Category: News

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? ...
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,...
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...
Nature

Amazing underwater photography taken by UPY photographer of the year winner, finalists

UK’s Underwater Photographer of the Year contest has just recently concluded and the winning photographs definitely did not disappoint. The contest was created primarily to celebrate the photographic talents of individuals in the field of underwater photography. The range of locations can vary from lakes to swimming pools to the sea – basically under any body of water. Along with the main award, the competition also has 10 other mini categories that test the skills of photographers namely Wide Angle, Behavior, Macro and Wreck photography. Gabriel Barathieu, with his “Dancing Octopus” submission, was revealed to be this year’s Underwater Photographer of the Year. The British Underwater Photographer of the Year, not to be mistaken with the former, was awarded to Nick Blake with his freshwater sinkhole photo entitled “Out Of The Blue.” Horacio Martinez was named Up & Coming Underwater Photographer of the Year with his white tip shark portrait...
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

#CompulsiveCharcoal advocate inspires people with Dermatillomania to face their compulsions and seek refuge through art

Liz Atkin, now of global fame, is a renowned artist who lives in London. For the most part of her life, she has battled compulsive skin picking (CSP) - clinically known as dermatillomania - and uses art to cope with this debilitating condition. She says, "Picking at skin is a very normal human behaviour, but CSP is categorised by the repetitive picking at skin to the extent that significant damage is caused, and it impacts on a person’s daily functioning. It’s not known why humans develop this disorder. For some, environmental factors influence the development of skin picking or hair pulling disorders, others have hereditary links where family members may pick. Drawing has become one of the best ways of all to channel the disorder and transform it. I’m now an advocate for the disorder, and speak and present about my work around the world. Making art about skin picking is not a ‘project’ but an essential tool in my life to work with the disorder and keep well....
Art

The macabre allure of Enrique Metinides’s crime scene photos is enduring

It goes without saying that to excel as a crime scene photographer, one has to have the guts to shoot macabre circumstances, in addition to the usual photo-taking skills. Celebrated Mexican photographer Enrique Metinides has a surplus of this hardiness, thanks in part to some exposure to bloody situations in his youth. After getting his first camera, he took pictures of crashed cars near his father's restaurant. Metinides, born in 1934, soon found himself tagging along with police officers who frequented his father's restaurant when there a crime scene. Metinides became a published photographer at the young age of 12. At 13, his unmistakable talent earned him a spot at the newspaper La Prensa. From 1948 until his retirement in 1997, Metinides took photos of numerous crime scenes, natural disasters, car crashes and at least one suicide attempt. The gripping narrative contained in his photos, made possible by his masterful composition of them, made him a renowned photographer,...
Art

Ron Mueck’s perturbing hyperrealist sculptures on view at Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts

Ron Mueck's works in the last two decades have been relatively few and far between, with only a little more than three dozen completed hyperrealist sculptures making up his oeuvre thus far. This sparseness, however, hasn't kept the Australian artist, who now works in the UK from becoming someone of great renown. That's bound to happen if one has a body of work that's evocative and perturbing as his are. Consisting of tiny and huge sculptures of mostly people (ranging from infants to the elderly ) that warrant a second look for confirmation of their inanimateness, Mueck's works have been in and out of museums around the world. Now, 13 of his sculptures will be on view at Houston's Museum of Fine Arts, after having spent time in museums in Paris, Sao Paolo and other cities. The exhibit will open on Feb. 25 and will run until May. You can view some of Mueck's hyperrealist sculptures below. ...
Art

French artist Abraham Poincheval will live inside a boulder for a week to ‘see what is really happening’

French artist Abraham Poincheval has in recent years been known for living inside a bear sculpture for 13 days. In a new performance art, the artist is doing it again, locking himself up in a stone block in which he will stay for a planned seven days. Poincheval entered the stone on Feb. 22 and will come out on March 1. Living inside an object is a way of understanding the nature of that object, the artist told journalists before embarking on his endeavor, taking place at Paris' Palais de Tokyo contemporary art museum. For him, it is in fact the superior way of comprehending. "I say to myself, hold on, what is this object really? And you ask yourself the question and say to yourself: 'Well, hold on, instead of distancing yourself and removing oneself from it, let's go inside and see what is really happening,'" Poincheval said. While inside the boulder, whose space within is patterned after the position of a seated person, Poincheval will subsist on stewed fruit, soups and purees....
Art

