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Toni Spyra’s Disguised Weapons

Toni Spyra lives and works in Vienna, Austria. He creates alarming sculptures made out of mundane objects. From a canister of pepper spray with a perfume applicator attached, to a clothes hanger with a saw blade; these threatening works immediately announce their inherent danger and allow the viewer to reflect on safety and self protection in our culture.

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Artist Interview: Michael DeForge Is King Trash

The world of child mafias, gooey relatable beasts, funky leathery space dudes, soft bodies, diseased bodies, and crusty bodies, is the world of DeForge. Toronto-based Michael DeForge is running amuck in the independent comic’s scene. He is consistently putting out top-notch work executed in his very distinct style, a style that allows for plenty of room for experimentation while still being immediately recognizable as the “DeForge touch”. At age 24, with just a few years solidly devoted to comics, it’s amazing to imagine what he will achieve in his lifetime. On top of that, he does prop and effects for the wonderful Cartoon Network series Adventure Time. He has the drive. He has the look. He has it all. He is King Trash.

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Philip Seymour Hoffman’s Final Portrait Is One Of A Breathtaking Series Of Celebrity Photographs

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Since his tragic death, Philip Seymour Hoffman’s image has fluttered on and off of our computer screens more times than we can count. When we lose celebrities who’ve influenced us, we might search for solace in a single work of art that captures an intimate expression of some larger cultural current; we elevate the photographic likeness of stars to the status of a late relative, bookmarked online rather than carried in a wallet.

A few short weeks ago, Hoffman and fellow actors sat for the photographer Victoria Will at the Sundance film festival, and her photographs serve as a testament to the worshipful and nurturing ways in which we consider celebrity. The series is unusual for Will’s choice to use tintype, a photographic process popular in the mid-1800s. As the artist positions her sitters behind a reverent lens, the prolific subjects themselves becomes elevated by the sheer amount of work needed to produce their image. In this way, the work harkens back to an era when people treasured the photograph of a loved one and maybe only sat for one shot throughout a lifetime.

Will refers to the process as “finicky” and “honest;” the images recall the work of Moyra Davey, a photographer who wrote on the power of accidents in the medium. With the remarkably delicate crinkling of emulsion and subtle and unintentional chemical happenings, each subject becomes marked and qualified by the artist’s accidental movements and sporadic perceptions. With each astounding frame, our idols beg the question, “Will this be the image by which you remember me?” (via 22 Words and Esquire)

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Awesome Video Of The Day: TV On The Radio- Will Do

Love this sci-fi, trippy, lovey dovey, video for TV On The Radio’s Will Do single. Directed by Dugan O’Neal.

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Altered Realities Bad for Human Health?

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I came across an article on Reuters the other day detailing the French government’s proposal of a law that would require all digitally modified images  to come with a warning stamp/disclaimer stating: “Photograph retouched to modify the physical appearance of a person.” Valerie Boyer, French parliamentarian, alongside some 50 other politicians, proposed the law to fight what they see as a warped image of women’s bodies in the media & popular culture. Boyer stated, “These images can make people believe in a reality that often does not exist.” They believe that these “false realities” could lead to various kinds of psychological disorders, most prominently eating disorders within young women.

What’s interesting is that this law would apply not only to the glossy spreads of fashion mags, but all press photographs, political campaigns, images on packaging, advertising, even art photographs. More before/after digital photoshopping after the jump. I wonder in the Renaissance if people were upset that fair duchesses and dukes were painted with a smokey-sfumato to hide their big noses….at any rate, this holds some strange implications as far as how we view photography as some sort of implement of “truth”– seems to me gone are the days the photograph will be considered as any sort of factual record…

What do you guys think? Regulating altered realities good, or detrimental to creative expression….? (Also, is it me or is there something strangely visually satisfying about these photos…)

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Maximo Riera Bold Chairs And Couches Made In The Shape Of Wild Animals

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Bringing nature and humankind together is the purpose of artist Maximo Riera. The Spanish artist is making chairs from wild animals such as elephants, octopus, rhinos, hippos and whales. An homage to the extraordinary creatures we too often take for granted.

It takes the artist approximately 11 weeks to manufacture one piece. With an average of 480 hours spent on the entire process. The process is complex. First, the 3D modeling and then the production achieved with the help of about 30 engineers grouped from five different companies. The animal-shaped chairs are made out of high dense polyurethane and held by a metallic frame. One piece weighs 350lbs.

Maximo Riera is highlighting through the making of these chairs the importance of nature. It’s a subtle metaphor for anyone who wants to hear it, that animals are a innocent presence and that it is human kind’s role to find tame. Like children looking at toys, we are delighted by the idea of perhaps owning one these chairs, or at least try them out.
‘this collection gives us an option of admiring what nature is capable of; this is the main reason why from the beginning I wanted to be faithful to the animal’s physique. this series is an homage to these animals and the whole animal kingdom which inhabits our planet, as an attempt to reflect and capture the beauty of nature in each living thing.’
What about the real ones? The question underlined here is, how can we come closer to nature and respect and live with it? (via Design Boom)

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Two Rabbits

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My good buddies at Two Rabbits Studios have recently updated their site and online store.  If you haven’t heard of these fellas, you should put your ears to the ground more often. Though they may be named after a small gentle animal, they are a stampeding herd of buffalos who will trample you with their design and printing skills.  They’ve done concert posters for all of your favorite musicians and probably your mother’s favorites as well. (P.S. They silk screened one of the inserts in Book 2).

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Artist Carves Wax Crayons Into Pop-Culture Icons

Hoang Tran - Carved Wax Crayons

Hoang Tran - Carved Wax Crayons

Hoang Tran - Carved Wax Crayons

Artist Hoang Tran creates your favorite pop-culture characters, from The Simpson’s to the Ninja Turtles, all out of wax…but not just any wax. Tran carves each character from a jumbo-sized crayon! That’s right, each intricately and meticulously detailed character is carved from your everyday Crayola crayon…the same crayons that you used to make your own “masterpiece” with at age three. Each pop-culture icon is carved from the color in which it dominantly possesses, but also has hints of other colors that make up the finishing touches of the character. To do this, Tran melts different colored waxes, or crayons, and then applies the melted pigment onto the finest details of his creations. The amazing detail speaks wonders about the talent and patience the artist must have in order to master such a painstaking craft.

What is so wonderful about this artist’s crayon creatures is that only half of the wax is carved. The other side of the crayon is left intact, Crayola wrapper and all! Tran creates all sorts of characters such as Batman, Gizmo, Spongebob and Cookie Monster. He even carves out real life people such as Conan O’Brian. This series, appropriately titled Wax Nostalgic, is chalk full of infamous characters. It is a nostalgic dream. If you are a Star Wars fan, Tran has transformed a crayon into every character from this classic film from Hans Solo to Princess Leia. This impressive little treasures can be found on Hoang Tran’s website, or his Etsy site, where you can have get crayon characters for yourself. (via Inkult Magazine)

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