Photographers Create Meticulously Faithful Dioramas of Iconic Photos 

Making of “The Wright Brothers” (by John Thomas Daniels, 1903)

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“The Wright Brothers” (by John Thomas Daniels, 1903)

It all started with a joke—a rather ironic challenge, if you will, to recreate the world’s most expensive photograph: Andreas Gursky’s Rhein II. Because for commercial photographers Jojakim Cortis and Adrian Sonderegger, that meant tolling away in their spare time when money wasn’t coming in to recreate a photograph that had just sold for $4.3 million. This was the beginning of Ikonen, an ambitious project to meticulously recreate iconic historical scenes in miniature. The ongoing project includes immediately recognizable shots—the Wright Brothers taking flight, the Lock Ness Monster poking its head out, “Tank Man” halting tanks during the Tiananmen Square protests—because the images have been seared into our collective memory.

“Every field has its icons, guiding stars, which reflect the spirit of time in form, media and content,” says the photographers. And when something is photographed, it has a way of transcending time rather than becoming isolated. Historical symbolism is fluid and our perception of it can change the same way history can. This, perhaps, is why Cortis and Sonderegger pull away from their miniature scene at the very end, revealing what each photograph actually is: paper, cotton balls, plastic and plenty of their own spare time. Photos shared with permission from the artists. (via Wired)

Making of “Nessie” (by Marmaduke Wetherell, 1934)

Making of “Five Soldiers Silhouette at the Battle of Broodseinde” (by Ernest Brooks, 1917)

Making of “Tiananmen” (by Stuart Franklin, 1989)

Making of “AS11-40-5878” (by Edwin Aldrin, 1969)

“AS11-40-5878” (by Edwin Aldrin, 1969)

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Making of “Lakehurst” (by Sam Shere, 1937)

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Making of “The last photo of the Titanic afloat” (by Francis Browne, 1912)

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“The last photo of the Titanic afloat” (by Francis Browne, 1912)

Making of “La cour du dumaine du Gras” (by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce, 1826)

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“La cour du dumaine du Gras” (by Joseph Nicéphore Niépce, 1826)

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Shylights: Beautiful Unfolding Kinetic Lights That Bloom like Flowers 

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Several types of flowers are known to open and close for reasons of defense or energy conservation. This evolutionary mechanism, called nyctinasty, inspired Studio DRIFT to design the Shylight, a kinetic light fixture that opens dramatically during a 30 foot (9 meter) fall. The motion mimics the same action of a blooming flower or the billowing of a parachute. A collection of Shylights were just permanently installed at Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, and you can see them in action in the video above. (via Prosthetic Knowledge)

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Glassy Pools of Used Motor Oil Reflect the Architectural Splendor of a Swiss Church 

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La Mise en Abîme (2013, used oil, metal) / All photos courtesy We Find Wildness

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Created by Swiss artist Romain Crelier, La Mise en Abîme (an idiom that communicates the same thing as “a curveball,” but means, roughly, “to have put into an abyss”) was a visually arresting artwork installed on the floor of the Bellelay Abbey in Switzerland back in 2013. The piece is comprised of two shallow pools of used motor oil that function as mirrors, reflecting the architectural details of the surrounding interior. The crude juxtaposition of recycled oil and the impeccably preserved aesthetic of a 12th century church wasn’t lost on the artist who referred to the piece as “monochrome paintings using a despised substance.” You can see more photos on We Find Wildness. (via We Find Wildness, This Isn’t Happiness, thnx Kathy!)

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Hypnotic Kinetic Sculptures by Jennifer Townley Fuse Mathematics and Art 

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Although powered by simple rotary engines, these kinetic sculptures by Netherlands-based sculptor Jennifer Townley are dizzying in complexity. Repetitive patterns twist, merge, and cascade as individually sculpted elements rotate on a single axis, an intricate fusion of art and mathematics. From Townley’s artist statement:

The works derive from her fascination with science, with an emphasis on physics, engineering and mathematics. Geometric patterns in Islamic art or mathematical drawings of Dutch artist M. C. Escher often serve as an inspiration. Images where lines and figures match each other so perfectly they could be repeated indefinitely. This infinity, regularity and obedience is what Townley also finds fascinating about mechanical machines; they are robust, strenuous and seemingly immortal. She is captivated by how a machine can convert a simple circular motion (rotary engine) into a very complicated nonlinear or chaotic movement pattern.

You can see more of her work on her website and on Vimeo. (via Prosthetic Knowledge)

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Unexpected Scenes Hidden Inside Tiny Jewelry Boxes by Talwst 

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First Flakes of Winter; Mixed Media 2010; 9″ x 2″ x 2.5″

Started From The Bottom Now We Here pt2 Mixed Media 2013 9" x 2" x 2.5"

Started From The Bottom Now We Here pt2; Mixed Media 2013; 9″ x 2″ x 2.5″

Banksy Is Your Gran Mixed Media, 3volt filament bulb 2015 2.25" x 2" x 2.5"

Banksy Is Your Gran; Mixed Media, 3volt filament bulb 2015; 2.25″ x 2″ x 2.5″

El Torero Mixed Media 2013 4" x 4" x 4.5"

El Torero; Mixed Media 2013; 4″ x 4″ x 4.5″

Summer in the Winter Mixed Media 2013 3" x 2" x 2.5"

Summer in the Winter; Mixed Media 2013; 3″ x 2″ x 2.5″

Frolic Mixed Media 2013 3" x 2" x 2.5"

Frolic; Mixed Media 2013; 3″ x 2″ x 2.5″

The Troubadour II Mixed Media 2014 1" x 1" x 1.5"

The Troubadour II; Mixed Media 2014; 1″ x 1″ x 1.5″

Der Stuhl. Die Puppe. Das Entartete. Das Genie Mixed Media 2013 2.5" x 3" x 3.25"

Der Stuhl. Die Puppe. Das Entartete. Das Genie; Mixed Media 2013; 2.5″ x 3″ x 3.25″

Ornate jewelry boxes set the stage for tiny painted scenes filled with nearly-microscopic human figurines. The boxes are meticulously crafted by Canadian-Trinidadian artist Talwst, who uses mixed media to explore the narrative of art history in combination with elements of contrasting cultures. Although his vintage boxes may cast an ancient light on the scene, the boxes encapsulate a present day cultural commentary through their arrangements.

Talwst works out of his studio in Toronto, Ontario and has a solo exhibition at the Art Gallery of Mississauga through April 12th. TALWST will also be collaborating with VICE magazine this year to produce a body of work that will appear on newsstands this September. (via BOOOOOOOM)

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An Aerial Tour of ‘Hang Son Soong,’ the Largest Cave on Earth 

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In this new 6-minute film, cave, adventure, and travel photographer Ryan Deboodt takes us on a breathtaking aerial tour of the world’s largest cave, Hang Son Doong, located in central Vietnam. Deboodt brought a drone and an array of cameras to help capture the cave system, the largest chamber of which is 5 kilometres (3.1 mi) long, 200 meters (660 ft) high and 150 meters (490 ft) wide. Despite its enormity, the cave was only discovered in 1991 by a local man, and it wasn’t even studied by scientists until about five years ago. One of the most disorienting thing about watching Deboodt’s film was my brain not comprehending the scale of what I was looking at. It’s only once you notice the ant-like people walking through some of the shots that you realize just how massive this place is. You can see more of Deboodt’s cave photography on Instagram. (via PetaPixel)

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