A few weeks back we announced the new format of Beautiful/Decay. It’s been great getting all the positive feedback and support from all of you. Within the first week we received over 300 new and renewed subscriptions!
We have 2 months until or first issue comes out and I wanted to urge all of those who want to get a copy of the magazine to subscribe as it’s looking like we will sell out of subscriptions within the next month. This means that issues will not be available on newsstands and only a handful of stores internationally will have copies.
If you aren’t familiar with our new direction you can read about it HERE
The new issue is by far our best, especially the cover which will be adorned by hand drawn art by Kyle Thomas. Yes that means every single copy of Beautiful/Decay issue: 1 will be a one of a kind, unique item!
Olaf Breuning commissioned a series of coffins to be created by Ghanaian casket makers. The design of eccentric coffins actually has a long history and tradition in Ghana, so to some this work is actually not that peculiar. Still, it’s not every day you see a coffin in the shape of a melting popsicle. More images of the coffins and the process of making them after the jump.
Moroccan painter Zakaria Ramhani creates large-scale portraits using Arabic calligraphy as a medium to convey form. Ramhani uses the beautiful painterly forms of Islamic calligraphy to depict and further expound and question political issues, Muslim identity, Islamic piety, text and image in the Muslim culture, amongst other things. Through his technique, the artist defies and contradicts the religious taboo on figuration, which is, to say the least, a very scandalous thing to do. These works are part of a collection called May Allah Forgive you, a name derived from childhood memories of his father, a landscape painter, trying to avoid working on commissioned portraits of the human figure for religious reasons. His father would explain to Zakaria that ‘only god will forgive’ him for the sins he committed whilst painting the commissioned portraits.
Ramhani’s earlier work, precisely a piece called You Were my Only Love (2012), incited much controversy, as the work questioned religious tradition and the prevalent coercion at hand during the last couple of years in Egypt and the Middle East. The piece was banned from last year’s Art Dubai.
Zakaria’s first U.S. exhibition opened November 6th, at the Julie Meneret Contemporary Art (JMCA), a new gallery on the Lower East Side in NYC.
In Ben F Carney’s digital world objects fly through your body, gravity takes its toll in unperdictable ways, and human skin can be strectched, torn, pulled, and bent in every which way possible. Make sure to check out the video by Ben after the jump.
In collaboration with the Vatican, a coalition of artists and humanitarians from the documentary Racing Extinction projected a stunning light show on the edifice of St. Peter’s Basilica. The videos display endangered animals and ecological crises from around the word, including whales, pandas, imperilled rainforests, and melting icebergs. As pointed out on My Modern Met, this demonstration follows a letter released from Pope Francis that makes clear the role humans play in the destruction of natural environments and non-human species. The goal of the light show was to foster awareness from the public, and on a political level, to encourage other influential figures and world leaders to acknowledge the loss and devastation.
Helmed by Oscar-winner Louie Psihoyos (director of The Cove), Racing Extinction features never-before-seen images that explore endangered species and the threat of mass extinction. Much like the light show—which is part of an ongoing (and vital) campaign to provoke action—Racing Extinction seeks to change the way we view the planet and the global beauty and vitality we will lose in the pursuit of our unsustainable practices. Such projects remind us that no matter where we are situated, even in our urban, human-centered habitats, we are always responsible and capable of changing the world’s grim outlook. (Via My Modern Met)
While in Dubai & Sharjah I had the chance to see some amazing arabic and persian calligraphy. If you’ve ever been into typography or graffiti you will surely walk away from this region with a renewed appreciation for the amazing calligraphy you find around every corner.
Music video director Nando Costa of Bent Image Lab has produced a truly surreal video for Indie rock mega group Modest Mouse. The video takes a bit to load but it’s well worth the wait.
Here is a description fresh off the press release!
The visuals follow an artist who enters his personal sanctuary where he is presented with a hand-crafted drawing tool that assists him in materializing his mental impressions. Through drawing circular patterns, the machine discharges an endless web of yarn that guides him through his visual representations of his memories. The story progresses to reveal that he is divided between two worlds, one of dull reality and the second of warped memories. In the process of finding a way out of his consciousness, he is trapped between the two competing spaces, which eventually inflict lethal damage, acting as metaphors to self-destruction.