This miniature city is a carefully modeled Tokyo at 1:1,000 scale. The Roppongi Hills skyscraper, dominant in the Tokyo skyline, celebrates its 10th anniversary by creating this model titled Tokyo City Symphony. In addition to being intricately detailed, the model Tokyo is accompanied by a 3D mapping projection set to a corresponding soundtrack. The projection brings the metropolis to life adding an impressive level of reality to the tiny Tokyo. Check out the video to see Tokyo City Symphony in action.
The sculptures of Naoko Ito are elegant in their simplicity. Indeed, these pieces are entirely constructed of only two materials: a tree and jars. A limb of a tree is cut into several segments and each segment, in turn, is placed in a jar. Naoko carefully arranges the jarred pieces to reconstruct the shape of the limb. A subdued commentary on the relationship between humans and nature, the imagery is immediate all the same. Though the shape and size of the tree limb is intact, the jarred branches are nearly gloomy.
If her voluptuous women with their cartoon eyes weren’t enough, Lisa Yushavage captured my soul by saying:
“As an artist you’re supposed to spend your life doing something that’d be an utter waste of time for anyone else. And even so, there’s no proof you’re not wasting your life making some total crap.” (Source)
Using her exceptional skill in oil paints to create hyper-hued landscapes with ripe, almost blowsy, nudes is clearly not making crap. With a career that started in the mid 1990s, her work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at prominent institutions, including the Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City; Royal Academy of Arts, London; and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia.
“I don’t want my pictures to be up to any good. I like the idea that they’re troublemakers. So if I’m told they’re bad for the world, it pleases me. I don’t want to make something that’s an antidote. I want to pose questions. That’s what I do. I suppose I strive to bother people and be loved for it. That’s the dream.” (Source)
These are erotic pictures of women, painted by a woman. Rather than the patriarchal view of sexual woman as object, these women are sexual for themselves. Sometimes kinky, often controversial, these paintings have been compared to soft-core porn. It’s intended as an insult, but it’s actually a reclaiming of power and the ability to depict women in all their forms. “It’s not about being well behaved,” Yaskavage says. “It’s not about behaving for others.”
The essence of female power is not that women must be desexed, it’s that women can decide how they want to be seen—sexy, silly, powerful, maternal, erotic, masculine, intelligent, profound—any combination of these, and much more. Yaskavage’s women are the creatures of her mind, brought to life through her skill with a paintbrush, and behaving in exactly the way they’re meant to in the worlds she’s created.
To the street artist known as R1, the city is a living thing and he creates his ‘interventions’ accordingly. The city and its streets are something we interact with each day. R1’s simple interventions reveal our relationship with our urban homes. Perhaps more importantly, though, it challenges us to interact with the city in an entirely new ways. R1 says of his process:
“I consider the street as an open canvas. I work with urban interventions and collect every day found materials, transforming them and placing them back where they came from, to become a part of the city’s journey. The resulting artwork is tactile, moving within the motion of the cityscape. Like the street, the work finds its meaning once an interaction with the passer-by takes place.”
In the past, artist Mark Khaisman has used his signature style of translucent packing tape, acrylic paint/film panels and lightboxes to create an extension of drawing which focused on decorative objects (such as rugs, chairs and fabric patterns), luxury items (handbags) and portraiture (previously here). For his most recent series, Stills, the Ukranian-born, Philadephia-based Khaisman channels Hollywood’s Classic Era and Film Noir into layers of tape, hand-rolled and variously removed so the light shining through each image creates lines, texture and shading.
Although Khaisman freely sources images from a shared historical film lexicon, his work also takes on a thoroughly modern, almost pixelated feel and reference, particularly in his more colorful works. Says the artist of his signature process,
“The tape is the message. A parody on Marshall McLuhan’s famous quote could explain the superficial motives, which make up the work. Subjects are categorized into different groups: fragmented stills from classic cinema, iconic objects from art history, portraits. The works are exploring the familiar as our shared visual history; made of a familiar material formed into a familiar image, asking the viewer to recognize and complete the work, stimulating both memory and interpretation in the process.”
Barry Stone keeps things simple and precise with geometric abstract collages. Barry also has some video work on his site that’s worth a peak.
Scott Jarvie is an artist and designer whose works are unique in material and in concept. Jarvie runs a multi-disciplinary design consultancy, and most of the projects presented on his website involve furniture design with special attention paid to materials. The piece above, entitled ‘Clutch’, is a chair made from 10,000 drinking straws, a research piece commenting on our disposable culture. Jarvie’s work is fantastic, make sure you check him out.
Once again, the prestigious palace of Versailles has been invaded. After Jeff Koons, Takashi Murakami and Joana Vasconcelos it’s Anish Kapoor’s turn to impress the crowd. And he did.
The artist designed six spectacular installations all meant to impact the history and architecture left by Le Notre, the official Sun King’s gardener.
Anish Kapoor wants to create an opposition: the perfect and rigid site of Versailles versus the idea of chaos and death.
The first two pieces are reflecting the sky and deforming the crowd onto gigantic mirrors. What follows is a little more outstanding: an orifice, like a giant vagina comes out from the ground and faces the palace. A metaphor highly suggesting the cause of the downfall of Marie Antoinette, the King’s guillotined wife. As the viewers randomly walk down onto the next pieces they cannot ignore the phallus shaped organ and the red stones exploding from the grass. Red is Anish Kapoor’s color of choice, it’s the color of the flesh and he is using it repeatedly; he says by using this color he makes the body celestial.
The next two pieces are a dramatic liquid vortex and an informal gelatinous bood-red colored shape. Both installations play with the viewers and their nerves. The whirlpool is intimidating as the sound of the blackened swirl is frightening, the ground shakes under the feet and the strange red organ absorbs the viewer’s bodies as they can penetrate inside.
The provocation goes on with the last piece built inside the Jeu de Paume (at a 5 min walk from the castle). Clearly Anish Kapoor criticizes the French revolution, and condemns the violence of the state against its own citizens. A cannon projects against a white wall red wax and the sexual interpretation which the artist approaches is inevitable: “I am conscious of the controversy this piece could imply. The phallic shape of the cannon and the sexual tension coming from it. Remember that this room was filled with males representing a male dominant State”.