Category: Culture

Art

The annual Armory Show is back, takes a deeper look into multiculturalism and other important issues today

The Armory Show is one of the most popular art shows in the country. Each year, it comes back and features highly important pieces of work from various artists. From painters to sculptors to performance artists, the show has become a huge platform for great talent. This 2017, multiculturalism takes the center stage. The focus is WHAT IS TO BE DONE? By raising awareness through art, the audience and participants get to work towards social change. The show's curator, Jarrett Gregory, points out that “this is not political art, nor does it have an agenda—it is art that helps us to see the historic moment in which we are living.” There definitely is a difference between meaningful art and political art. The artists are not taking sides or beliefs, but rather are educating the world about the issues that we must give focus to. The show runs through Sunday, March 5th. ...
Art

Father of auto-destructive art dies, leaves behind grand legacy of activism and artistic idealism

Gustav Metzger is one of the most popular artists in the political arena. At a young age, he has become a big name in anti-capitalism, anti-consumerism, and the disarmament of nuclear weaponry. Born in 1926, he was destined for an activist's life. Many consider Metzger as an "artist's artist". He described his work as “a desperate last-minute subversive political weapon and attack on the capitalist system (an attack also on art dealers and collectors who manipulate modern art for profit)”. One of the biggest lessons that he always mentioned was that of artists' role as destroyers (as much as they were creators). He emphasized that artists need to "make fewer things". “We have no choice but to follow the path of ethics into aesthetics. We live in societies suffocating in waste,” he said in one of his rallies. Now that he has left us, he will be leaving behind some very grand lessons and works of art. ...
Art

William P. Chappel’s paintings offer glimpse of life in early 19th-century New York City

If for any reason you've wondered what New York City was like in the 19th century, you might want to look to William P. Chappel's (1801–1878) paintings to get both broad and specific ideas. Chappel, who was a tinsmith by profession but was also an amateur -- and accomplished -- painter, depicted life and happenings in New York, which, if the artist's works are any indication, seems to have always been lively and animated. Twenty-four of his works whose subject is the city are currently on view at the the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in an exhibit that will run until May 14. The paintings show the many facets of life in New York City, including how the dwellers plied their trade, what they did for pastimes, what technologies were present at the time, what the traditions were like, and what happened at night, among other subjects. The 24 paintings by Chappel that are on display at the Met may be viewed here. ...
Art

Instagram artist makes lip art to die for, paints pregnant Beyonce on her mouth!

Jazmina Daniel is not your ordinary woman. She is not just talented. That would be an understatement. Her canvass of choice? Her lips! She has been posting amazing lip art on Instagram, and her latest work involved her painting Beyonce's pregnant photo on her lips. Without a doubt, Queen Bey's fans went crazy. The Australian artist captioned her photo: “I know I have a lot of Queen 🐝 Fans out there! This one is for you! @beyonce Tag the Queen if you think she’d approve 🐝,” She explained, “I chose to recreate Bey’s pregnancy announcement because everyone was so excited about it. There were a lot of people recreating it in pictures and I know that a lot of my followers were Beyoncé fans so it just seemed right to do. I felt inspired in the moment to do it!”  Some people can't even put lipstick on properly! Check out more of her amazing works below: ...
Art

Selfies gone bad: Tourist accidentally trips onto an $800,000 art piece inside exhibit

How far will you go to get an Instagram-worthy photo? A visitor at the recent event, Infinity Mirrors - All the Eternal Love I Have for the Pumpkins by Yayoi Kusama, held at the Hirshborn Museum in Washington, D.C. accidentally tripped on one of the installations while attempting to get a selfie. Although no official announcement was made, it is rumored that the sculpture amounts to $800,000. It may not be entirely the visitor's fault, though, since there is a limited number of people allowed inside the installation at a single time. This means that there is low to no security personnel to guide the tourists about the proper behaviors acceptable. The installation is described as "narrow walkways, transparent barriers, and plenty of darkness". But whether this is the case or not, people should really start behaving more like civilized tourists during these sophisticated shows. After all, the artist did work really hard to get these done, don't you think? ...
Art

Renowned artist from Myanmar was destined to become a painter from childhood

“My father ordered us to play music, paint, and more until we were 10 years old. After we turned 10 if we didn’t have any interest in the arts we were allowed to choose something else. But I took an interest in art. I created art and music, I became a movie director… Directing is the art of storytelling." These were the words of Myanmar icon Win Pe. Throughout his career, he has become an award-winning director and filmmaker, as well as a radio producer in other Western countries. He is now 82 years old - and has dabbled into various fields of art, including working as a cartoonist, writer, and editor. However, painting seems to be the core of his interests even after all these years. “I have always created paintings. I read painting books. I even dream of paintings,” he says. Learn more about his work. Win Pe's latest exhibition is at the Yangon Gallery. ...
Art

