Italian artist Francesca Pasquali uses a common household item as a point of departure: straws. Perhaps because we typically use and see straws one at a time, Pasquali’s simple work can be especially intriguing to look at. She cuts the straws to varying lengths and arranges them one by one into a large mass. The fields of straws almost appear to be organic, similar to coral or bacterial growths. However, the reality that the sculptures are decidedly inorganic and plastic never entirely escapes the viewers attention. Pasquali achieves an interesting play between natural formations and industrial materials.
Romanian artist Felix Deac creates hyper-realistic sculptures…sort of. His pieces covered in human-like skin are replete with moles, veins, blemishes, and hair. However, their form is anything but familiar. His sculptures are intentionally amorphic and anthropomorphic at the same time. In a way Deac encourages the viewer to contemplate the irrational situation in which a creature like this would be a possibility and how it came into existence.
Junk artist Rubbish Fairy (Sophie Soni) is constantly hoarding, collecting, cutting, gluing and arranging, yeap you guessed it, rubbish. She manages to take discarded plastic bits and pieces and turns them into wearable, kitschy, technicolor rainbow explosions. Soni fashions together chunky head pieces, masks, breastplates, dresses for different performers, musicians, artists, and fashion shoots. Basically anything that can adorn the body, she has it covered. Her pieces include stunningly ornate chandelier head dresses, or Victorian-style flouncy dresses littered with cheap and cheerful gems, or balaclava masks covered with red silicon lips, pig noses and multiple strings of beads. She has even chopped up soft toys in the past and used their various limbs and heads as different bits of jewelry.
Ms Fairy piles everything on all at once and manages to bask in the chaos she creates. As a comment on consumer culture, vanity, the fashion industry, and the economy of desire, her work is reminiscent of installation artist Mike Kelley. Both manage to exist simultaneously within and outside of pop culture. They heavily reference, and use the resources from the world around them, yet manage to place themselves in an order separate from it.
Rubbish Fairy’s world is a surreal, captivating, all encompassing one – where, if you’ve been in it for long enough, you will start to see the trash around you quite differently. See more of her out-of-this-world creations after the jump.
Israeli artist Zemer Peled creates sculptures using countless ceramic shards. Each individual element is a small part of a greater whole, and their sharp and pointed edges form a single beautiful form that’s inspired by flowers or sea creatures. Through careful arrangement, these forms bloom and breath like the real thing.
Peled uses blue cobalt found in designs and landscapes from traditional Japanese pottery as her raw materials. Subtle lines and patterns create the textures for flower petals and other attributes. To make this possible, the artist uses a slab roller to build sheets of clay that are fired and then broken with a hammer. What’s incredible is not only the meticulous nature of assembling and placing each piece, but its the uniformity that they all have. Although Peled’s work is comprised of countless parts, each of them is the same. (Via Colossal)
Really cool cityscape sculptures created from recycled computer parts by Italian artist Franco Recchia. The cold mechanics of the dead computer hardware bring a strange quality to the works. And the claustrophobic elements of urban life are nicely captured in how compact each piece is. The sculptures give off a haulted vibe- it’s as if someone pulled the plug out of life itself and all that’s left is a series of plastic, green shells. See more from the series after the jump. (via)
Phillip Toledano’sPhonesex project reveals not just the identity of operators who answer the phone when you call a 1-900 number, but their desires, fears, motivations, and most memorable calls.
A contract of mutual self-delusion exists between the caller and phone sex operator. The caller imagines he is speaking to his most secret fantasy-and the operator willingly plays the part.
A phone sex operator must be able understand the caller’s wants. But more importantly, they must be able to decrypt the unspoken desires. Those things that are too preposterous, too scandalous, or humiliating to articulate.
From a few mumbled words, a phone sex operator must weave and finely detailed fantasy encounter. It requires a vivid imagination, acting ability, and above all, a deep understanding of the human appetite. What do we crave? What words have the maximum yield? What tone will most effectively reach into a man’s trousers?
Austrian photographer and diver Andreas Franke has created a hauntingly beautiful series of images called “The Sinking World” in which he layers studio photographs over underwater ship wrecks. In 2009, the USS Vandenberg was lowered into the ocean off the coast of Florida to serve as an artificial reef. When Franke encountered the ship while diving, he was inspired by the vessel’s haunting emptiness. For the Vandenberg project, Franke superimposes photographs of recognizable, everyday scenes; the studio figures appear ghostly, as if they are re-enacting scenes that previously took place in a lively atmosphere. The empty ship becomes a site that reveals snapshots of a lost, surreal world, discovering the humanity that lurks among the ships hallways, passages, and decks. Franke creates an unexpected dream world where a viewer is pulled into a strange, new, and fantastical place.
This sunken ship not only provides the setting for Franke’s superimpositions, but also serves as a gallery where divers can swim up to Franke’s work, viewing his photographs in the very place that inspired his images. From the project’s website,
“The pictures engender extreme polarities: the soft, secretive underwater emptiness of sleeping shipwrecks is paired with real, authentic sceneries full of liveliness and vigor, thus creating a new world, equally bizarre and irresistibly entangling…
These spectacular underwater galleries make divers fall under their spell and display the work of the ocean itself. During the weeks and months under water the ocean bequeaths impressive, peerless traces to the pictures. It adorns them with a certain, peculiar patina, endowing them with the countenance of bizarre evanescence and transfiguring them into rare beauties.”
Franke has also created two other series of shipwreck images using period piece studio photography, as opposed to the everyday activities of the Vandenberg project. For the SS Stavronikita shipwreck, Franke superimposes photographs of people dressed in clothing and participating in activities evocative of Rococo. For the USS Mohawk, a WWII shipwreck, Franke imagines what life on the ship might look like, and creates a series of images in which the sailors have returned to haunt the ship. (via slow art day)
Brussels-based Hélène Jeudy consistently pumps out magical graphite drawings that never cease to dazzle the eyes with the banal and the demonic. From the kitchen to the pits of hell you will go, with your eyes being blasted by her beautiful tonnage. She recently, had a book released by POGO Books. Support. This. Lovely. Dream.