The BioniCopter: A Robotic Dragonfly by Festo




The BioniCopter is the latest robotic marvel from German technology firm Festo, a company known for the creation of numerous devices that mimic wildlife including birds, jellyfish and penguins. Meant to mimic the motions of a dragonfly the BioniCopter is capable of flying in all directions including backward, and can also hover indefinitely in the same spot. Via Festo:

In addition to control of the shared flapping frequency and twisting of the individual wings, each of the four wings also features an amplitude controller. The tilt of the wings determines the direction of thrust. Amplitude control allows the intensity of the thrust to be regulated. When combined, the remote-controlled dragonfly can assume almost any position in space. [… ] This unique way of flying is made possible by the lightweight construction and the integration of functions: components such as sensors, actuators and mechanical components as well as open- and closed-loop control systems are installed in a very tight space and adapted to one another. With the remote-controlled dragonfly, Festo demonstrates wireless real-time communication, a continuous exchange of information, as well as the ability to combine different sensor evaluations and identify complex events and critical states.

While many other remote-controlled dragonflies exist, many of which are available commercially as toys, the BioniCopter is the first device that can mimic the function of a plane, a helicopter, and a glider all in the same device. Learn more at Festo. (via rhumboogie)

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New Portraits by Kumi Yamashita Made with Nails, Thread, and Denim







Two new portraits this morning from one of my favorite artists Kumi Yamashita (previously). The first one is part of her Constellation series titled Mana #2. The portrait is made from a single unbroken sewing thread wrapped through a dense network of galvanized nails, a process that takes several months. The second artwork, Mother #2, is part of her ongoing Warp and Weft series where Yamashita works with a panel of black denim and then meticulously cuts threads from the fabric to form an image. If you happen to be in California, both works will be in a group show from April 20th through June 1st, 2013 at Scott White Contemporary Art in La Jolla. You can also now follow the artist over on Facebook.

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DRUMS: A Ridiculous Video in Which there is Drumming


It’s Friday and I have no idea what’s going on here but I kind of love it. Shot and edited by Simon Panrucker, starring his nieces. If you liked this you will most definitely like Oona Rocks.

Update: I should have added that these videos were most likely inspired by the work of Lasse Gjertsen who seems to have removed most of his videos from YouTube but you can still see a low-res version of Hyperactive. (thnx, everyone)

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Dreamlike Split-Level Landscapes Painted by Jeremy Miranda







Artist Jeremy Miranda lives and works in Salem, Massachusetts where he works with acrylic paint to create images influenced by nature, technology, and memory. Among my favorite of his works are his split level landscapes connected by ladders that depict hidden worlds just under the surface of the ocean. Miranda has original paintings and prints available through Etsy, Enormous Tiny Art, and Sebastian Foster. (via not shaking the grass)

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Landfill Harmonic: An Upcoming Documentary About the ‘Recycled Orchestra’ in Cateura, Paraguay






Cateura, Paraguay is a small city that has grown atop a massive dump. It is regarded as one of the poorest slums in Latin America, a village where people live among a sea of garbage. Incredibly, the landfill itself is the primary form of subsistence for many residents, who pick through waste for items that can be used or sold. Prospects for most of the children born in Cateura is bleak as gangs and drugs await many of them. But then one day, something amazing happened.

A garbage picker named Nicolás Gómez (known as “Cola”) found a piece of trash that resembled a violin and brought it to musician Favio Chávez. Using other objects collected from the dump, the pair constructed a functional violin in a place where a real violin is worth more a house. Using items gleaned completely from the dump, the pair then built a cello, a flute, a drum, and suddenly had a wild idea: could a children’s orchestra be born in one of the most depressed areas in the world? As you can guess, the answer was yes.

Now a group of filmmakers, producers, and photographers are trying to tell the story of the orchestra through a documentary titled Landfill Harmonic. The orchestra seems poised to offer many of the children opportunities outside of the slum— they are already planning a multi-city tour around the U.S. The movie is currently being funded on Kickstarter and just passed the halfway mark today. Watch the video above and you can learn more over on their Facebook. Backed!

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Light Wakeboarding Photographed by Patrick Rochon






The folks over at Redbull (previously for cranberry bog wakeboarding) are currently holding a photography competition called Red Bull Illume which is billed as “the world’s premier international photography competition dedicated to the world of action and adventure sports.” One of the latest entries to the competition is this awesome set of photos captured by photographer and light painter Patrick Rochon in conjunction with Snap! Orlando who brought on a team of wakeboarders including Mike Dowdy, Adam Errington, and Dallas Friday. The trio rode special wakeboards affixed with LEDs designed by Snap! while Rochon shot from the shore. You can read more over on Redbull Illume, and for more illuminated hijinx check out L.E.D Wakeboarding by Jacob Sutton. (via we seek)

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