Jan Cieslikiewicz confronts our discomfort with the random and uncertain with new photo series

"Null Hypothesis," a new series by Polish photographer Jan Cieslikiewicz, bears the trappings of scientific thought. The series takes its title from the name of a hypothesis which posits that the connection between two phenomena is random, unless a scientist proves that it is not at all and is therefore calculable. Considering that Cieslikiewicz went to Harvard to study mathematics and subsequently worked as a Wall Street trader, the theme -- or, more to the point, the thrust --- of "Null Hypothesis" isn't surprising. The photos in the series each show what appear to be unrelated or contradictory components, and it is with this disjunction that Cieslikiewicz seeks to confront viewers regarding their thoughts on and reactions to life's random events and uncertainties. "I don’t think humanity as a whole can accept and genuinely come to terms with fundamental randomness and uncertainty," the photographer says in a statement accompanying the series. "Accepting...
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

A silent revolt: Using images and art to address our culture’s most critical issues

Perpetual Revolution: The Image and Social Change is an exhibition that is more than fitting, given our current societal cloud. The display of various artwork tackles six crucial issues that have been transformed by visual culture: #BlackLivesMatter, gender fluidity, climate change, terrorist propaganda, the right-wing fringe and the 2016 election, and the refugee crisis. It is a movement that proposes that a revolution is ongoing with regard to our politics and society - including technological innovations that allow the creation and spread of images - all of which have massive impact on social change. Over the past years, the transformation in our country's politics and culture have been epic and require our utmost attention. Perpetual Revolution takes a hard look at the image world that we are facing. It challenges us to explore the ever-changing and often-violent behaviors that come with it. This exhibit is truly mirroring the tradition of ICP in looking...
Art

Photos tackle importance of play to children in hostile environments

Mark Neville's photographs often focus on difficult circumstances, such as hazardous waste dumps and war, as well as the latter's offshoots like post-traumatic stress disorder. In his new exhibition, titled "Child's Play" and which features works collected over a 15-year period, children and the importance of play in their lives stand front and center. The theme may sound like a respite from the unpleasant realities Neville usually tackles with his art, but the catch is many of the children in the photographs are pictured in hardly livable places: a refugee camp in Kenya and a war-torn region in Ukraine, among others. In these dangerous environments, play is a breathing space, according to Neville. Play is "an outlet, a release, a kind of therapy,” the photographer said. "It allows children “to make sense of the horrors going on in the adult world and deal with them." "Child's Play" was launched on Feb. 3 and will run until April 30 at the Foundling Museum in London....
Architecture

The greatest architectural project in London that was never built

Mies van der Rohe, one of the influential architects behind the rise of modernist architecture, was very specific with the projects he wanted to design. As opposed to fellow modernists Le Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Wright, he insisted on “making the existing city beautiful” rather than creating utopian visions that can also be concluded as fantasies. True to his beliefs, the Mansion House Square was conceived. But it was only after his death that inquiries were made and the design was consequently denied. It was Mies’ classic “skin and bones” architecture with all the meticulously detailed planning and industrial steel. In one smart move, it would have been able to address the complicated traffic grid surrounding the Bank of England. And, adjacent to the City Mayor’s residence, a public square would have been created for the people – an ingenious yet controversial scheme. The discussion about Mies’ unbuilt Mansion House Square still continues on...
Culture

Witness the WiFi revolution in Havana through these captivating photos

Cuba has got 35 WiFi hotspots and absolutely busy citizens. After many years of expensive wifi connection possibilities, Cuba opened free hotspots around the country and the pictures below will show you how this affected the happy citizens. Just a year ago, most tourists couldn’t easily connect to the internet; the service was expensive and terribly slow. Well, things are finally changing! Talented British documentary photographer Jason Larkin captured photo collections that show us the current mood of "the nation on the internet". Take a look. ...
Art

Havana hosts ‘Fashion Art’, becomes a destination for fashion lovers and art fans alike

Fashion Art Havana is the latest event in the Fashion Art series, spearheaded by Manuel Fernandez, a Spanish designer who has traveled the world and worked with more artists than he can count. His goal is to create one-off garments that meet at the crossroads of art and fashion. In an interview, he said that "art doesn't have to always be hung on walls, it could also be on floor tiles, earrings, tights or many other places." Adding to that, a participating artist, Jorge Perugorria, also said that "fashion is also art, and this is a concept we need to start understanding here." All of the artists that participated had very positive hopes for the event, and for the objective behind it. They pray that this will help the rest of the world see Cuba as a fashion destination and an art haven, not just a mere communist territory where consumerists and capitalists can indulge as they please. ...
Art

