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Erin Rachel Hudak’s Public Installations Celebrate Love And Color

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The always-colorful work by Erin Rachel Hudak has the distinct ability to seduce with its bright and vibrant appearance.  Hudak consistently produces work that looks happy and exudes love.  The attraction, while complete, can be somewhat misleading, and upon closer inspection Hudak has often encoded a message, lesson, or suggestion hidden within the colorful work.

“Love You Forever,” a temporary installation in both New York and Idaho, included mylar balloons.  An adoring public service announcement in both locals, the installations became  celebrated destinations.  However, despite the message of everlasting adulation, the installations were completely fleeting.  On the one hand the works were romantic and beautiful gestures, or from another perspective they were impossible promises.

Often Hudak entertains such distinctions, juxtapositions and opposites—using the way ideas are defined by separation from other ideas.  The concept is almost always referencing, or completed by, the viewer.  Her outdoor installation-to-be at Paul Artspace in St. Louis involves a mirrored sculpture that reads “You Are My Reflection,” involving the viewer in a process of self-analysis.  Combined with a rich visual vocabulary involving metaphors and language, Hudak’s works are always highly symbolic.

Catch her latest installation at the SPRING/BREAK Art Show taking place this weekend in New York.  “Waterfall Wall” installed in the stairway of the SPRING/BREAK space is a cascading barrage of color and reflective surface.  It is the visual manifestation of Hudak’s observations about power, freedom, access and restriction.

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Michael Wolf’s Copy Artists

Michael Wolf’s photographs of Chinese copy artists is absolutely brilliant. I’ve always heard stories about how you can get anything copied in China for dirt cheap but  this series absolutely blows me away. I love the tiled alleys that the photos are taken in and the casual nature of the copycats. For instance check out the water flowing towards the painting in the above image. What if that really was the Mona Lisa? Can you imagine someone dragging it into the alley into a puddle for a quick photo op?

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Stacy Kranitz: Project Target Unknown

Stacy Kranitz

Stacy Kranitz focuses on the multidimensional character of Leni Riefenstahl, whose focused vision and murky set of morals greatly inspired Kranitz. These grey areas spoke to her desire to understand people beyond the constraints of good vs. evil.

During Pennsylvania’s yearly reenactments of the Battle of the Bulge, Kranitz portrays Leni Riefenstahl and behaves with soldiers as she would. Kranitz examines how the photograph documents and shapes history, since much of our conception of history is based on images. The 500 reenactors base the authenticity of their looks on images and, in particular, on Riefenstahl’s film Triumph of the Will. Kranitz focuses on how these historical images have been filtered through both the media and propaganda, becoming history as generations pass and memories fade. Photographs and film become the dominant forces that shape the public imagination.

Sarah Roesink

IMG_6248-503x336 Sarah Roesink is a London based photographer with a strong interest in recording the atmosphere of the moment.

3D Drawings Come To Life In Eric van Straaten’s Hyperrealistic Sculptures

Eric van Straaten - 3D printed sculpturesEric van Straaten - 3D printed sculptures

Eric van Straaten - 3D printed sculptures

Holland based Eric van Straaten is one of the most technical and talented 3-D sculptors in the world. According to trendwatchers, 3D-printing is the next big thing: in the near future, every household will own a printer that is capable of printing digital three-dimensional objects into a physical object. In the process that is best known under the name ‘Additive Manufacturing’, a 3D-printer builds up a model layer by layer by selectively hardening liquid or powder.

If this powder is a plaster-like material, a model can be directly printed in full color. The 3D-printing of delicate and colored models is far from being just pushing a button, but requires great technical skills. Therefore only a few specialize in this technique and there is no artist who pushes the boundaries of colorized 3D-prints as far as Eric van Straaten.

There is no technique that is capable of achieving such a great degree of hyper(sur)realism as 3D-modeling. At the same time, 3D printing is the only technique with which virtual models can be made actually physically touchable. Physical expressiveness in form and content is the biggest strength of the work of Eric van Straaten: while the sculptures remain to have a certain digital feel to them, the pieces contain a weirdly eroticized corporeality. Balancing on the edge of kitsch, the marzipan-like quality of the material resonates beautifully with the apparent innocence of the scenery. –Prof. Dr. Arnold Ratsberger

eBoy Interview

Digital Design Collective eBoy Discusses their Limited Edition BD Apparel Shirt “Jerk”

The digital design collective eBoy, comprised of Steffen Sauerteig, Svend Smital and Kai Vermehr recently sat down with Beautiful/Decay to answer a few questions about their recent limited edition shirt, “Jerk.” eBoy’s design was one of our most technical cut and sews ever, taking months to produce! Only 250 of these exclusive shirts were produced and are selling out fast- visit our Online Shop to purchase one!