Russian artist illustrates brutally honest portraits of the modern world

Vladimir Kazak certainly aims for a lasting great impression with his new collection. The Russian-born artist, who, according to his website, enjoys “drawing women and airplanes,” perfectly depicts modern day thinking in his brutally honest illustrations. His shocking portrayal of everyday life shows the irony and truth about people in this age that is almost never talked about. The artist argues his works are purely satirical and insists the comical factor of his collection. One of the illustrations show people, all made to look like robots, sitting indifferently beside each other inside a train. Another illustration shows an aerial view of a woman’s covered breasts with hungry-looking pigs all sitting around her. This particular art was thought to seemingly point out the unwanted harassments that women are subjected to every day. Some critics think Kazak’s art is too political while others seem to agree with his unobstructed view of the modern world....
Architecture

Marcel Breuer’s legacy in architecture and design is remembered in photos at the Met Breuer

The Met Breuer, the iconic museum in Manhattan, New York, formerly known as the Whitney Museum of American Art, has commissioned photographers Luisa Lambri and Bas Princen to take photos of some of the renowned works of the museum's namesake and architect, Marcel Breuer (1902-1981). Now exhibited at "Breuer Revisited: New Photographs," the museum's first architecture exhibition under its new name, Lambri and Princen's works capture the modernist spirit of Breuer's approach to architecture and as well as pay tribute  to the visionary quality of his oeuvre. Lambri and Princen took compelling snapshots of four of Breuer's landmark buildings, namely the Saint John’s Abbey Church in Collegeville, Minnesota, the UNESCO headquarters in Paris, the IBM Research center in La Gaude, France, and, fittingly, the Met Breuer, which is renowned particularly for its form as an inverted ziggurat. The photos are characterized by their masterful employment of chiaroscuro,...
Culture

Israeli girls photographed at age 15 and 20: See the powerful transformation unfold

Comparative photography has successfully been embedded in today’s modern culture. From scrawny then-and-now pictures to memorable “Throwback Thursday” posts, the new technology-crazed generation has become more creative in sharing photos that show interesting and, most of the time, funny comparisons. A young Israeli, however, managed to take the whole "flashback" trend into new, powerful heights in just one photo series. Neta Dror, a Tel-Aviv-based photographer, started her project back in 2011 by taking photographs of Israeli girls – all aged 15 but came from different backgrounds. In 2016, she followed up on the girls and took again their photographs expecting to document some kind of change. The series was named, fittingly and simply, “At 15 & 20” – and the results of the photographic analysis were stunning. From innocent poses to defensive gazes, the evident changes in their body languages were perfectly captured by Dror. Some had...
Art

Yayoi Kusama and the interesting story behind her art

Yayoi Kusama could just be one of the, if not the most, legendary living artists we have today. This 87-year-old Japanese virtuoso has worked in a variety of media including painting, collage, sculpture, installations, performance art, film, and writing. Most, if not all, of her works revolve around her thematic interest in psychedelic colors, repetition, and pattern. Kusama's inspiration in creating is quite unusual. Her art is largely influenced by how she wants her viewers to get a glimpse and understanding of how her reality looks like. Interestingly, this artist has experienced hallucinations and severe obsessive thoughts since childhood which often is suicidal in nature. This can be due to the physical abuse she suffered from her mother as a small child. It was earlier in her career that she discovered what eventually became her trademark -- polka dots, or infinite nets as she calls them. For her, art is therapy and she describes herself as an obsessive...
Art

Tray tables of Delta Airlines aircraft come alive with colorful drawings of vibrant cities

Passengers of one of Delta Airlines' Boeing 767 planes will be in for a treat when they assume their places on the aircraft. Right on the tray tables in front of the, they will see vibrant drawings by a number of artists commissioned by the airline as part of an initiative to celebrate the liveliness and culture of several cities around the world. The artworks in the project, which was mounted in cooperation with Coca-Cola, feature the artists' interpretation of life in London, Sao Paulo, Shanghai, Los Angeles, Paris, Mexico City, and Seoul, among others. Some of the artists who took part in the campaign are Stevie Gee, who depicted Los Angeles; Alex Yanes, who drew Sao Paulo; Ping Zhu, who tackled Shanghai; Pedro Campiche, who made an artistic representation of New York City; Sac Magique, who submitted a collage-like drawing of Amsterdam; and Yulia Brodskaya, who took on Seoul. Their drawings appear below in the order that they were mentioned. The original trays are...
Architecture