Museum of Modern Art stands up against the travel ban by featuring works by artists from Muslim-majority countries

We've all heard the news. New President Donald Trump has ordered a travel ban for people (even legal US citizens) who come from Muslim-majority countries. While this is happening, massive disagreement is taking place, and MoMA is doing a silent protest in its own way. The Museum of Modern Art in NYC (merely two blocks from Manhattan's Trump Tower) changed its usual displays overnight. Now, it features and highlights works created by artists who came from Muslim-majority nations, specifically those affected by the ban. On February 2, seven art pieces were installed on the fifth floor. Next to Iraninan artist Siah Armajani's sculpture, an accompanying wall text makes it clear where they stand. The text reads: "This work is by an artist from a nation whose citizens are being denied entry into the United States, according to a presidential executive order issued on Jan. 27, 2017. This is one of several such artworks from the Museum’s collection installed throughout...
Art

Various groups pushing effort to redress long-standing gender inequality in art through powerful initiative

The Uffizi Galleries in Florence will open an exhibition on March 8 until April 30 to coincide with International Women's Day. Aptly so, it will feature more relevant works from female artists in an effort to address the gender imbalance in the art world which has been around for quite a while. The initiative will be a long-term effort together with other galleries and organizations. In fact, just two weeks after their exhibition, the Pitti Palace (a sister museum of Uffizi) will showcase self-portraits by Maria Lassnig, a late Austrian feminist and artist. The two museums will be the primary headers for an "open-ended" series of female-centric exhibitions which will focus on artworks from the past and present. This series is projected to become an annual celebration. The initiative has been in part an answer to the conversation the museums' director had with the US group Guerrilla Girls, an activist collective who have been fighting for the past three decades...
Art

New gallery opens in Rhinebeck, gives the art community a new chance to come together and connect

The [email protected] new destination for art lovers and aficionados. Technically, it is a non-profit organization and will be available for members who have registered. On a larger scale, the gallery will serve as an economic platform to help boost the community's tourism, while adding more opportunities for business and employment for the locals. It also is a chance for weekenders to get outside, enjoy some art, and come together and connect as a community. The Gallery will feature various types of art - installations, sculptures, and paintings hung on walls. On top of this, it will also serve as a home for many other forms of art, such as spoken word, theatric plays, poetry slams, and poetry readings. Live jazz and classical music performances will also frequent the new venue, giving musicians and songwriters a new hub to flourish their talent. There will also be fashion shows, fundraisers, and other events that will benefit Rhinebeck in many ways. See some of...
Architecture

Artists come together in clever and touching fundraising effort to help restore the burned-down Glasgow School of Art’s Mackintosh Building

From Grayson Perry to Anish Kapoor to Antony Gormley and several other artists (including Simon Starling, Cornelia Parker, the Chapman brothers and Sir Peter Blake) - there has been an immense number of individuals who stepped up in the Ash to Art project to restore the historic Mackintosh building, which has been gutted by the May 2014 fire. The artworks cleverly use the actual ashes and debris that were left in the wake of the burned-down portions of  Glasgow School of Art. Perry says, “It’s a tragedy. It’s the most famous art school building in Britain. It’s also the masterpiece of [Charles Rennie] Mackintosh. It’s a double tragedy. I was very excited when I received the box of charcoal. I had an idea almost immediately and the idea of making an urn was an obvious thing to do. The idea of memorializing or celebrating the difficulty – honoring the wound. It’s something I’m trying to do. Move on and make the most of it.” Each artist was...
Art

Painting in an abandoned soap factory, French artist Seth takes on Rome’s urban planning problem

Artworks created in decaying spaces are nothing new. We’ve all seen sprawling graffiti on the walls and floors of abandoned buildings, haven’t we? Untended structures seem to have some sort of an irresistible allure that beckons artists to create something in them. However, French street artist Seth’s (real name: Julien Malland) colorful paintings and installations in Mira Lanza, a long-since-deserted soap factory in Rome, Italy, make use of the space to pose a sobering question: Why do we just leave things to rot? Art organization 999Contemporary mounted the project, which consists mostly of paintings of children, to put Rome’s problem with urban planning in the spotlight, as well as juxtapose innocence (represented by the children in the works) with decomposition (symbolized by Mira Lanza). “This place [built in the 19th century] has been abandoned since the factory closed in 1957. Since I was a little boy there have been plans to turn it into a museum,...
Art

