Trou: a soft, CCTV-bugged interactive sculpture that you ram your hand and arm into

Trou is an interactive sculpture from Valencia, Spain's Mireia Donat Melús: the nylon and silicon fiber blob invites viewers to don a surgical glove and insert their hands and arms into an elastic orifice in the sculpture's surface -- and watching their probing appendage from within via a live video-feed. Read the rest

Striking similarity between David Bowie and cartoon man on Devo album cover

Joel Gion of Brian Jonestown Massacre posted these images on his Instagram. Coincidence or... something else?

Well, David Bowie did help Brian Eno produce Devo's "Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo!" (1978). But apparently illustrator Joe Heiner based the cover art on a photo of golfer Juan "Chi-Chi" Rodríguez mixed with an image Mark Mothersbaugh had "procured from a local newspaper that morphed the faces of U.S. presidents John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford."

Still, the resemblance here is striking.

More on the cover art at Wikipedia. Read the rest

Comic book art being auctioned off for a great cause

Giving generously to an important cause is cool. Y’all know what’s cooler? Giving generously to an important cause and, as a result, becoming the proud owner of a gorgeous piece of comic book art.

Cat Staggs — the co-creator of Crosswind and an artist on Wonder Woman ‘77 — was approached at a recent comic book convention and was commissioned by a fan, Danielle Van Lier, to throw together a gorgeous drawing of Wonder Woman. It was a sketch with a mission: to raise as much coin as possible for Immigrant Families Together. It’s a charity that focuses its efforts on improving the lives of families separated at America’s southern borders in the following areas:

• Raising funds through coordinated crowdfunding and individual giving in order to post bond for parents separated from their children • Paying bonds and providing pro bono legal representation to fulfill all legal responsibilities while awaiting trial so that they may be with their children • Arranging safe transportation from state of detention to the city where children are currently in foster care • When needed, finding long-term housing in the destination city while they await trial • Connecting parents with resources in order to sustain them during the process of being unified with their children • Working with local organizations and government to expedite the process of achieving full custody of their children while they await trial

Given the shitty way that the Trump administration has been treating families seeking safe harbor from the dangers of their homes, this is vital work. Read the rest

Street artist droplifts 'back-to-school' bulletproof vests

Plastic Jesus, the Los Angeles-based street artist behind the "Future Internment Camp" signs and other cool stunts, is back with a new piece. For his latest work, he's droplifted specially-tagged bulletproof vests in the kids' back-to-school section of three Target stores and one Macy’s in Los Angeles.

He writes:

“Back to school” get everything you need for the new year. Including ‘Bullet Proof Kids™️- Level 3A bullet proof vests. By Plastic Jesus industries . This one at Target . Los Angeles. “Show your child how much you care... Don’t let your child be the next victim... money back guarantee... endorsed by the NRA” Coming to a store near you.

And in Newsweek, he's quoted as saying:

“Good visual communication has to engage people, not switch them off or horrify them. This might be a potential reality. We might be sending our kids to school like this...

We’re finding so many excuses to validate these shooters. Things like video games or bad families are being used to excuse their actions. Seeing shootings so normalized is abhorrent."

“We’re finding so many excuses to validate these shooters. Things like video games or bad families are being used to excuse their actions. Seeing shootings so normalized is abhorrent.”

photos by Plastic Jesus Read the rest

Artist soaks materials in blood, sweat and urine to embed crystals in them

Alice Potts engages in what she calls "human body design," creating bioplastics by soaking materials in body fluids to embed them with crystals. Read the rest

This colorful homage to classic desktops could occupy you for hours

Mariano Pascual has created a delightful nod to classic desktop layouts for his new site, but it's updated with all kinds of colorful bells, whistles, and Easter eggs. Read the rest

Watch this soothing and sumptuous video of brightly-colored substances interacting

Artist and designer Rus Khasanov (previously) has created a bright and highly-detailed montage of colors colliding. What really sets this apart is the beautiful music by Dmitry Evgrafov. Read the rest

Artist didn't realize his painting was inspired by a parasitic worm in his eye

Ben Taylor, a 47-year-old artist, was inspired to paint a trippy, colorful circle filled with abstract worm-like patterns. He never finished the work. Years later, Taylor identified the subconscious inspiration for the painting: a 1" African parasitic worm called a Loa loa that he didn't know had taken up residence in his eye but had caused years of illness. Now his painting is on the cover of the medical journal Emerging Infectious Diseases (PDF). From the Washington Post:

“I suppose there was almost a sense of relief . . . just because I realized I wasn’t going mad,” Taylor said of his diagnosis...

