Pablo Reinoso recreates a basic park bench into a swirling chaotic knot of line and form, giving a new dimension to a common piece of furniture. By sculpting organic spaghetti shaped wood branches his ultimate goal is to modify the perception we have on simple objects. Those animated random pieces of furniture are meant to create a state of visual suprise, the materials (wood, marble, steel) are becoming living beings; new species of their own.
The artist extends the primal functions of a bench, a frame, a chair, a pillow and a slab of marble to a new dimension, gently associating sculpture and art with nature.
The result is baffling, our notion of space is reset as there is no manual of how to consider the transformed pieces. Pablo Reinoso builds a landscape from marble, an air ventilating machine from pillows, spaghetti roots from a bench and replaces the canvas of a frame with swirled pieces of wood with no other intention than to turn our world around. By reinitializing daily objects and giving them life we encounter Pablo Reinoso’s subtle prediction: “The presence of flora is a message, mother nature is somewhere around. And she could be taking over”.
Pablo Reinoso’s solo show can be viewed at La Maison de l’Amerique Latine in Paris, St Germain district until September 5th 2015. The Breathing Sculptures piece can be viewed at La Maison Rouge in Paris, Bastille disctrict as part of the Buenos Aires artists group exhibition until September 20th 2015.
Izumi Kato’s characters resemble angelic porcelain dolls. On the verge of breaking apart, they don’t seem to care. They just are, and that’s why they are so touching. The artist, from the tips of his fingers; with which he paints; brings to life innocent beings with extraterrestrial features. Their googly eyes, cracked noses and little bodies create an eerie harmony in the painting. So much that we would almost want to nurture them in real life.
As if he knew, their “dad” turned them into sculptures. He made them out of wood, three-dimensional, and as moving as their little brothers and sisters.
All that they evoke; strangeness, ambiguity, revulsion or sympathy is meant to dig into our contemplation on relationships. The poetic landscape of morbid embryos leads to question the nature of interaction with others but foremost with oneself.
Izumi Kato elegantly directs the viewer’s eyes to the characters’ heads, growing out of their svelt bodies, totemic figures; a blend of ancient Egypt and tribal African culture. He creates a bridge to our own head and thoughts because he wants the viewer to develop their own ideas from his abstract paintings and sculptures.
“Painting challenges the world. It is an unnatural form that has been singled out from our current three-dimensional living space. There is nothing strange about sculpture in our world, but painting is different. We search for another world in it.”
Common movie scenes are showing us police mug shots, incognito faces in crowds and wanted killer posters. None of these seem unnatural or chocking anymore, we are tamed by cyberculture and technology. We could not imagine having to go through an identity check other than with our passport, signature or a police officer physically present in front of us. Yet, we’ve already left those ancient methods and engaged with facial, retina and odour recognition; fingerprints and hand geometry. We’ve entered the biometric data era. Not always conscious of how fast the world evolves around us, Tony Oursler has set a mission to “invite the viewer to glimpse themselves from another perspective that of the machines we have recently created”. He has been exploring the link between the growth of our technological dependance and its effect on our psychology.
The artist has created magnified face images, some of them coated with a stainless steel panel embeded with video screens and others marked with geometric patterns of algorythmic facial recognition mapping. He is embarking us with a dash of humor into the disturbing technology’s effect on the human mind. Tony Oursler plays with the face. Starting with the eyes and going down into the neck, he is suggesting that technology will use every bit of skin and organ to study the daily behavior, emotions and rituals of humans in order to categorize them. The viewer when facing those giant profiles is left with the strange feeling of being watched. The artist wants to highlight how uncanny is the process of teaching machines how to observe only the external appareance and to pretend, from there, to understand human’s true nature.
Hard to believe that a gigantic in situ installation made out of thousands of poplar sticks was built from scratch. Yet, that is the work process of Ben Butler. He started to play with the sticks and came up, as he kept going, with the abstract shape of his piece. Exploration is what guided the artist to assemble the rigid squared voids among the organic impulsive sculpture.
He compares it to hiking in the forest and to realize that nature doesn’t adapt to the human scale. There is no limitation. Through this process we, humans, discover forms and need to engage in order to interact and build meaning. The voids created within the sculpture needs to be filled to complete the work. That is the dialogue Ben Butler wants to encourage between the piece and the viewer, let him make his own discoveries and introspections.
“The art shouldn’t be about art, you bring your owns ideas to it”. Ben Butler is not concerned by fhe final result. It doesn’t matter if it has nothing to do with his starting vision, his process of creation never follows the initial impulse. However, he is comforted by repetitive patterns and rigid parameters. He plays with methodology, in one direction and once the threshold has been reached it’s where a new characteristic emerges and enters an abstract zone that has nothing to do with the original components.
Ben Butler’s “Unbounded” installation is now showing at the Rice University Gallery in Houston, Texas until August 2015. When the exhibition is over, the 10,000 sticks will be disassembled and the sculpture will no longer exist as it was set up in the gallery. (via Design Boom)
‘You can’t be a feminist and like pink’. Society has a harsh way of making us feel completely out of line and out of context. Based on which criteria? Drumrolls… No one knows. That’s how the anonymous writer of the Ambivalently Yours blog started out. Tired of having to be labeled feminist or fashion girl when she actually wanted to be both, she decided to embrace her contradictions first by leaving notes anonymously in public places (supermarket, airport shuttle, bank machine), then by blogging and finally by drawing. She actually sends illustrations when she replies back to her readers. She uses pastel colors and a humorous tone that speak of the serious subject of finding oneself and accepting to being caught in the middle of two extreme identities.
