The Slap, a totally fresh video by filmmaker Max Landis, is a clever response to the famous First Kiss video that went viral three months ago and has been making all of us go awwww up until now. Landis’ video features 40 randomly paired people in a fairly uncomfortable situation – the goal for them was to slap each other in the face. Even if it’s the first time they had met.
According to the author, none of the participants were pressured to do so and all of them were “hit as hard as THEY asked to be hit”. The beauty of this project lies in the contrast between a somewhat violent action of hitting other person and the intimate feeling the participants develop towards each other.
Though Landis really was aiming to mock the famous First Kiss video (which is obvious from the black and white color palette and similar upbeat music), he did go beyond just that. His explanation video called Point Of Impact explains the reasons for him to make “The Slap” in the first place.
“What is violence? It’s really just a label, isn’t it, if you let your mind go to a dark place. I decided to define violence as “non-consensual physical interference;” <…> What is trust? Do you trust someone not to hurt you? Are you even thinking about it? Do you care if they hurt you if you trust them? <…> The theory was: A slap, robbed of its violating context, is more intimate than a kiss. My theory, as it turned out, was right.”
Btw, did you notice the cherry on top? At 1:48, there’s Haley Joel Osment (yup, the kid from The Sixth Sense) being slapped straight into his lush beard.
Berlin-based artist Sebastian Bieniek‘s double-faced girl portraits are a little humorous, but they also provoke a more menacing or unsettling feeling. With an eye pencil and lipstick, Bieniek draws a face onto each side of the model’s face, using one real eye for each face. After her hair has been strategically placed around her face, Bieniek photographs this subject in the context of daily routines, thoughtfully using objects that appear in everyday environments. For this series as well as his other work, Bieniek enjoys creating a narrative that contains absurd elements and surprises viewers. Junk Culture notes, “Bieniek first came up with the idea one morning while playing in the bathroom with his son. He explains, ‘Wet hair covered one of his eyes, soap covered his ear, he looked in the mirror and said, dad look my face moved!’” This creates a manufactured or mannequin like image, with a hint of humanity evoked with one eye.
Bieniek enjoys engaging and provoking responses from his viewers, something his Facebook page of 54,000 fans attests to. He notes, “Art will be consumed differently, the market is constantly changing. Nearly every day, I make an artwork and post it on Facebook. You no longer have to see art in a gallery or see the original.” (via design boom)
Ana de Orbegoso‘s series of photographes, titled The Invisible Wall, is a way of visually depicting personal prejudices. The photographs are a series of portraits each obscured by a pair of hands, as if the subject were hiding their face. Underneath the hands, though, a face subtly appears. Obviously, the series’ title refers to a figurative wall, a social one. Of these ‘walls’ she says:
“Behind our individual walls we each keep hidden our prejudices, our preconceptions, our highest aspirations. Our individual walls serve to protect us by enabling us to always hold something back, an edge between what is hidden and what is revealed.”
The boombastic Superoboturbo illustrations remind me of how excited I used to be when I saw monkeys on television. I used to be obsessed with those little fuzzy guys, and I’m beginning to swoon for this man’s work the same way. His controlled pallette and friendly line-weight make for a rambunctious duo that make it hard to pull my eyes away.
Also, he recently broke his leg so maybe send him a nice note or a little work to help cheer him up/pay the medical bills at: [email protected]
Kaeleen Wescoat-O’Neill has recently been working on series based on mugshots from her hometown in Florida. She recently flew out of Art Center with a Bachelor of Fine Art. Her work has a beautiful air, like Elizabeth Peyton or Alex Katz, but offers something uniquely her own.