Sleeping inside one of Edward Hopper's hotel room paintings

As part of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts' "Edward Hopper and the American Hotel" exhibition, the curators have created a brilliant installation and visitor experience that's seemingly made for Instagram. They built a physical version of Hopper's above painting "Western Hotel" (1957) and offered overnight stays inside the artwork. The overnight packages sold out very quickly. The New York Times' Margot Boyer-Dry was one of the first guests:

Every detail here was inspired by Edward Hopper’s 1957 painting “Western Motel,” which has been brought to vibrant, three-dimensional life. The only thing missing is the mysterious woman whose burgundy dress matches the bedspread. But that’s where the museum guest comes in.

I was the second person to stay in the museum’s Hopper hotel room, essentially becoming its subject for a night. (Before it sold out through February, the room cost anywhere from $150 a night to $500 for a package, including dinner, mini golf and a tour with the curator.) My time there was short — a standard stay runs from 9 p.m. to 8 a.m. — and awkward. I had traveled all day to reach Richmond, and these pristinely basic quarters were the main event. Ultimately, it reminded me of every other hotel room I’ve ever stayed in...

Ellen Chapman, a Richmond resident who stayed the night before I did, was more focused on the novelty of an art overnight. “I’ve always had that childhood fantasy of spending the night in a museum,” she said. “The remarkable part for me was waking up, drinking my coffee and looking at this amazing exhibit right next to me.”

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Portal Icosahedron sculpture like looking into another universe

Portal Icosahedron is a sculpture by Anthony James, "famous for setting fire to a Ferrari in a birch forest." Created with steel, glass and LED lights, the mirrors within generate an incredible repeating view of its own structure without including the observer or the exterior. It reminded me at one of William Chyr's new game, Manifold Garden.

Here's the gallery langue de bois:

Anthony James’ work takes up the concepts of the universal and transcendental in order to demonstrate the impossibility of their representation. The historical cosmology of Plato is a primary inspiration, both for the sculptures of icosahedrons and for the silhouette of Baroque architect Francesco Borromini’s dome for Sant’Ivo in Rome. Colorful rings of neon nod to the ancient concept of the universe as a set of concentric planetary orbits. The effect is both esoteric and industrial, orphic and distinctly concrete. Modern art historical references abound as well – Bruce Nauman, Ellsworth Kelly, Minimalism – but the artist’s attention is on the wonderment and possibility presented by distant ideals.

Portal Icosahedron, 2017 Steel, glass, LED lights 60 × 60 × 60 in 152.4 × 152.4 × 152.4 cm

Contact for price

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Ultra-thin USB powered light box

A light box is an excellent tool for illustrators. It allows you to place a sheet of paper with a sketch on it, then place another piece of paper on top of it, and trace the original drawing. A lot of artists do a pencil sketch on a sheet of paper, then use a nicer piece of paper to trace the sketch in ink.

Andreas Ekberg, a wonderful illustrator who makes beautiful stenciled skateboards (like this Jackhammer Jill deck) and other things, told me about this USB light board. I already have a light board, and I've used it for over 30 years. It's a clunky metal box with fluorescent tubes and I used it draw illustrations for the early issues of the bOING bOING zine.

I ended up buying a 5mm-thick USB powered light box for my daughter for Christmas a few years back. It works so much better than my old-school light box. The brightness level is adjustable, the LEDs will last much longer than the bulbs (mine currently has one burnt out bulb and I've been using it that way for years), and best of all, it is much more portable. Read the rest

Persistence of Pong

The Persistence of Pong is an art installation by Jesse Stiles, augmenting a standard game of ping-pong with sounds, colors, intense flashing lights and moments of complete darkness.

An ordinary ping pong table is augmented with reactive sounds and lights, turning the game into a disorienting synesthetic experience for players and spectators alike. The installation presents players with syncopated patterns of light that play with the illusion known as persistence of vision – the phenomenon that distinguishes between the perception of still images versus continuous motion. These patterns are triggered directly by the bouncing of the ball, which is detected by microphones embedded in the table. Similarly, the installation presents disorienting patterns of sound that teeter between rhythm (individual sounds) and pitch as the speed of the action increases and decreases based on game play. Players may choose to cooperate by trying to keep the ball in play through increasingly hallucinatory levels or may seek to destroy the competition in the most disorienting ping pong environment technology can provide.

You can play yourself at the LikeLike gallery in Pittsburgh, but you have to arrange an appointment outside of specified dates. Read the rest

Coop's tribute to Randotti Skulls, from the golden age of Haunted Mansion merchandise

From the 1950s until the 1980s, Randy and Dotti Smith supplied a line of fantastic cast sculptures sold in Disney theme-park gift shops, especially a line of skulls sold in shops associated with the Haunted Mansion and Pirates of the Caribbean rides; these Randotti skulls haven't been sold in decades, you can still find used ones (at high prices) online, as Boing Boing pal and fabulous illustrator Coop discovered when he sourced an impressive collection of Randotti sculpts.

