Category: History

Full Trailer for ‘Loving Vincent,’ a Feature-Length Film Animated by 62,450 Oil Paintings 

The full trailer for Loving Vincent (previously here and here), a film examining the life of Vincent van Gogh, has finally been released after nearly six years of creative development. Each of the 62,450 frames for the feature-length film were hand-painted by 115 professional oil painters, and will integrate 94 of Van Gogh’s paintings into the animation. First captured as a live action film, the final oil paintings replicate each shot, recreating the entire film frame-by-frame. Loving Vincent is written and directed by Dorota Kobiela and Hugh Welchman, and produced by Poland’s BreakThru Films and UK’s Trademark Films. You look behind-the-scenes of the film in the video below, as well as keep up-to-date with release information on the film’s Twitter and Facebook.

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16th Century Miniature Boxwood Carvings That Fit in the Palm of Your Hand 

Photo by Craig Boyko

Carved the size of a palm or smaller, these miniature boxwood carvings featuring religious iconography from the early 16th century have long been a mystery to researchers in the field. It is believed that the entire body of work was created during a 30-year window between 1500 and 1530, somewhere in Flanders or the Netherlands.

The tiny altarpieces, rosaries, and prayer beads are each produced from a single boxwood fragment, incorporating pins smaller than a grass seed that hold the pieces together. Using micro CT scanning and Advanced 3D Analysis Software, curators and conservators of Small Wonders: Gothic Boxwood Miniatures an exhibition at The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) in collaboration with the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Rijksmuseum have gained new insight into the materials and subject matter of each boxwood carving.

Small Wonders: Gothic Boxwood Miniatures will showcase AGO’s collection along with 50 other loaned pieces from other museums and private collections, including some rare carvings that have never been seen in North America. One work, the eleven-bead Chatsworth Rosary (c. 1509-1526), was owned by King Henry VIII and his wife Catherine of Aragon. You can tour the full exhibition yourself at the AGO through January 22, at the Met Cloisters on February 21, 2017, or when the exhibition makes its last stop at the Rijksmuseum on June 15, 2017.

You can also follow AGO on their journey to discovering the mystery behind the boxwood miniatures in the video below, as well as see detailed images from the entire collection on AGO’s website. (via The History Blog)

Photo by Ian Lefebvre

Photo by Craig Boyko

Photo by Ian Lefebvre

Photo by Craig Boyko

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The First Dinosaur Tail Found Preserved in Amber is Covered in Feathers 

Photo by R. C. McKellar, Royal Saskatchewan Museum. Courtesy National Geographic.

Photo by R. C. McKellar, Royal Saskatchewan Museum. Courtesy National Geographic.

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A micro-CT scan reveals the delicate feathers that cover the dinosaur tail. Photo by Lida Xing, courtesy National Geographic.

The first known dinosaur tail preserved in a piece of amber was recently discovered by paleontologist Lida Xing while collection samples in Myanmar last year. Dating back to the mid-Cretaceous Period some 99 million years ago, the roughly apricot-sized piece of amber contains a 1.4-inch appendage of 8 vertebrae unmistakably covered in primitive feathers. Scientists ruled out the possibility of the tail belonging to a bird, and based on its structure believe it came from a juvenile coelurosaur, a group of dinosaurs that includes tyrannosaurs. Via National Geographic:

While individual dinosaur-era feathers have been found in amber, and evidence for feathered dinosaurs is captured in fossil impressions, this is the first time that scientists are able to clearly associate well-preserved feathers with a dinosaur, and in turn gain a better understanding of the evolution and structure of dinosaur feathers.

The findings were first published today in a report co-authored by Ryan McKellar in Current Biology and you can read more on National Geographic.

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The Timeless Beauty of Vintage Aerolux Light Bulbs Containing Floral Filaments 

From the 1930s through the 1970s, Aerolux Light Corporation produced these amazing novelty light bulbs that contained sculptural filaments in the shape of flowers, birds, and myriad other designs that would illuminate in different colors. The bulbs contained a mixture of neon or argon (or both) and some of the components were coated with phosphors to achieve different color effects. Via Wikipedia:

Aerolux gas discharge light bulbs contained low pressure gas, either neon or argon, or a mixture of the two. Also within the bulb were metal sculptures coated with phosphors. These phosphors fluoresced when excited by glow discharge. Because glow discharge occurs readily at 110-120 volts AC, one could use these bulbs in standard household lamps in the United States.

