All photos © Brad Wilson
From lumbering African elephants to diminutive cockatoos, fine art photographer Brad Wilson appears to look into the soul of unusual animals from the far reaches of the planet, isolating each bird, mammal, or reptile against a deep black backdrop. The images are part of the Santa Fe-based photographer’s ongoing Affinity series that explores human’s relationship with animals, both positive and negative, while highlighting the fragility of each subject with the aid of soft studio lighting. From his artist statement:
In the midst of our modern human civilization with all its technological complexities, animals still remain stark symbols of a simpler life and a wilderness lost. Perhaps these images can stand as a testament to this other fading world, and remind us, despite the pronounced feeling of isolation that too often characterizes our contemporary existence, that we are not alone, we are not separate – we are part of a beautifully rich and interconnected diversity of life.
Wilson is represented by PhotoEye Gallery, and you can see more of his work on Instagram and in the 2014 book Wild Life. (via Colossal Submissions)
Argentina-based toy designer Mat Random has designed a new geometric wood figure as a follow-up to his previous piece The Feline, another posable toy that he has named The Simian. Due to similarly placed joints for the animals’ legs and head, parts can be swapped between the two breeds to create an entirely new hybridized creature. Each low poly work can also be posed on two or four legs by maneuvering the object’s nine components, adding a puzzle-like quality to the wooden toys. You can see more of Random’s designs on his website and Behance.
Working with a mixture of cold porcelain and polymer atop a metal wire armature, artist Ellen Jewett (previously) creates wildly intricate sculptures of animals covered in a tangle of surreal embellishments. The artist describes her works as “anthrozoology meets psychoanalysis,” where tiny clues left in the feathers, fur, and tentacles of each piece lead to a greater story of its meaning. From her artist statement:
Each detail, down to the finest filigree, is free-modeled by hand. Within each piece precision is balanced by chaos. The overarching aesthetic knocks on the door of realism, yet the hand of the artist is never intentionally erased; brush strokes and fingerprints abound. Even the narratives themselves harbor a degree of anarchy as they are rarely formally structured. Rather, I seek to achieve flow states while working to create a fluid progression of unconscious imagery.
Jewett most recently exhibited at Modern Eden Gallery in San Francisco for a group show titled Hindsight, and just wrapped up work on a body of 10 new artworks. You can see some great behind-the-scenes process photos on Instagram.
Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman (who previously produced this oversized bunny in Taiwan) has unveiled his newest large-scale animal design, this time with the function of a playscape for Vanke Group's One City development in the centre of Yantian, Shenzhen. The playground is designed within the eight legs and head of an octopus, a piece that is named after the mythological sea creature Kracken despite its friendly appearance.
The octopus was designed alongside the team at UAP, which helped Hofman bring his imaginative work to life, and plays off of the history of the area which previously housed a battleship in its harbor. The Kracken is now docked as a place for imaginative play, rather than attacking other sailing vessels at sea. (via Designboom)
Indonesia-based watercolor artist Elicia Edijanto (previously here and here) depicts loving relationships between wildlife and children set against atmospheric backdrops painted in black watercolor. “My subject are often children and animal because they are honest, sincere, unprejudiced and unpretentious,” shares Edijanto. “They give me so much inspiration for [a] particular mood or atmosphere, such as tranquility, solemnity, and also wilderness and freedom, which I put on my paintings.” Seen here are a number of recent paintings from the last year or so, some of which are available as prints and originals via her website. You can follow her works in progress on Instagram.
Photographer Zack Seckler's latest series took him 2,000 miles through South Africa, each piece shot from the passenger seat of a two-seater sport plane. The works feature animal tracks and shadows as compositional elements, capturing herds of flamingos, gemsbok, and even a solo turtle resting in the dazzling blue water.
“From elevations between 50 and 500 feet, the landscape hovers on the line between things looking very real and recognizable and being more abstract,” said Seckler. “That’s what really draws me in—the line between reality and abstraction.”
Seckler’s aerial photographs will be exhibited in a solo show of his work titled Zack Seckler: South Africa at ClampArt in New York City opening April 13. You can see more of his work (including this series of horse portraits) on his Instagram and Facebook, and a behind-the-scenes video of the week-long journey below. (via Colossal Submissions)