She is basically saying outloud what a lot of girls and women are thinking and feeling. But who is she? She is a she, that’s all we know. No name, age, eye or hair color. She can be anyone, and that’s the beauty of it. She says the readers ask her questions with no interest in knowing more about details. It’s all about exchanging ideas, celebrating contradictions, confessing emotions, hi-lighting imperfections and being there for each other when no one else understands.
Recently, because being a “boldly undecided girl” is not enough, she decided to set herself a two dimensional challenge. During a 91 day residency at the CCA residency in Glasgow, UK she will answer over 300 emails by drawing back illustrations. The underlying challenge being to deal with uncut isolation and everything that goes with it: solitude, mistakes and meltdowns. The results are predicted to be brilliant as some of them can already be seen on her instagram account. (via Dazed Digital)
The trendiest bananas are far from looking yellow. Dan Cretu doesn’t let them stay that way. He gets them ready to strike a pose by handcarving and handpainting each one of them with geometric patterns, textures and vivid colors. No second degree, no political message; just the brilliant idea of admiring creative and colorful images.
Strangely enough they leave a taste in the mouth, the one of bananas of course, but with a twist of positivity and spontaneity. So many ideas to embellish a fruit, as we scroll down the “Bananametric Series” we can imagine that if the fruit was genetically modified by the artist we could end up with a large pallet of banana varieties.
Dan Cretu masters his art: by blending food sculpture with photography he offers the world a new idea of conceptual design. In his previous work he put together orange and lemon peels to make a camera. Due to its fragile nature, this process has to be done quickly as the fruits deteriorate. The peels, arranged in an unexpected environment rather than in a kitchen let’s say, generates in this case an eco-art visual identity.
That’s the purpose of Dan Cretu: “all objects and things around us daily are possible subjects for me. The challenge is to transform a common object that we don’t notice anymore into something unusual, alive, and appealing.”
Playing with human size dolls and dressing them up with colorful garments and crazy accessories to contemplate today’s identity is the medium Yinka Shonibare has chosen to express his vision. The mix of Victorian style dresses, tutus and adire; a textile made by Nigerian women creates an intriguing and marvellous symphony, pleasant to the eyes but disturbing for consciousness. ‘You will undergo environmental doom” the graceful and sarcastic Greek gods disguised as ballerinas seem to be announcing. ‘What is my identity?’ seem to be screaming the headless characters.
The dolls represent the rebellion that humans deserve for soiling the planet. It is a charming, fantastical staging operated by Yinka Shonibare to condemn agressive and violent acts with a clear message: he hopes to provoke the “psychic unity of mankind’.
Caught in an unceasing dichotomy: colony and metropolis, white and black, poor and rich, progress and destruction of the earth, traditional and contemporary society are subjects approached by the artist via atypical sculptures.
The subject touches directly Yinka Shonibare who considers himself as a “post-colonial” hybrid. He was born in Nigeria and raised in England, that explains his concern towards colonialism and post-colonialism within the contemporary context of globalisation. He flirts with intense subjects such as money, empire, conflict and environement. He questions the meaning of cultural and national definitions and he asks what constitutes our collective contemporary identity today while condemning the excess of destruction due to the humans excess violence against the Earth.
Yinka Shonibare will be showing his work at the following locations: Morris-Jumel Mansion in New York until August 2015 Daegu Art Museum in South Korea until October 2015
Contemporary African art Museo Afro in Brazil until September 2015
A tent made out of elephant skin as a large scale art installation. This does sounds like a shocking and provocative piece. Douglas White rips off our hearts and makes us angry before we even realize that he brilliantly fooled us. We are actually looking at an interpretation of what he encountered himself: an elephant’s deflated skin, draped and folded next to its bones like a collapsed tent. “Here was a body become landscape, a body both present and absent in which the distinction between the inner and outer had evaporated in the heat and decay. It was a body you could walk through…” said the artist. “Of all those objects that I ever encountered, this is the one I wanted most to possess…” Douglas White creates shapes, in between figuration and abstraction. Through his sculptures he is looking to get us sensitive on current problems like the environment, mass consumption and industrial products waste.
Ten years after his trip to East Africa and after numerous attempts in his London studio, the artist discovered a new way to work with clay. He conceived a thick and cracked texture close to a pachyderm’s skin. From there he developed a work of art around wood and clay. The result is bluffing: over 2500 lbs of wet clay suspended by a strange system of ropes, pulleys and wooden poles. By collecting thrown away or lost objects, Douglas White prefers to work with used materials to create spectacular and strange sculptures. Carbonized tires, containers, decomposed trees on a metal structure; through his art, Douglas White gives a second life to these abandoned materials.
If we makes analogies and dig into our primal instinct we can clearly see the reference to the structure of a circus big top. And if we dive even more deeper we can allow ourselves to link the song from Disney’s Dumbo soundtrack, “Song of the Roustabouts” to the name of the piece and we would be right to do so.