Our most popular posts this week featured a series of whimsical self portraits by Kaija Straumanis, sculptural formations made with hundreds of seeds suspended from wire strands, recycled bicycle seats transformed into taxidermy inspired works of art and a spectacular installation featuring a suburban home that appears to have fallen from the sky.
Hikaru Cho is a Tokyo-based artist who creates amazing hyper-realistic paintings that play on optical illusion and the perception of surface. At first glance, it might be hard to figure out what the deception is in these ordinary images, however a closer look reveals a tomato, a banana and an egg that have been perfectly camouflaged to look like an orange a cucumber and an eggplant. The project appropriately titled "It's Not What It Seems" showcases Cho's talent and skills in a playful way. Visual News writes, "In transforming what we see, Cho is helping us re-think everyday objects along with human form and nature."
"Deconstructed" by Toronto-based photographer Brandon Edgar Allen, is a series of photographs of dissected controllers collected from the gamers who owned them. Each controller was used and often played until it was no longer operable. Some have been physically altered, and others were damaged in attempts to fix them. These photos makes visible their inner workings, beautifully displayed, piece by piece, as reinterpretations of the tools we use to game.
Positioned on the forecourt of the Art Gallery of South Australia, "LANDED" is a sculptural work by Australian artist Ian Strange (previously), commissioned for the 2014 Biennial of Australian Art. The site-specific installation is an architectural replica of the artist’s childhood suburban home in Perth. However, rather than being located on a polite suburban street, the house appears to have fallen from the sky. In the words of catalogue author Ashley Crawford: “…the suburbs are full of houses that are meant to be homes. But all too often, hidden behind these neat façades, there is a void; a world of soulless boredom at best, a hive of domestic violence – both psychological and physical – at worst."
As part of last year's exhibit titled “Saddle Up!” at Hot Art Wet City gallery in Vancouver, Canadian artist Clem Chen created a series of cruelty free, faux taxidermy creatures using recycled bicycle seats. Aptly named "Bite It" and "Pink Eye", the sculptures were made by attaching plastic-cast taxidermy molds onto the bicycle seats with construction adhesive and 2-part epoxy glue. Additional sculpting was done using epoxy putty. The sculptures were listed as finalists for a recent designboom competition, the ‘ASIA AWARDS 2013′ conducted in collaboration with DA – japan design association NPO.
U.S.-based photographer and grad student Kaija Straumanis blends dark humor and everyday situations, creating self-portrait images that capture various random objects as they collide gracefully with her head. The photos appropriately titled "Stuff Being Thrown at My Head", are a series of visual representations of epiphanies, those moments of sudden or great realization that usually hit you like a ton of bricks, or in this case a dodgeball, a book, or even an ice scraper.
Continuing his interest in micro phenomenon, photographer Taisuke Koyama created a series of incredible macro photos of crystallized soy sauce. At first glance, the images in his latest series, “Circulation (Crystallized – Melted).” resemble close-ups of the burning surface of the sun, however a closer look reveals the hidden beauty of Japan’s favorite condiment.
Gowri Savoor is a visual artist, working in environmental sculpture and creating minimalist works made from organic materials. Using a variety of seeds, such as sunflower, pumpkin and apple attached to foot-long wire strands, Savoor creates stunning visual arrangements that resemble sound waves. Speaking about her sculptures Savoor says, “In themselves they’re very fragile. No matter what I do, the pieces will continue to decay. There’s a human sadness as well, that everything will eventually die.”
Artist Nemo Gould was recently commissioned by the Monterey Bay Aquarium, to create series of mechanical dioramas from found materials for their upcoming exhibit "Tentacles: The Astounding Lives of Octopuses, Squid and Cuttlefishes,” opening April 12, 2014. Each diorama has been intricately crafted using a variety of everyday objects such as door knobs, lamp parts, test tubes, electronic components and food cans. Gould's sculptures will help tell important conservation stories about the impacts that pollution, overfishing and habitat destruction have on these remarkable creatures.