Alice Aycock is mostly known for her important oeuvre of sculptural and installation works, which have spanned decades and include exhibitions at some of the most important cultural institutions around the world. Aycock, however, is also a master draftswoman, creating works on paper that problem-solve her idea of “nonfunctional architecture,” often taking on forms reminiscent of diagrams and blueprints. As Aycock eloquently explains, the medium and its strengths are vastly different in 2 and 3-Dimensions – “Drawings aren’t bound by the physical—the imagination can run freely.”
These sumptuously drawn pieces offer a new realm of possibilities, not simply tied to her sculptural works, but also a visual representation of how the artist’s mind and complex process unfolds. “Viewers are accustomed to seeing Ms. Aycock’s work in its final form, large-scale installations and outdoor sculptures, but her drawings show a mind at work, solving problems and breaking new ground. They also provide further evidence of her ideas and sources, offering clues to their meaning.”
It’s surprising that I’m just discovering this epic 2004 installation by Daniele Buetti. Titled Le Grand Rhume (The Great Cold) this piece features a massive larger than life nose complete with skin blemishes,discoloration, and bad pores crashing through the roof of an old hut and dripping a gooey pile of stalagmites from the nostril. I’m not usually a fan of nasal drips but this just be one of my all time favorite sculptures! More shots of the install after the jump.
In a collection called Inner Child, Hong Kong-based artist Johnson Tsang has sculpted bulbous, porcelain-skinned babies with a surrealist twist. With their enlarged heads, bright eyes, and wrinkled faces, they are painstakingly detailed to capture their emotions. From teary-eyed angst to pouting petulance, they seem to behave like normal infants, but each one is infused with elements of the absurd; one baby laughs manically while sitting on a gilded throne inside a birdcage, and another, dressed in a suit, looks pensive while a fish leaps into his head. Whereas babies are ordinarily known for their heart-melting cuteness, Tsang’s sculptural offspring almost repel us with their bizarre conflations of infancy and adulthood.
Inner Child was displayed last month at K+ Curatorial Space in Singapore. In the press release for the show, Tsang explains the playful motivations behind his sculptures:
“Every adult has an inner child deep inside our soul. It is what keeps us curious, urges us to pursue happiness . . . and above all, gives us courage to embrace our truest selves.” (Source)
Tsang’s work, then, is an observation of the youthful drives that persist within all of us. Because age is often viewed as a linear process—from innocence and emotional expression to maturity and stoic intellect—“childish” traits or behaviors in an adult context may seem odd or even off-putting. Tsang wants us to enjoy his sculptures, however, and to reflect on our own inner children—then maybe we can accept and explore those feelings of unbridled glee, frustration, need, and discontent. After all, these are feelings we will experience again to that “unsophisticated,” childlike degree; as Tsang states humorously, “some day, we will all be old enough to start acting like kids again.” (Source)
A rogue with an eye for salvage – and the ladies – Ray: A Life Underwater is an affectionate portrait of one man’s deep sea diving career, told through his extraordinary collection of marine artefacts. Like a modern-day pirate, 75-year-old Ray Ives has been scouring the seabed for treasure his whole life.The former commercial diver has plundered the deep for over fifty years, bringing to the surface anything that glittered — even gold. In a shipping container near the water, Ray tends his museum of cannon, bottles, bells, swords, portholes and diving gear. Enter Ray’s underwater life after the jump.
Jamie Campbell works with the themes of insecurity, burden, vulnerability and desperation, but does it with self-deprecation and humor and profound honesty, leaving you unsure of whether you want to hit him or hug him. Our favorite images by Jamie are of the ghosts wandering around and the living who are stopped in their tracks and drawn into the light.
The installations of Finnish artist Kaarina Kaikkonen are surreally familiar. Her work seems to take the familiar domestic scene of clothes drying on the line to its wonderfully illogical end. It’s easy to get lost day dreaming about the many people that once filled the second-hand clothing. For Kaikkonen, this exercise and her work are intensely personal – her father died in front of her when she was young and the installation became a way of processing her emotions. Indeed, the clothing acts as a kind of physical manifestation of memories for Kaikkonen – sort of the only vestige of a body that otherwise only exists in the mind.
What is more fascination than the moving image? How about a technique that creates moving images without any film? Artist Elliot Schultz has refined his own version of zoetropes, which is a method of filmless animation. This magic is created by taking a series of images and rotating them in a fast pace. Combined with the use of a strobe light, the sequence appears seamless as if it is the same image moving over and over. Schultz has taken this traditional technique and made it his own. He stitches wiggling worms, dripping water, and old men walking onto fabric in the shape of a circle. These ten-inch discs are the perfect size to be placed onto any turntable, and what is a turntable best for if not to spin! The embroidered images are rotated so fast that it appears just as if they are moving. Since strobe lights often go along with clubs, djs, and turntables, using this unique method almost seems a natural fit for a zoetrope.
Early inventions of the pin screen along with other alternative animation methods have deeply influenced Schultz’s work. He finds inspiration in engineers and animators involved with early cinema such as Claire Parker and Alexandre Alexeieff. Schultz is always experimenting with new mediums and techniques to further develop his interesting series. This incredibly innovative artist is somewhat of an engineer himself, bringing a bit of the history of animation into the contemporary world of electronic music and turntables. (via This is Colossal)