Read on to garner some of eBoy’s pixellated points of interest and inspiration behind their work and Beautiful/Decay Apparel design.

BD: Can you talk a little bit about your design collective and how it got started?

eBoy: We started in 1998 with eboy.com. The concept was to only show our free projects and art. The first feature about eBoy was in a Japanese book, from there the level of awareness for eBoy grew steadily.

eBoy design

eBoy design

BD: Can you describe your aesthetic, how you became interested in the pixel-by-pixel look, and what you think it says about the current visual digital climate today?

eBoy: One of our previous projects was a digital picture book series called Ogdig(c)’s, which was distributed on diskettes. It was that project that made us start to work for the screen only and use pixels as the technique of choice. When we went online with eBoy.com it was justnatural to go on using this technique.

eBoy work for Coke

eBoy work for Coke

BD: What are some of your inspirations, whether visual, musical, ideological…?

eBoy: ffffound.com … TV Shows like The Wire, Sopranos …

BD: What was the inspiration behind creating the Eboy shirt?

eBoy: Northern Irish murals!

Example of Northern Irish propaganda Mural

BD: What was the process like of creating your artwork in a t-shirt form, what were the most enjoyable parts, or most challenging?

eBoy: We were thinking of the T-shirt as a house with awkward window positions.

To learn more about eBoy, visit their B/D Artist Profile or the eBoy website.

The Bizarre Fan Art of World Dictators

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Kim Jong-un, originally posted by @harleyjohnson92 on Instagram

kimjongun

Kim Jong-un, originally posted by @jacob_skyler_allen on Instagram

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Vladimir Putin, originally posted by @miss1718 on Instagram

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Muammar Gaddafi, originally posted by @fabiankytir on Instagram

The world of fan art knows no bounds. Television shows like Game of Thrones and Sherlock have countless drawings and paintings dedicated to them (and the celebrities that star in them), but what about world dictators? We’re talking Putin, Gaddafi, Kim Jong-un, and more all with colorful drawings, paintings, and even homages made from donuts.

Some of these images are just ridiculous, like Kim Jong-un riding a dolphin over the beach (in a background that looks as colorful as a Lisa Frank illustration). Others are more serious attempts at portraiture, like the work of Amsterdam-based artist Michele Boccamazzo. He mixes pen, ink, and watercolor in realistic renderings like Bashar al-Assad. “Some of them are just born with a silver spoon in their mouth, some believe in their vision of a better world and some are just status seeker (or social climber) with a smart politic career.” He writes.

With the atrocities suffered at the hands of these men, they hardly seem like candidates for fan art, so perhaps its best to peg some of these images as satire. It makes looking at these works even more bizarre than what’s already pictured.  (via Lost At E Minor and Vocativ)

Sexual Experience Deconstructed In Erotic Photos (NSFW)

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The photographer Sarah Anne Johnson snaps shots of the most intimate kind, asking friends and acquaintances to sit for her while engaging in sexual activity: intercourse, foreplay, kissing, masturbation. Later, the artist enters into a new kind of dialogue with the erotic photos, covering her portraits in glitter and gold plate or scratching away their emulsion in strategic places.

The form of Johnson’s series, titled Wanderlust, brilliantly echoes its content. In penetrating the materiality of the photographic medium by altering its surface, Johnson makes as much of a statement about artistic or creative lust than she does about human sexuality. The gently cracked, ashy layer of a burnt chromogenic print mirrors a lover’s tender caress; similarly, a halo of scratches parallels a couple’s orgiastic pleasure.

Despite Johnson’s unconventional process—perhaps even because of it—Wanderlust seems a powerfully honest rendering of sexual intimacy. At times, human closeness becomes cosmically infinite, a moment of love solidified in gold plate or starry glitter. But many of the photographs complicate the notion of what it means to be truly vulnerable; often, her collage work obscures and flattens one lover, leaving his or her partner alone, isolated in the frame and utterly naked.

Johnson’s work relies on this tension between connection and isolation, a theme which serves to imbue the series with a palpable sense of sexual tension; for instance, two bodies are deconstructed in Puzzle Pieces, formatted to appear unified under one complex and paradoxically disjointed aesthetic. Simultaneously penetrating the viewer and and leaving us to gasp for air, the body of work is a must-see. It is currently on view at Toronto’s Stephen Bulger Gallery. (via Art in America and Feature Shoot)