Illustrations pay homage to the rough beauty of Brutalist architecture

Eschewing refinement, Brutalist architecture was both a reaction to the style that came before it and a necessity of the times. The movement, characterized by ruggedness and bulk and which saw its glory from the 1950s through the 1970s, rejected the flair and finesse of 1930s and 1940s architecture and, at the same time, answered the need for inexpensive structures which resulted from the economic depression that followed the Second World War. Because of its disregard for comfort, at least in a visual sense, Brutalism -- whose name is derived from the French word "brut," which means raw -- has often been overlooked, notwithstanding the appreciation it got for its straightforwardness and utilitarian quality. In recent years, however, Brutalism has experienced a resurgence in popularity. The Brutalist idiom is once again being showcased, discussed and analyzed, on the Internet, in books, and even in film, such as the 2015 dystopian feature "High Rise." Brutalism...
Art

Artists from all over the world converge in the Centre for Computing History to create Teletext art

Teletext seems like an ancient relic to most of us. But just recently, artists from all over the world came together in an event to create Teletext art. They met in Cambridge at the Centre for Computing History, reveling in the wonder of the artform. For these people, this is not all old news - instead, it is a current, exciting, and real way to express themselves. They spent an entire weekend celebrating this unique form of art in a congregation known as the "Block Party". Raquel Meyers, a Swedish artist who has been amazed in using Teletext as an art form since 2012, explained: “It isn’t something you can make a profit from, so you can actually play with it. The idea is to show to people that you can do really crazy things and be really creative with something that’s supposed to be limited.” See the celebration and learn more about Teletext from the museum's website. ...
Architecture

Critiquing ideas of national identity and globalization using caged taxidermied birds and an upside-down tree

"Question the Wall Itself," a new exhibition at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, is all about the capacity to interrogate symbols and their (varied) meanings. As its title might suggest, the show features installations that poses, and arouses, questions on customary notions of space, both within and beyond a structure -- not only in a physical sense but, more importantly, in a psychological and political one. In the interactions between the works and the viewers, these notions are expected to be challenged or even reconstructed, making beholders reflect on, or perhaps cast a doubtful look at,  their own perceptions of belonging and identity. What belongs to whom? Does anything really rightfully constitute exclusivity of ownership? One of the works exhibited is Rosemarie Trockel’s "As far as possible." The work is composed of taxidermied birds in a cage and a palm tree hanging from the ceiling, along with other exoticized objects. Fionn Meade, artistic...
Art

Becoming the truest form of yourself is the best way to express and create art, a young man realizes

As a third-year student, Matthew Bateson never thought that the time would come when his life would revolve around art. When he was younger, all he ever cared about was "guy" stuff, like sports and skateboards. Of course, these activities led to more than a few physical injuries. He reached a certain point where he realized that he was mortal - and he cared enough to preserve his health and life. Unknown to him, then, was the opening of another opportunity: the window of art expression. “I want my art to be the truest manifestation of myself,” according to him, “It’s hard to verbalize the style or feeling behind my work so I would say that I have a loose style. My sculptures, my prints, they all have this fluid quality. I’m inspired a lot by spontaneity and whatever feels right. The most important thing is to just work really hard at what you’re doing and not care what other people think of you.” You can find more of Bateson’s work on Instagram. ...
Culture

Immigrant photos taken in Ellis Island from 1905 share powerful message

Back in 1890, the US Government situated the federal immigration station at Ellis Island, a tiny island in New York City. During his years as registry clerk at said station, Augustus Sherman, an amateur photographer, took portraits of immigrants that came in through the island. His subjects were often persons, families or groups that have been detained for medical reasons or interrogation purposes. He would often encourage them to wear the traditional clothes they have brought in their suitcases, resulting in a myriad of widely diverse, interesting photos. Providing unassuming labels such as “Romanian shepherd,” “Albanian soldier,” and “Serbian gypsies” also added more intrigue to his subjects. This has led him to take more than 200 captivating portraits ranging from tattoo-filled German stowaways to Guadeloupian and Ruthenian women wearing intricately designed clothes. The recent news of U.S. President Donald Trump’s travel ban may have...
Art