Extinction Rebellion floats a drowned house down the Thames

Extinction Rebellion's Sinking House is a protest art-installation in the form of a suburban house drowning in the Thames. They launched it early last Sunday. Read the rest

Police thwart robbery at gallery that has already had the same Rembrandt painting stolen four times

Rembrandt's Portrait of Jacob de Gheyn III has been stolen from the Dulwich Picture Gallery in London four times:

Between 14 August 1981 and 3 September 1981 the painting was taken from Dulwich Picture Gallery and retrieved when police arrested four men in a taxi who had the painting with them. A little under two years later a burglar smashed a skylight and descended through it into the art gallery, using a crowbar to remove the painting from the wall. The police arrived within three minutes but were too late to apprehend the thief. The painting was missing for three years, eventually being found on 8 October 1986 in a luggage rack at the train station of a British army garrison in Münster, Germany.

The other two times, the painting was found once underneath a bench in a graveyard in Streatham, and once on the back of a bicycle. Each time the painting has been returned anonymously with more than one person being charged for its disappearance.

The gallery is currently promoting an exhibit called Rembrandt's Light, which just earned a lot of free publicity:

On Wednesday, police thwarted an attempted robbery at the gallery:

An intruder appears to have forced entry to the gallery and removed the two paintings, which were part of an exhibition.

Officers arrived minutes later and, following the search of the area, challenged an intruder and an officer gave chase.

The intruder then turned and used a canister to spray the officer in the face with an unknown substance.

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Booty Sandwich

Smack that ham. Read the rest

This guy hand-paints amazing art on Vans loafers

Wow. Read the rest

Splendid Soviet painting of classroom computers is yours for $2500

Marcin Wichary spotted this fantastic Soviet painting of youngsters at the computer on offer for $2500 on Ebay.

Russian Ukrainian Soviet author's painting. Painter: unknown. Time of the creation: 1980s y. Oil on canvas. painting will be shipped without stretcher in a tube. Size: 100x120 cm (39x47 in)

Big fan of ortholinear, big fan of Ukrainian thrift store art. Read the rest

Degas-style studies of Tom Holland performing Rihanna’s Umbrella

The official Youtube video of Tom Holland's performance of Umbrella on Lip Sync Battle has over 28 million views:

Alice Zhang has created several studies:

Her webstore is currently featuring Blade Runner prints, but has no Tom Holland prints, yet. Read the rest

Illustrator Mark Crilley's tutorial on adding shading to faces

My kids and I like to draw. We sometimes go to the weekly figure drawings sessions at the Art Directors Guild in LA, or we just sit at the dining room table and draw. As an amateur sketcher, I'm in awe of illustrator Mark Crilley's skill with a pencil, and with his instructional books and videos.  His videos are enjoyable and useful -- he explains what he is doing with a calm, soothing voice, and the tips he offers are often just what I need to gain new understanding about drawing. In his latest video, Mark shows how to add shading to faces.

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The Notorious B.I.G. as MODOK sculpture

Inspired by an illustration of the Notorious B.I.G. by Adam Rosenlund:

Rafael Phillips created the Notorious MODOK:

He has since made it available in a gray version:

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Taking pre-orders for the grey NOTORIOUS M.O.D.O.K. ! $75.00 per unit! If you’re interested, message me at Raphaelp3d@gmail.com . The gold chrome is still $250.00 per unit, but now we got options baybeeee! Let me know which one you want in the email 🤙🏾 . . . #raph3d #sculpture #collectibles #biggie #lightboxexpo #statues #marvel #hiphop #3d #instaart #modok #3dprinting #sla #fineart #marvelcomics #zbrush #digitalart #3dmodeling #sculptor

A post shared by Raphael Imhotep (@jehutysan) on Sep 6, 2019 at 1:26pm PDT

And now he is working on Jay-Z as Galactus:

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Phone call leads police to $800,000 in stolen art by an artist who believed Jesus was a space alien

Police in Los Angeles said on Tuesday they have recovered some $800,000 worth of stolen prints by the Scottish abstract expressionist and esotericist Benjamin Creme. Read the rest

Artist Drew Friedman has an exhibit at Ohio State University

A while back we ran some pages from Drew Friedman's new book All the Presidents, which has a portrait of every U.S. President, drawn by Drew. If you happen to be anywhere near Ohio State University, do yourself a favor and see Drew's "Drawn to Presidents” exhibit at the Billy Ireland Library & Museum.

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum presents Drawn to Presidents: Portraits and Satiric Drawings by Drew Friedman November 2, 2019 through February 9, 2020.

Pennsylvania-based illustrator Drew Friedman has employed his intensely realistic, warts-and-all style of caricature to satirize celebrity and authority for four decades. In his latest book from Fantagraphics Books, All the Presidents, Friedman points his pen at the exclusive club of the United States presidents.

This exhibit features the original artwork created for All the Presidents, as well as presidential-themed original art created for, among others, SPY, MAD, TIME, Newsweek, The New Yorker, The New Republic, The New York Observer, and TOPPS “Wacky Packs.”

Building on a centuries-old tradition of cartoonists satirizing those in power, Friedman’s influences include Edward Sorel, Robert Grossman, Mort Drucker, David Levine, and more.

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Lynda Barry's "Making Comics" is one of the best, most practical books ever written about creativity

I've been a fan of cartoonist, novelist and memoirist Lynda Barry for decades, long before she was declared a certified genius; Barry's latest book, Making Comics is an intensely practical, incredibly inspiring curriculum for finding, honing and realizing your creativity through drawing and writing.

Spectacular, robotic cardboard sculptures

Greg Olijnyk works as a 2D graphic designer, but his hobby is creating unbelievably wonderful 3D science fictional cardboard sculptures that sport motors and lights that animate them (some use photovoltaic cells for power, too). Read the rest

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