David Hockney’s life’s works on display at Tate Britain, creates record-beating history

Tate Britain will house the biggest ever collection of works by David Hockney. It will be a retrospective exhibition, with more than 250 pieces of art from the artist. Hockney, who was born in Bradford, has produced many influential works during the length of his career. Most of these stayed in private collections and were kept from the public eye, until now. One of his more famous pieces is A Bigger Splash, which has inspired the movie of the same title, starring Ralph Fiennes and Tilda Swinton. A lot of Hockney's pieces include water and swimming pools. He kept revisiting to these themes over the years. This is probably because of the influences he caught from living in Los Angeles on and off for decades. Another style he is accustomed to is the use of multi-panel paintings, often depicting scenic countrysides. You can learn more about this exhibition from Tate Britain. ...
Art

Singaporean artist Chua Chye Teck zeroes in on forests’ lines and forms in first book of photos

Singaporean artist and photographer Chua Chye Teck perhaps got more than he bargained for when he turned to hiking. Initially a way for him to increase physical activity, hiking provided an opportunity to observe and appreciate the composition of a forest -- not the obviously beautiful landscapes, mind you, but the way the trees are connected to form an expansive body. This is all thanks to his training as a sculptor, in which he is most attentive to lines, form, and structure. Enthralled by the splendor, Chua, 43, took photos of trees as he perceived them. The result of the two-year photography sessions in the forested domains is his recently released first book, "Beyond Wilderness." At first glance, many of the black-and-white photos look like ones of freely applied paint rather than trees. Chua is adamant in his belief that the wilderness possesses codes waiting to be deciphered. “There is a visual language to the wilderness that, just like English or Chinese,...
Art

Behind the scenes: Stop-motion artist creates important advocacy film in collaboration with Lena Dunham and JJ Abrams

The world is going through a lot of issues right now, and we need - now, more than ever - to have artists and celebrities fighting the good fight. Fortunately, we are in a surplus of these good people. An Emmy-winning stop-motion animator and director, Kirsten Lepore is collaborating with dozens of actors, artists, musicians, producers, directors, and visual artists to create a short film as an advocacy for Planned Parenthood. The film raises awareness about the pro-choice movement for women, which highlights their right to be free to know, own, and control their own body. The film is a collaborative effort between Natalie Berkus, Lena Dunham, Kirsten Lepore, and Alex Ronan. They had a lot of help from certain famous people, including America Ferrera, Mindy Kaling, Jennifer Lawrence, Hari Nef, Andrew Rannells, Cecile Richards, Gina Rodriguez, Amy Schumer, Meryl Streep, Tessa Thompson, Constance Wu, and Sasheer Zamata. The film's...
Art

Silver linings: Botched restoration of sentimental art piece boosts town’s tourism

Cecilia Giménez was once the laughing stock of the Internet community when they discovered her "botched" restoration of the Ecce Homo (Behold the Man), a sentimental artwork of Jesus Christ. She is by far no artist, but she had the best intentions when she took it upon herself to restore the deteriorating fresco, a process which proved to be more arduous than she expected. Because it took her so long, she took a bit of vacation before she continued working on it. However, before she was able to take a second look at her unfinished restoration, others have already discovered and swarmed over it. It was instantly viral news, and before she could defend herself, thousands of memes about her "botched" work have flooded the web. What would have been an unfortunate story ended on a positive note. Because of the fame that the art restoration garnered, the tourism of her little town, Borja, Spain, has skyrocketed. Now, locals are finding income in making and selling various...
Art

Creepy photo montage scenes created with old matte painting techniques

Suzanne Moxhay has been creating some amazing photo montage scenes lately. The surreal, often dreary, scenes combine photos from Moxhay's own archives as well as those transferred over from her professional practice. The artist uses a technique called matte painting, dating back to to the early 20th century, which involves creating backdrops on glass panels which are then integrated into movie sets. Talking about her recent works, Moxhay says, "Architectures are disrupted by anomalous elements – contradictory light sources, faulty perspective, paradoxes of scale." Check out some of her photomontage scenes below and find more on her website. ...
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