The coolest PR firm in the entire world, Freuds, is beaming chock full of art

Have you ever wanted to work in a "cool" office? I bet that you have. Well, if you are any one of the employees in the London-based PR firm Freuds, then you're probably pretty contented with your workplace. As it turns out, this seemingly regular office from the outside is filled with eccentric and vintage artwork inside. The firm was founded by Matthew Freud (yes, he is related to Sigmund Freud). Once you get inside, you'll find everything from dinosaur remains to motorbikes to paintings to vintage furniture. There's an Obama painting, as well as art pieces by Banksy and Damien Hirst. When you view the office from the Fitzrovia side street where it is situated, you would never for a second mistake it to be uber exciting indoors. Whether you're in need of public relations services or not, you will surely want to take a peep inside their unusual offices. ...
Culture

New NSW exhibition features Warhol’s lesser known work, signifying that he always was ‘a commercial artist’ by heart

The Art Gallery of New South Wales has a new exhibition featuring the lesser-known career of Andy Warhol in the field of advertising, entitled "Adman – Warhol Before Pop". Nicholas Chambers, the exhibition curator, tells us, “He found New York at this incredible moment – the end of the 40s and start of the 50s, when ad land was on the rise. He was meticulous about keeping everything. He held on to all these things. The mono-printing technique is a distinctive aspect of Warhol’s early work. You can make multiple images – but all are unique. Between 1955 and 1959, go to page 93 of the New York Times and there would be a large-format Warhol illustration, signed of course. One thing I think is really important for Warhol around this time is the interconnected practices – commercial art and fine art. In his last interview, he said, ‘I was always a commercial artist.’ He was always crossing between high culture and low culture and doing it in a way that’s unashamed....
Art

Hundreds of artists create chalk paintings on the streets, turning Lake Worth into a temporary “outdoor museum”

The 23rd Annual Lake Worth Painting Festival was another resounding success this year. Last February 26, the final day of the festival took place. Hundreds of artists flocked to create an "outdoor museum" of sorts on the street, catching the attention of passers-by, both local and tourists. Located at the Lake Worth downtown area, the streets were paved with colors and shades using chalk to create art that can captivate the hearts of art lovers anywhere. This festivity is unique because the art was ephemeral, lasting for a mere few hours or until the rain and traffic has washed it off of the streets. It is thanks to the photographers who can keep these temporary moments eternal, for everyone to see. The street Painting Festival is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization. all proceeds raised produce the street Painting Festival event, and benefit the street Painting Festival scholarship and community projects associated with the arts. ...
Art

Exceptional choreography through contemporary dance and performance art creates a visual spectacle for public audiences

Branch Nebula aims to engage its audiences through performance art, continually pushing the boundaries of political and social awareness. The founders, Lee Wilson and Mirabelle Wouters, have used the project as a platform for their communal creativity since they began in 1999. Through modern dance and performance in the public sphere, they reach out to audiences who would not ordinarily go to theaters (mostly because of socio-economic reasons). "This is site-specificity of the most immediate kind, a visceral connection to a place of play, not its social role or its history, in a display of what is often regarded as fun but here as art without losing the integrity of its popular foundations. The outcome is a visual spectacle, impeccably choreographed so that star turns are embedded in and shoot out of the mesmeric poetry of the grand sweeping collective rides and runs that transform the concrete into a magic, enabling vessel." – Keith Gallasch, Real Time ...
Art

2017 Oscar noms get pop poster treatment thanks to amazing design team

It's awards season once again! Just last year, we saw amazing poster art for each of the Oscar-nominated movies from the amazing design team at Shutterstock. This year, they are at it again! Featuring fan favorites such as La La Land and critically-acclaimed masterpieces such as Manchester by the Sea, Fences, and Hidden Figures, the Shutterstock design team are creating "pop" posters, taking inspiration from a handful of artists and icons (Andy Warhol, Richard Hamilton, Roy Lichtenstein, to name a few). It may be hard to believe, but every element used in creating these fantastical posters came from their collection of stock photos! If you haven't seen these movies yet, you can bet that after browsing these posters, you'll get your interest piqued in no time. Whether you're a fan of the movies or just the poster art, you will be in for a real treat. Check out the collection below:  ...
Architecture

SXSW 2017 to showcase enthralling installations under new art program

South by Southwest has indeed grown so much from its beginnings in 1987. Evidence of that is its upcoming exhibition of five art installations under the new SXSW Art Program, which launches in March, during the conglomerate's music and film festivals and conferences for this year. Both budding and known artists will take part in the program. Among them is Los Angeles-based artist Refik Anadol, whose work titled "Infinity Room" will be showcased. The work is made up of a space that transforms a beholder's view of reality into a "three-dimensional space of visualization." Speaking of the new program, SXSW chief programming officer Hugh Forrest said, "Art and Design [have] always been central to the SXSW ethos, and we have quickly become a recognized platform for visual artists to showcase art installations and connect with filmmakers, musicians, and technologists. The Art Program is the first time we have formalized the program and sought leading artists to design...
Architecture

