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Marita Contreras’ Victims

Marita contreras photography (1)Marita Contreras’ photographs depict images of victimization, and images that indicate an abuse of power and status in relationships that are inherently unbalanced. The work incorporates religious and cultural images that are characteristic of Peruvian society and also contains spanish phrases and allusions to magical realism.

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Jamal Penjweny Photographs Of Iraqi People And Their Failed Sports Stardom Dreams

 

Jamal Penjweny, an Iraqi Kurdish photographer, artist and filmmaker, creates I Wish– a simple yet poignant series of photos that feature people who have dreams of sport stardom but lack the ability and/or possibilities to make their dreams come true.

 As children we all have dreams of becoming famous, we see Maradona play soccer or a Bruce Lee film and think that we will be stars like them when we grow up. But life gives us another way, we become something else, and we do not get a chance to live these dreams.

For I Wish, Penjweny photographs his subjects inside their homes or at their jobs and asks them to hold a picture of their sport stardom dream. Some hold pictures of successful swimmers, tennis and soccer players ; others hold pictures of Bruce Lee, while some embrace photos of their favorite car driver. The idea, although a bit pessimistic at first glance, is to create visual juxtapositions between their dreams and their current simple but confortable reality. While the photographs are unassuming and understated, we can’t help but fall under spells of nostalgia and sentimentality as these images are a reminder that we are all  stuck in our mundane lives while our dreams are left in the back burner. Here, Penjweny gives dreams a chance, he tries to expose them, and, in a sense, give them life.

The man in the mountains wanted to become a champion swimmer but he was born in a place with no swimming pools, the man with the Bruce Lee photo took karate lessons and then became a Mullah, the man with the Ferrari photo always wanted to be a racecar driver- now he has a donkey and sells gasoline.  I made this project to give one moment when dreams can become reality, so each person can act out their dream even if they cannot fulfill it in real life.

No matter where you are or how old you are, if you are disabled, or poor- restrictions are by no means important when one can think big, and get excited by it. So what if dreams don’t come to fruition, if you are driven by the power of limitless thought and possibility, then you are bound to get someplace worth your stay.

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Erin Flannery’s Lovely Ladies

Fashion illustration meets inky goodness in Erin Flannery’s large scale paintings. She notably works with stencils and dewy ink, pen and paint to create these ethereal pieces. Each of her series are full of equally strong, striking portraits of mysteriously lovely ladies. She’s preparing for her 2nd solo show at Anthea Polson Art which is open July 2-16 2011 ( Shops 18-20 Mariners Cove Seaworld Drive Main Beach QLD 4217 )

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Christopher Rimmer’s Haunting Photographs Of Towns Consumed By Sand

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Christopher Rimmer’s haunting photography series Sign of Life chronicles two towns that are slowly being buried by sand. The desolate and surreal works were shot in the diamond mining towns of Elizabeth Bay and Kolmanskop in South Western Namibia. Here, we see the hospital, ballroom, power station, theater, casino, and more slowly filling up of sand. The amount of it makes these places indistinguishable from one another as well as uninhabitable as the spaces are totally devoured.

The juxtaposition of the once-ornate interiors and the giant drifts of sand is fascinating. We see how the material, which is the same thing that’s used to build children’s sandcastles, is really destructive,  as it takes doors off its hinges and works of filing rooms to the brim.

With Sign of Life, Rimmer explores the ultimate futility of human endeavor. The now ghost towns depicted in the work were extremely wealthy due to diamond mining and were once a symbol of growth and prosperity. After the diamonds ran out, the last resident moved away in 1951 and left the town to the elements. Now, they are no match for nature as it destroys the structures residents worked so hard to build. (Via Yellowtrace)

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Ai Weiwei

"Forever Bicycles"

Beijing-based activist-critic-curator-artist Ai Weiwei has survived internal bleeding just last year from police brutality for uncovering scandals circling the Sichuan earthquake student casualties (but really, China isn’t that scary, until you try to do something they don’t like), and unveiled his new installation at the Tate Modern. Entitled “Sunflower Seeds,” the piece is a corner to corner spread of porcelain sunflower seeds all individually hand-fired hand-painted, and all one of a kind. View the rest of the post to see the installation along with other works by Ai Weiwei.

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Marco Cuevas

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Documentary Watch: Karakuri

 

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!

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Daniel Eatock’s Common Object Sculptures

By stacking two otherwise banal objects and calling it art, Daniel Eatock‘s sculptures both make us laugh as well as re-view the objects around us as first and foremost formal objects and secondly as things we can use to, say, move a pile of dirt around. Try it! Look at all those little smooth squares your fingers are pushing. Look around you!

In his words ” […] I propose systems, templates, invitations and opportunities for collaboration, creating social networks where contributers shape the outcome and participate in the building of works. I embrace contradictions, and dilemmas. I like gray areas, oxymorons and the feeling of falling backwards. My favorite colour is the purple found in a soap bubble. I prefer to swap and exchange things rather than use money. I seek alignments, paradoxes, chance circumstance, loops, impossibilities and wit encountered in everyday life. I often change my mind, go full circle, and arrive at the beginning.” – Daniel Eatock

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