In 2011, Danny Choo with Culture Japan visited a place called Clone Factory in Akihabara, Japan in order to have his clone made. The clones are not made from human DNA, but are created using 3D image captures and effects to map facial shapes and measurements. Once the computer has digitally builds the 3D image of a face, the image can then be printed by a 3D printer. These clones are printed using layers of ink which harden in a plaster mold before getting cleaned up with small tools and pressurized air. A few days after Choo’s session, he received his clone, the head of which his producer stuck onto the body of a stormtrooper. Clone Factory can clone just about any solid object, and you can expect to pay around 138,000 yen, or around $1500 USD, for your clone.
Seattle artist Joe Vollan has an inventive imagination that lies somewhere between Edward Gorey, children’s fairy tales, with perhaps a little Tim Burton mixed in there. Mechanized skeletons of birds, wild beasts, a cat dancing around a fire, all forming splices of what could be either a tall tale or a nightmare, depending on your take. His work involves the dead moving about in a world where they continue to interact, and this playful imagery is embedded in a fictionalized version of Seattle, as the Space Needle is present in one particular painting.
As said on his website: “His works describe tales of heartache and adventure. The bulk of his paintings take place in the city of Rusted Gallows, a post apocalyptic, rundown factory town populated by secret skeleton societies and strange but friendly creatures. The characters in his works demonstrate that there can be contentment and hope in an otherwise dilapidated world.”
The dissecting cuts and lines shooting across the work of artist Jason Thielke create incredible images of figures full of expression. His incredible, illustrative art is made by laser cutting wood panels, with acrylic paint and ink to add color and highlight details. Many of his pieces have so many lines etched into the work; it is difficult to tell the negative space from the positive. Thielke makes great use of negative space in his etchings, forming intricate and dynamic shape and composition. Each figure contains so many marks streaking across their body, adding shapes and patterns that form constellations within them.
Thielke’s lines seem organic, swirling around the figures hair and face, forming expression. However, the etched lines are also highly geometric and architectural, building a blue print for the body. Such drastic, harsh angles create a dramatic atmosphere with striking faces filled with piercing eyes. These intersecting lines express,
“conflict between one’s ability to implement self control and compulsion to manipulate and constantly self-gratify.”
Thielke’s fragmented bodies cut through you with a powerful emotion as they keep pulling you deep under their spell, inviting you to examine every cut in the composition. The artist does not only uses the technique of laser etching to create his figures, but has also inked his cut wood panels like a woodblock and then used them to make prints. Thielke has exhibited all across the U.S. from Boston to San Francisco. His work can be found at David B. Smith Gallery in Denver, Colorado, where Thielke currently lives.
Sophia Narrett‘s detailed fictional scenes look like luscious oil paintings, but once you look closer, it’s clear they are a bit more special than that. She uses thread, wool and fibers to build dark and romantic narratives of men and women in group settings. The actions in each embroidery are at first unclear and seem a bit suspicious and foreboding. Her pieces are a bit like an illustration from a murder mystery. Growing up watching reality dating shows and reading books about romantic courtship and Victorian matchmaking practices, Narrett depicts a world that is cheesy, yet sublime and magical. The figures in her scenarios are camp characters in a glamorous story looking for happiness.
After switching from painting almost exclusively with oil paints to experimenting with embroidery and stitching, Narrett soon found the materials and techniques that suited her. She explains more to The Huffington Post:
As I continued working in embroidery I became interested in the repercussions that embroidery holds for the image and story, as well as the way that it dictates the process. As the emotionality of the narratives heightens to that of melodrama, the intense investment in the embroidery process required to create legible images speaks to the overwrought nature of the fantasy. (Source)
Her thread work is so rich and dense, the image seems to dripping of the canvas. Her work of beautiful fiction features women throughout, and Narrett is happy to connect the subject matter to the historical connection of embroidery being ‘women’s work’. She says this about the subject:
Of course, the embroidery connotes the tradition of embroidery as women’s work, as well as the feminist artists who subverted that history, while the paintings carry the weight of or are bolstered by the history of painting. Still I would say that my use of both mediums is primarily as a conduit for visual ideas. (Source)
And she expresses her ideas of fantasy, romance, courtship and magic beautifully. See more of her work after the jump.
Dutch artist Rosa Verloop uses nylon stockings and pins to create fleshy forms that look like newborns and octogenarians at the same time. She makes little folds, tucks and pleats in beige colored nylon so they resemble some strange sort of primordial life form. Working organically, she groups the stockings in different lumps and bumps and holds them in place with tiny stitches and tacks. Verloop’s sculptural faces are ones filled with deep-set wrinkles telling of well earned wisdom. Her human forms are contorted and twisted like they are in a state of being born or dying.
People in general experience these shapes as a deformation of the human body. For myself however, these are shapes with so much power, vulnerability and silence together–and therefore such inspiring–that I leave them in the way they came into being. I don’t change anything to these shapes or only very little. (Source)
Verloop not only creates and displays her human forms, but Verloop also participates in puppet events and shows with them. She performs alongside her sculptures, moving their appendages ever so slightly and mesmerizingly slow – like the creatures are dying in real time in front of the audience. The responses to her pieces range from disgust to wonderment. Verloop explains:
It’s amazing to see how some people observe with horror my sculptures while others are so attracted to get to touch them. […] As an artist, my intent is to spread a story, offering a feeling who stumbles into my sculptures. (Source)
Be sure to see more of her unique organic sculptures after the jump and decide for yourself if it’s attraction or repulsion.
The medium of artist Caroline Slotte is a familiar one. Dishes commonly found in homes and thrift shops become surprising dioramas. The simple images usually hidden under food become multilayered narratives. The many memories associated with family meals, dinner parties, milestone celebrations aren’t lost on Slotte. She says of her medium choice:
” Objects in our private sphere stir feelings in us and connect us to our history. They are tangible reminders of the past, of our own life story, and that of the family. In this way the most humble object can function as a key to the past, as a key to our inner.”