‘Take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints’ – the beauty of abandonment

‘Take nothing but pictures and leave nothing but footprints’, this is a simple rule that leads photographer Valerie Leroy through her adventures. Usually, with a group of friends, she travels around the Brussels with an aim to discover places and objects that once were made and used by humans and now are abounded. Although the experience is unforgettable and the risk worth it, one should be careful when stepping inside an old dusty house of industrial complex. To do this kind of hobby or job, one has to be a daredevil. Going to abounded places can be creepy and illegal too. Valery is deeply in love with the beauty of abandonment and respects all that she finds in front of her curious eyes. Abandoned trains, abandoned factories, abandoned hotels, houses and much more to be explored on Valerie’s blog and Instagram. ...
Art

Contemporary sculptures by today’s most important and talented artists on exhibit this year

Many colleges and universities give importance to art. All over the country, you'll find amazing appreciation for various art forms, some even putting into place extensive programs to nurture talent. One of these is Jesus College, which houses a grand permanent collection. You can find impeccable sculptures on their grounds, created by artists such as John Bellany, Stephen Chambers, Barry Flanagan, John Gibbons, Antony Gormley, Albert Irvin, Richard Long, David Mach, Sarah Morris, Humphrey Ocean, Eduardo Paolozzi, Cornelia Parker, and Alison Wilding. In addition, they also hold an event called "Sculpture in the Close" every year. Since 1988, this has been an annual tradition. The college has historic courts and properly maintained lawns, which make for perfect backdrops to the artworks. Of course, the sculptures themselves are the highlight of the event. Check out some of the astonishing sculptures found on the Jesus College grounds, photographed below:...
Architecture

Historic plans and drawings from the Nazi era available online at the Library of Congress

Roman Totenberg, a Polish violinist, was an immigrant who came to America in 1938. At the time, Europe was widely antisemitic, thanks to the influences of Nazi Germany. Totenberg put in a lot of effort to make sure his family is kept safe from the inevitable force of cataclysm. Previously - in 1935 - his mother joined him until she was also able to escape to the US when the Nazis took over France (1940). Totenberg's efforts, however, were not enough to save his sister Janina Ferster and her family, who were trapped in Warsaw as the war broke out. Janina lost her husband but survived together with her daughter until the Allies won the war. Janina's daughter, Elizabeth Wilk, now gifted the Library of Congress with some of the family's papers to be part of the Totenberg Collection. Vital materials such as documents, drawings, photo albums, letters, and telegrams are proof that they were in Poland before and during the Holocaust. These also serve as evidence of Totenberg's efforts...
Architecture

Ancient and modern cultural symbols blend in Cairo’s City of the Dead

At the sight of graffiti amid a historic site, the usual, or expected, reaction is one of disdain or anger, right? The huge colorful paintings of cartoon characters on the walls of an ancient necropolis in Cairo's City of the Dead, however, are instead drawing interest from locals and tourists alike because of the creative blending of the ancient and the contemporary. And that's exactly the aim of "Outside In: the Art of Inclusion," a project mounted within the 15th century complex built by Mameluk Sultan al-Ashraf Qaitbey which has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site . "What we want to do is to bring together the old heritage, the traditions of this particular place, with creative contemporary art and with various cultural events to promote diversity. Old meets new, death and life come together in the city of the dead, where we can exchange ideas and culture between East and West," Agnieszka Dobrowolska, the Polish architect who leads the project, told Reuters....
Art

‘Maker Faire Kuwait’ exploded with technology and art, featured some of the country’s brightest talents

Maker Faire Kuwait took place at the Kuwait International Fair, the largest event space available in the country, last February 9 to 11. It was a grand event that highlighted "makers" to share their work, collaborate with each other, and inspire younger generations of makers. Many of the participants used everyday objects as well as recycled materials to create astonishing works of art. This event is only one of the series of Maker Faire exhibitions. Be sure to watch out for the next destination to be included in the series. Below are some of the artists who participated in the Maker Faire Kuwait event. Check these out and be inspired to CREATE and MAKE! (From top to bottom: Pottery and Sculpture by Sara Al-muail, E-buru Paper Marbling Demo by Wael Al-saleh, Model Ships by Ali Mohsen, Art by Omer Al-hamed, and Scroll Saw Art by Faten Fahad.) ...
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