary culture and its psyche.
Inspired by a nightmare, “Analysis Creature” is Wonman Kim (Animabase)’s series full of weird and strange skeletal and mechanic creatures. Each piece is like an x-ray of a unique creature from her brain. He is currently working as a graphic designer, illustrator, and conceptual artist in Seoul, South Korea.
Japan has always been on the forefront of cutting edge robotics. Its roots can be traced back 200-300 years during the Edo period when skilled craftsmen created automata (self-operating machines). Using nothing more than pulleys and weights they were able to make the Karakuri (Japanese automata) perform amazing tasks. Japans modern day robots can be traced back to the Karakuri. Today Hideki Higashino is one of the few remaining craftsmen who is determined to keep the history and tradition of Japanese Karakuri alive. Watch the full documentary after the jump!
If you’re in LA make sure to swing by POVevolving Gallery in Chinatown and check out the latest exhibit by Marco Zamora featuring beautifully rendered paintings and a great video installation. The show is up through july 7th.
Adam W. Hill is a photographer whose work centers on the creation of alternative portraiture. This particular series, titled Dollface, explores the effect of doll-like makeup on people of various ages; with heavily rouged cheeks, thick eyebrows, and contoured lips, his subjects are a magnetic (and eerie) combination of adulthood and infancy. Hill has done an excellent job highlighting the brightness and color of their eyes, giving life and vibrancy to an artificial aesthetic. It is fascinating, too, how the models have chosen to express their doll-identities; some look passive and innocent, others playful and mischievous, the rest serious or melancholic.
Peruse Adam’s website, and you’ll see that all of his series explore portraiture in an unconventional way; his subjects are youthful, playful, and sometimes a bit absurd. In his portfolio’s “About Me,” he expresses his views on the historical significance of the portrait, stating how it has traditionally been used “for people of privilege and power, and as a means of affirming the authority of certain individuals” (Source). While he resists this sort of elitist representation, he is also fascinated by the aesthetics of formal portraiture; as a result, his work displays alternative subjects in a quasi-traditional way by infusing them with an appearance of “power and privilege, […] decadence and despair” (Source).
Dollface is an amusing and fascinating example of Adam’s manipulation of photographic tradition. By posing his models in conventional ways, but dressing them with hyperbolic, doll-like makeup, he “plays” with and subverts the elitism behind formal portraiture, thereby producing a commentary on the artificiality of the genre. Check out Adam’s website for more examples of his work.
Japanese artist Kohei Nawa created an amazing foam installation that took over the entire room of a gallery in Japan. The perfect finishing touch, tiny specks of light like a night’s sky, added a dash of poetry to the ambiance.
Titled Foam, Nawa experimented with various combinations of glycerin, detergent, and water until he had realized the ideal, perfect, pliable foam, one that would not be affected by gravity or lose shape. The installation, which was being altered continuously by eight different pumps in the room, had an eternally shifting presence which made the clouds even more realistic. Looking at it scientifically, he said:
“Small cells bubble up ceaselessly with the slight oscillations of a liquid. The cells gather together, totally covering the liquid as they spontaneously form a foam, an organically structured conglomeration of cells. The risen volumes of foam link together and reach saturation, but continue to swell, occasionally losing vitality and spreading out over the ground.” (Excerpt from Source)
Carolina Fontoura Alzaga is a multidisciplinary artist out of Los Angeles with a penchant for re-purposing castoff materials and exploring sociopolitical themes. She’s currently selling some chandeliers made from used bicycle chains at her Etsy page. You don’t even have to be into cycling to like these. The heavy chains almost give off a medieval vibe and they look like they give off some really nice, warm light. Looks like they’re being offered at some pretty affordable prices as well. (via)
The world’s strongest man or woman; you may not even be close to it, but these people might be. Brooklyn based photographer Brian Finke captures an inside look into the pageants of incredibly chiseled muscle men and women of bodybuilding competitions. He not only displays the showmanship of this kind of competition, with the small bikinis and bathing suits, but also the competitors getting ready for their big moment in the spotlight. Men and women that seem to be almost bursting out of their skin with muscle parade themselves proudly for the cameras and judges in this captivating series.
Brian Finke’s photography portrays scenes of interesting happenings of everyday life. His documentary style mixed with a little bit of humor makes his work irresistible. This series of his, titled Most Muscular, can be seen on view at the School of Visual Arts Chelsea Gallery in New York City from August 22nd until September 19th. The exhibit not only features unusual characters with almost unbelievable muscle tone, but also another series of Brian Finke’s titled 2-4-6-8. This slightly offbeat series documents cheerleaders doing their routines, with a slight flavor of humor added in as well. Finke’s photography exhibits vivid colors and dramatic compositions, adding a bit of narrative to his work. Check out more of this artist’s alluring documentary style photography on his Instagram @BrianFinke.