Indonesian artist Ono Gaf works primarily with metallic junk reclaimed from a trash heap to create his animalistic sculptures. His most recent piece is this giant turtle containing hundreds of individual metal components like car parts, tools, bike parts, instruments, springs, and tractor rotors. You can read a bit more about Gaf over on the Jakarta Post, and see more of this turtle in this set of photos by Gina Sanderson. (via Steampunk Tendencies)
To commemorate the centennial of Britain’s involvement in the First World War, ceramic artist Paul Cummins and stage designer Tom Piper conceived of a staggering installation of ceramic poppies planted in the famous dry moat around the Tower of London. Titled “Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red,” the final work will consist of 888,246 red ceramic flowers—each representing a British or Colonial military fatality—that flow through grounds around the tower.
Volunteers began placing the poppies several weeks ago and the process will continue through the summer until a final flower is symbolically planted on November 11th. You can read more about the project over on the Historic Royal Palaces website, and see the volunteers’ progress by following the #TowerPoppies hashtag on Twitter.
As part of the Memorie Urbane street art festival in Italy, Norweigan stencil artist Anders Gjennestad (aka Strøk) painted this shadowy mural on the side of an old school. This is just one of numerous pieces created for the festival including many Colossal favorites like Pixel Pancho, Seth, Pablo Herrero, Natalia Rak, Levalet, Ernest Zacherevic, Etam Cru, David de la Mano, and Alice Pasquini. (via Fecal Face)
Photographer Oleg Oprisco (previously) who lives and works in Kiev, continues to wow us with his vivid style of conceptual photography that places subjects in the middle of surreal and fantastic tableaus. Oprisco spends large amounts of time scouring flea markets and resale shops to collect props, costumes, and other items for each shot which he often sketches beforehand in a sketchbook, with the final shoot requiring 2-3 days of preparation. I love this bit from an interview with 500px earlier this year where he was asked to give advice to amateur/student photographers:
I strongly advise to use your time wisely. Laziness is your worst enemy. Enough looking at photographs taken by your idols. You’ve commented on enough work that you hate. It’s time to take photos. Your best photos. Let go and shoot, shoot, shoot!
In an ongoing series by Joana Vasconcelos, the Portuguese artist has been wrapping various animals—wasps, lizards, snakes, crabs, lobsters, frogs, bull-heads, donkey heads, horse heads, wolves and even cats—in five-needle lace, handmade cotton crochet. But these aren’t any old animals. Vasconcelos has appropriated the ceramic artwork of Rafael Bordalo Pinheiro (1846-1905), one of the most renowned Portuguese artists of the 19th century.
Each of the pieces “are ambiguously imprisoned/protected by a second-skin in crochet-work,” says Vasconcelos. At once both beautiful and strange, the work stands as a testament to the extraordinary craftsmanship of the artist but also as a one-upmanship of maternal femininity and domesticity. The use of crochet to mummify the ceramic animals “opens up a vast and rich field of interpretation” that challenges our preconceptions of femininity, as well as our notions of tradition and modernity. (via Trendland, Ghost in the Machine)
Warsaw-based artist NeSpoon uses ornate lace patterns in her unique brand of street art that translates into ceramics, stencils, paintings, and crocheted webbing installed in public spaces. NeSpoon refers to her art as “public jewelry,” specifically as an act of beautification by turning abandoned and unadorned spaces into something aesthetically pleasing. You can see much more over on Behance. (via My Modern Met, Unurth)
Artist Isaac Cordal (previously) is well-known for his creation and placement of miniature cement figures in public places around the world as part of an ongoing series called Cement Eclipses. While the meaning behind each tiny sculpture is intentionally ambiguous, it’s impossible to look at each piece without imagining a story. The pieces often appear in scenes of mourning or despair, as part of what Cordal says is commentary on humankind’s disregard for nature and as foreshadowing of potential consequences. From his artist statement:
Isaac Cordal is sympathetic toward his little people and you can empathize with their situations, their leisure time, their waiting for buses and even their more tragic moments such as accidental death, suicide or family funerals. The sculptures can be found in gutters, on top of buildings, on top of bus shelters; in many unusual and unlikely places.