While recovering, Taylor began painting again, and while rummaging in his home studio, he came across... the unfinished work he had shelved earlier...

He grabbed his paints and brush and began to finish it. He drew the lashes and the sclera, or the white part of the eye. He painted over the middle, so that the intricate wormlike patterns look like spiraling galaxies disappearing into the dark pupil. He added the worms — long, white and nearly transparent images slithering from the eyelids. “Untitled” became “The Host.”

"His health had been failing for years. Then he saw something crawling in his eye" (Washington Post) Read the rest

Artisan creates beautiful, delicately colored glass sculptures

Slovenian artist Kaja Upelj moved to London for school, where she has been creating interesting experimental glass works with unusual colorations and deliberate occlusions. Read the rest

Watch this colorful mesh sculpture transform a Greek ruin

Juxtaposing bright spray-painted mesh with the ocean vista of a 400-year-old Greek ruin, artistic duo Quintessenz created Kagkatikas Secret. Read the rest

Kinetic sculpture of Franz Kafka's metamorphosing head

David Cerny (previously) created this wonderful kinetic sculpture of Prague's own Franz Kafka. Read the rest

Former Archbishop of Canterbury on Tolkien as a warning against fascism

Here's former Archbishop of Canterbury Rowan Williams on J.R.R. Tolkien, often seen as a reactionary but also the creator of a myth of Englishness completely opposed to fascism and other rotten boughs of capitalism.

So, how do we now respond to Tolkien’s imagined world, a world that is hierarchical, notoriously short on female agents, and which was accused by the poet Edwin Muir of being populated exclusively by different-sized schoolboys? As with Lewis, the complaint about implied misogyny is regularly coupled with worries about racial stereotyping, the romanticising of violence and the reduction of moral issues to cosmic battles between absolutes.

It is worth noting that Peter Jackson’s superbly visualised film versions of Tolkien’s novels if anything intensify some of these problems. But things are not quite that simple. ...

...he ends up writing, despite himself, a story that is more of a novel than a myth. Myths have no authors, it has been said. Even with the apparatus of invented language and ethnography, Tolkien’s history and “legendary” are haunted by the self-awareness of a particular type of 20th-century author: English, Catholic, academic, intensely aware of the devastation of a very specific England by industrialisation and urbanisation, more stoical than optimistic, yearning for a shared social narrative that would reaffirm certain solidarities of faith and mutual respect; deeply conservative but just as deeply opposed to unexamined power and the tyranny of profit.

Read the rest

12% of music industry revenues go to musicians

There are more people who want to make art than the market would support, and the arts are a highly concentrated industry: combine those two facts and you get a buyers' market for artists' work, controlled by intermediaries, who take almost all of the money generated by the work. Read the rest

Watch an artist make remarkably lifelike cat portraits from felted wool

Wakuneco uses wool felt to make amazingly detailed custom-ordered cat portraits that look uncannily like the subjects. Here are how the finishing touches like whiskers get done. Read the rest

This Rick and Morty green screen tattoo is fantastically effective (for now, anyway)

Tattoo by Roy Rowlett of Mama Tried Tattoo Parlour in Louisville, Ky.

Read the rest

Fantastic German psychedelic animation from 1970 by Yellow Submarine's art director

Heinz Edelmann (1934-2009) was the German illustrator and designer best known for art directing the Beatles' 1968 animation Yellow Submarine. In 1970, he created this magnificent opening animation for the ZDF broadcast movie series "Der Phantastische Film."

(r/ObscureMedia, thanks UPSO!)

Read the rest

The Strandbeests of 2018 are from the very greatest of timelines

For more than 15 years, we've been writing about the strandbeests, Theo Jansen's incredibly, multilegged windwalking machines that clatter their way along in eerily lifelike fashion (I even wrote them into my fiction). Read the rest

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