Designer and art director Kevin Weir sources old photographs and animates them into comical, absurd and often haunting gifs. Trawling the online archives of the Library of Congress, Weir uses the instantaneous nature of gifs to rough out short and snappy ideas. The photographs he uses as a base are all black and white, straight-faced, historical snapshots and result in a very Monty Python-esque comedic sketch.
Innocent Grandmas suddenly morph into tens of menacing crows and fly off screen. Bombed-out cities have strange monsters stalking in the background, materializing through wisps of smoke. We witness composed soldiers having their souls depart their uniformed bodies. Some changes are so subtle, we think maybe we are imagining it, adding to the haunting illusion of the whole scene.
Hosted on a tumblr site called The Flux Machine, Weir shows off his knack for humor. From an early age Weir was playing around with Photoshop and adding his own spin to various images. Throughout grad school he had a lot of spare time to fine tune his skills and years later spiced up his hobby of animating birds – coming up with these bizarre ideas. He says he is always drawn to “unknowable places and persons”; to pictures that aren’t loaded with modern day associations. The little “Princess Juliana” child sitting in her rocking chair conjuring up a flame, would feel completely different in a modern day context. The blend of antiquity, deadpan humor and surrealism in Weir’s work is a potently hilarious combination. (via Colossal)
Dr. Lakra is a Mexico-based world renowned tattoo artist whose work has been seen on vintage printed materials and found objects rather than skin, manipulating images of pin-up girls, 1940s Mexican businessmen, luchadores, and Japanese sumo wrestlers.
Monument for transition is a monument for the constant changes that the people of Moengo are subject to. It’s as well a monument for changes in the past as for changes that are happening on this very moment. It’s a monument for small changes, that are hardly noticable, and huge changes with great concequenses. It’s a monument for nature, that rapidly changes all unused objects into jungle by covering it with moss, bushes and tropical flowers. It’s a monument for Toyota, that changed the streetscape drastically by filling up the streets with their cars. And it’s a monument for the Chinese that came to Suriname and took over almost all of the supermarkets. It’s a monument for the enormous amount of schoolchildren that grow up in Moengo and are developping their talents and eventually might use these talents to make even more transitions to the town. But it’s also a monument for the enormous transition that took place after the civil war. A transition that is still having it’s effect on the people. And at last there are the transitions that are still to come. What transition will the current government bring? And what transition will take place after Suralco, the mining company where many Moengonese are employed, leaves the city? –Wouter Klein Velderman
As a generation in Palestine confronts misery, violence, and rejection, the hip hop scene is an outlet to express themselves. Photographer Pierre Mérimée and journalist Jacques Denis capture the young people involved in this scene in their new book, Intifada Rap. In it, we meet MWR’s Mahmoud Shalabi, the girls of Arapyot, and the “veterans” on the scene, including Said Mourad, the voice of the first Intifada.
The book’s press release describes it as:
A dive into the heart of the Palestinian hip hop scene, Intifada Rap bears witness to the incredible strength of the musical movement, from the suburbs of Tel Aviv through to Ramallah. Pierre Mérimée and Jacques Denis’ work shines a glaring light on the reality of Palestinian rap while offering an unprecedented view into the daily lives of a generation confronted with misery, violence and rejection, fighting back against it all to escape their imposed fates. Far from the shocking image of television news and the continual discussion of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the two journalists have documented the day to day lives of youth facing a dark future, for whom hip hope is more than just an escape. Armed only with their words, these men and women on the cusp of their twenties express their need for freedom, hope and equality through lucid texts and heavy beats.
Gypsy and the Cat performing their U.S. live debut at the Hotel Cafe in Hollywood, CA, February 19, 2013.
With the success of Australian bands like Cut Copy and a huge Grammy win for Gotye‘s Somebody That I Used To Know, I expect more and more pop-infused indie bands from Down Under will be making the long trek to try and win over American audiences. The Vaccines‘ recent show in Los Angeles had San Cisco open to a very enthusiastic crowd that sang along and went wild for most of their early set. Gold Fields performed to a sold out crowd last night at the Troubadour and Melbourne pop band, Alpine should be reaching our shores again any day now. When I was invited to the Hotel Cafe last week to see the American debut of Gypsy & The Cat, I had high expectations and wasn’t disappointed.
Xavier Bacash and Lionel Towers, former Melbourne DJs released Gilgamesh, their highly successful debut album back in 2010. It garnered rave reviews in both the Australian and European press, but failed to reach much of a U.S. audience. I’m guessing that’s why they ditched their major label and went with their own on their latest release, The Late Blue on Alsatian Music. It’s currently available on iTunes and definitely worth a listen.
Their U.S. debut at the Hotel Cafe was a perfect start to what should be a very fruitful year for the band. They played songs off both of their albums including their 2010 hit, Jona Vark that had more than a few people singing along. Newer songs like Bloom and Zombie World sounded very strong with the addition of a touring drummer and bass player. “Anyone here have our music?” Xavier asked the large industry heavy crowd to which a few clapped as they began playing Human Desire from their debut, Gilgamesh. The band were more than gracious through their short, but sweet set and finished with their new single, Sorry. Check them out this weekend and next when they perform at the Future Music Festival in Australia.
“My most recent sculptural installations are constructed with discarded electronic materials: computer, telephone and electric cables, thousands of burnt-out bulbs, meters of videotape, old slot machines, celluloid, DVDs, etc. The installations explore the short life expectancy of the technologies we cast off and their relationship to organic mortality.
These installations also seek to reanimate the lifeless. Light animations projected onto the installations appear to free the energy stored in the electronic waste, awakening in it memories of its past.
Through my work I try to bring dead materials back to life, reveal their secrets, revive the collective memory they contain to construct an accurate portrait of a society and an age.” – Daniel Canogar.
Dutch art collective WE MAKE CARPETS create a contemporary interpretation of the centuries-old medium of carpets but with the weaving method, materials, and patterns reflect the 21st century. At a distance, you simply see a decorative carpet. Closer inspection will, however, surprise you as WE MAKE CARPETS uses everyday items to create large carpets.
Products that normally have no value once they have been used, such as plastic forks, plasters, paving tiles, pasta, cotton balls and pegs are arranged in an inventive way to form a graphic pattern. WE MAKE CARPETS are inspired by the color, shape and possibilities of the discarded and cheap materials. The result is not just a decorative carpet, but an object that makes us think about the consumer society that produces these ‘weaving materials’.
Artist Roxy Paine will be having his opening reception tonight at James Cohan Gallery called Dendroid Drawings and Maquettes, on view May 1 through May 30, 2009. The exhibition includes a scale model of Maelstrom as well as drawing studies from the artist’s well-known series of stainless steel Dendroid sculptures. This show runs concurrent to Roxy Paine on the Roof: Maelstrom, a site-specific installation at The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Iris and B. Gerald Cantor Roof Garden on view from April 28 through October 25, 2009