Critical Objects is a personal initiative of Berlin-based graphic design firm, HelloMe. The project began as a series of explorations that thrive on not having any particular goal. The project consists of a series of objects that transcend a blurry line between artistic sculpture and functional furniture. The beauty of the project is that it remains unknown to the user if these things should really every be used, touched, sat on, or turned on… We have a small collection featured here, so be sure to check out the full series at Critical Objects.
Artist Daniel Palacios‘ sculpture nearly seems alive. A length of rope is attached at to a machine at each end and spun. The spinning rope creates waves against a black backdrop, which are also audible as the rope cuts through the air. Visitors entering the gallery and their movement then influence the rope’s wave. The more a visitor moves in front of the installation, the more chaotic the wave pattern. It’s interesting to note a visitors surprise or sudden discomfort upon realizing their influence on the wave. The sculpture not only reveals a viewers impact on sonic surroundings, but also concretely presents also seems to eerily acknowledge each viewers existence in space and movement.
People are on the move in the installations of Clinton De Menezes. Large crowds of people seem to be trudging through a white field – a snowy plain or salt flat. The exodus, though, plays out on the side of a wall. The South African artist’s model migrations exhibit patience and attention to detail. Each figure is hand painted before being placed and plastered to the wall. De Menezes’ installations illustrate the personal and collective drama of human migration. His work is clearly influence by the ever shifting and complex social landscape of the land of his birth.
The installations of Michel Blazy grow, flow, and froth. Like much of his work, Blazy’s latest installation, titled Bouquet Final, makes use of white foam. Inside a French Medieval church, the foam tumbles from high scaffolding to the floor. The pliable, moving, and ever changing foam contrasts with the sense of permanence in the centuries old cathedral. Blazy alludes to a change and mortality by using materials such as foam, an unstable medium in perpetual transformation. The foamy flow could also reference the earth and neglect for its environment. The installation resembles uncontrollable detergent suds – a product that is at once used to clean our homes and also a poisonous pollutant to the earth and its waters.
Artist Patrick Jacobs creates highly intricate dioramas. His dioramas, once created, are installed inside the gallery wall and fitted with a large lens. Gallery visitors can spy on each of the miniature scenes through these lenses. Jacobs’ dioramas are often of idealized landscapes or peaceful indoor scenes carefully detailed to appear as entirely separate worlds. Hidden lighting glows as if entirely natural while the foreground seamlessly blends with a background and further to the horizon.
Ricardo Bojorquez is an artist and graphic designer in Los Angeles. His latest artwork, Feedback Occurrences, uses standard materials, common techniques and everyday electronics to create an inventory of interactions. As a graphic designer, Ricardo’s practice is messy and defiant of the typical grid-like structures and legibility we are all taught to praise in design school, while still feeling so deliberate and well communicated. Ricardo received his MFA in Media Design from the Grad Media Design program at the Art Center College of Design in 2012. In 2011, Ricardo was invited to the Werkplaats Typografie / ISIA workshop in Urbino, Italy, where he studied under the mentorship of Armand Mevis, Maureen Mooren, Leonardo Sonnoli and Karel Martens. Ricardo is a partner at The Rare Studio, a studio for design and research that works within graphic design, interaction, and architecture. All of this work payed off as just last week he was honored with the prestigious recognition of being named a “Young Gun” by the Art Directors Club.
Sakir Gokcebag is a Turkish artist who creates elegant installations from the most ordinary objects. Coat hangers, toilet paper, wicker baskets, levels, and jewelry are a few of the many objects he plays with to make his charming studies of form and materials. They’re reminiscent of how in the menial jobs we all have at one point or another, we keep ourselves sane by making towers, sculptures, and patterns out of the objects around us, and in doing so re-discover their formal elements–this chocolate bar is a rectangle, that coat hanger is a bow, these salt shakers are kind of like Kokeshi dolls, etc. Gokcebag takes this impulse and runs with it, turning it into some great visual poetry. (via)
Over the weekend I had the pleasure of dropping by my neighborhood museum, the Pasadena Museum of California Art (PMCA), to check out new work by Guillermo Bert. The digital age has managed to find its way into places the mechanical age was never quite able to get to. In the exhibition’s accompanying essay, Peter Frank claims that this phenomenon has resulted in the poor becoming “confident operators” of this advanced technology. Of course accessibility is a good thing, but one can also argue that the arrival of this kind of technology can also put indigenous culture and tradition at risk. By combining QR Code technology with the very traditional art of textile weaving, Bert is bringing this infiltration of culture to the surface. The codes, when scanned with your mobile device, play one of a series of documentary films that contain several engaging protagonists who help unfold the story of the Mapuche people. Throughout history, textiles have been used by indigenous cultures to pass on the story of a culture from generation to generation. Perhaps Bert’s “encoded textiles” are a strange evolution of that tradition.