The phosphors used in the bulbs were somewhat brittle, necessitating care in handling. Shaking or jarring the bulbs would cause flaking and migration of the phosphors to other parts of the metallic sculpture. Such handling would leave non-fluorescing portions of the sculpture and/or migration of phosphors to other surfaces within the bulb.

At the height of production some of the bulbs sold for a mere .20 cents, but can now fetch hundreds of dollars on Ebay or Etsy. If you happen to be in New York you can see a bonafide Aerolux bulb that’s on permanent display at MoMA as part of an artwork by artist Dan Flavin. (via Neatorama, Geyser of Awesome, Oddity Central)

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Via CPS2

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Dan Flavin, Roses. Aerolux Flowerlite light bulb, ceramic flower pot, cord and light switch. 8 1/2 x 5 1/4″ (21.6 x 13.3 cm). Courtesy MoMA.

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Classic American Ephemera Recreated in Clay by Artist Kristen Morgin 

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“Monopoly” (2007) (Collection Kristen L. Morgin, image courtesy of the artist and Marc Selwyn Fine Art, Beverly Hills)

Kristen Morgin creates objects that at first seem forgettable. Each piece shows evidence of wear, containing the rust and rips of things that have ceased to be cared for long ago. Despite their appearance of cardboard, tin, and paper, the works, which reflect American culture’s ephemera, are actually created entirely from unfired clay. The records, VHS sleeves, board games, and figurines are all illusions, recreations of mementos lost to time.

Morgin keeps her pieces unfired to retain the natural texture and look of the clay, a material that changes drastically once altered by fire. Like the objects that they imitate, her sculptures are meant to eventually crumble, possibly holding an even shorter lifespan than what they resemble. The content of these works focuses on fantasy versus reality, highlighting celebrity and beauty that has long past, created by a material that is not what it seems.

Morgin’s work is included in the four-artist exhibition “Visions and Revisions: Renwick Invitational 2016” at the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Renwick Gallery in Washington, D.C. through January 8, 2017. (via Smithsonian Mag)

"Sorryland" (2012), unfired clay, paint, ink and marker, 28 x 20 1/2 x 3 3/4 inches (image courtesy of <a href="http://www.anthonymeierfinearts.com/artists/kristen-morgin/slideshow?view=slider#7" target="_blank">Anthony Meier Fine Arts</a>)

“Sorryland” (2012), unfired clay, paint, ink and marker, 28 x 20 1/2 x 3 3/4 inches (image courtesy of Anthony Meier Fine Arts)

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“The Repeating Table” (2010), wood, books, toys, records with clay painted counterparts, 45 x 68 x 108 inches (image courtesy of Zach Feuer)

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“150 Ways to Play Solitaire” (2010), wood, wire and unfired painted clay, 34 x 34 x 12 inches (image courtesy of Zach Feuer)

"Still Life As The Alphabet" (2013), unfired clay, paint, ink, graphite, wood, 5.5 x 37 x 2 in

“Still Life As The Alphabet” (2013), unfired clay, paint, ink, graphite, wood, 5.5 x 37 x 2 in (image courtesy of Zach Feuer)

"Still Life As A Conga Line" (detail), (2014), unfired clay, paint, ink, graphite, 18 x 96 inches

“Still Life As A Conga Line” (detail), (2014), unfired clay, paint, ink, graphite, 18 x 96 inches (image courtesy of Zach Feuer)

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“Ecstasy Pyramid” (2016), unfired clay, paint, ink, marker, crayon and graphite, 38 x 37 x 2 inches (image courtesy of Anthony Meier Fine Arts)

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“Another Wonderful Day” (2013), unfired clay, pint, ink, crayon, graphite, 12.25 x 12.25 x 0.25 inches (image courtesy of Zach Feuer)

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“Space Invader” (2012), unfired clay, paint, ink, graphite and wire, 13 3/4 x 16 1/2 x 1/4 inches (image courtesy of Anthony Meier Fine Arts)

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