Here’s a lovely series of swimming figures painted by Colombian illustrator and painter Pedro Covo. Covo splendidly captures the obscuring nature of water as splashes are rendered in frenetic splatters of paint, and the sinuous lines of bodies seem to evaporate into brush strokes. The artist most recently exhibited at Río Laboratorio, and has also worked as an illustrator for the Walt Disney company. You can see a bit more over on Instagram and at the Colagene Creative Clinic. (via The Daily Blip, Empty Kingdom)
With origins that date back as far as the Tang Dynasty (around the year ~700), the Chinese craft of Dongyang wood carving is regarded by many to be one of the most elegant forms of relief carving in the world. The craft is still practiced in a few workshops in the region of Dongyang, China, and most commonly appears as ornate decoration on ‘everyday’ objects such as cases, cabinets, stools, desks and tables.
Perhaps the most ambitious manifestation of Dongyang wood carving is seen on enormous mural-like panels intended to be hung as artwork as seen here. You can see a few more examples via Lustik, Orientally Yours, Michael Lai, and XDYMD.COM
Chicago-based photographer Freddy Fabris has worked for years on commercial projets for clients like Leo Burnett, Saatchi & Saatchi, and Ogilvy & Mather, but it was a recent decision to focus on a personal project exploded into a bevy of awards and accolades. Fabris, who has a background in painting, had long been ruminating about how to pay tribute to the works of classic painters like Rembrandt and Da Vinci using his camera. While accompanying a friend to a cluttered auto repair shop, inspiration suddenly struck. Fabris would pose the mechanics in the style of classical portraits, and in tableaus reminiscent of Philippe de Champaigne’s The Last Supper and Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam. As he shared the idea with colleagues and collaborators, everyone quickly jumped on board and the Renaissance series was born.
While the photos are admittedly absurd, the staggering amount of craft and skill present in each shot is undeniable. From the careful composition of bodies to the striking use of light to illuminate the face of each subject, the portraits in particular are strangely dignifying. The photos have since won the 1st Place International Color Award, the One Eyeland Silver Award, and an APA Conceptual Award. You can explore more of Fabris’ work on his website.
When flipping through these prints by Netherlands-based printmaker Jaco Putker it’s difficult to pintpoint the exact emotion one should feel, but generally, if it’s somewhere between amused and terrified, that’s just what the artist intends. Putker combines both digital preparation with traditional photopolymer (solar plate) etching to create collages that can be both highly ridiculous and downright frightening. He refers to the artworks as “illustrations to fables which don’t exist, but hopefully take shape in the beholders’ minds.”
Artist collaborators David de la Mano & Pablo S. Herrero have unveiled mural after mural this year from Winter Haven, Florida to Gdansk, Poland. The duo uses only black paint to create elaborate silhouetted figures of trees, whales, and human forms. You can see much more of their recent work here. (via Colossal Submissions)
Spanish artist Manolo Garcia constructs towering replicas of renaissance-era sculptures, portraits, animals, and other decorative objects from his expansive workshop in Valencia, Spain. Garcia refers to his practice as ‘artistic carpentry’ and by looking at process photos of the studio’s work, that seems like a fair descriptor. Most of the set pieces, monuments, and sculptures built by Garcia begin with strips of wood that are applied to large architectural armature. The objects are usually so large they are first built in pieces and later assembled on-site.
Last March, Garcia participated in the annual Las Fallas (Fire Festival) in Valencia where a series of large artworks are set on fire at night as part of a Burning Man-esque spectacle. To be fair, the Fallas festivals in their current format pre-date the popular Nevada festival by about 44 years, and may have originated as far back as the Middle Ages.
Welp, now we’ve seen everything. Just last week, a new cafe opened in Romania called Enigma that claims to be “the world’s first kinetic steampunk bar.” We have no way to verify if that’s true, but it certainly looks impressive from these photos, if you’re into that sort of thing. A slightly terrifying humanoid robot with a plasma lamp cranium bicycles by the door, and a variety of kinetic artworks churn and rotate on both the ceiling and walls. Watch the video to take a peek inside, and if you’re in town you can visit Enigma Cafe at Enigma at Iuliu Maniu, Nr 12, Cluj-Napoca, Romania. Photos by Zoly Zelenyak from The 6th-Sense Interiors. (via Steampunk Tendencies)