Tag Archives: books

This Book Is a Camera: A Functioning Pinhole Camera Inside a Pop-Up Book 


Artist and designer Kelli Anderson just released her latest book This Book is a Camera, a pop-up book that turns into a fully functional pinhole camera. The book acts as a simple educational tool to help explain how photography worked before we all had camera phones in our pockets. Anderson points out that making a simple camera obscura really isn’t too difficult and provides instructions on how you can make one yourself.

This Book is a Camera comes complete with a starter pack of B/W Ilford photo paper and instructions on how to use the camera to take photos. You’ll still need to pick up some developer fluid and have a dark room to develop photos in. Stay tuned for Anderson’s forthcoming This Book is a Planetarium from Chronicle Books. (via Quipsologies)


Example photograph taken with This Book is a Camera


Example photograph taken with This Book is a Camera

See related posts on Colossal about , , .

Nine Artist-Designed Miniature Book Sharing Libraries Appear in Indianapolis 

Nautilus, 2015, Katie Hudnall. Plywood, reclaimed wood, wood, fasteners & hardware, plexiglass, paint, ink, dye, lacquer, wax with two ink on paper drawings framed in wood by the artist.

Nautilus, side view.

Engaging new audiences and attracting people to libraries in 2015 can be tough, but some libraries are up to the challenge. As a way to simultaneously improve literacy and foster an appreciation for local artists, the Indianapolis Public Library and artist Rachel M. Simon conceived the Public Collection, an endeavor to create nine artist-desiged miniature libraries filled with free books.

While the idea of free sharing libraries in urban locations isn’t new (we’ve mentioned several different projects here on Colossal over the years), this project seems particularly ambitious and original by highlighting the sculptural works of Indiana artists and by providing a diverse selection of reading material free to the public.

Perhaps the most ambitious design was built by artist Brian McCutcheon. Titled ‘Monument,’ the five pillar library supports a physical construction of the famous Mark Twain quote: “A public library is the most enduring of memorials, the trustiest monument for the preservation of an event or a name or an affection; for it, and it only, is respected by wars and revolutions, and survives them.” The base of each pillar contains a circular shelf where passersby can take and leave books as they wish.

Our personal favorite though is ‘Nautilus,’ a spiral-shaped shelf and reading bench built from reclaimed wood by Katie Hudnall. She says “the body of this piece is loosely derived from the image of a boat on water and is designed to remind the viewer that books (and education in general) can be a form of transportation.”

You can see all of the new Public Collection sharing library designs on-site at the Indianapolis Public Library. (via GOOD)

Monument, 2015, Brian McCutcheon. Steel, aluminum, polycarbonate, fiberglass composite, paint.

Monument, alternate view.

Harvesting Knowledge, 2015, Brose Partington. Steel, Aluminum, Polycarbonate, Stepper Motor, Controller.

Topiary, 2015, Eric Nordgulen. Painted steel, acrylic plastic.

Table of Contents, 2015, Stuart Hyatt & S + Ca. Reclaimed wood, electronics.

See related posts on Colossal about , , , , .

Spooky New Stuff in the Colossal Shop 


We’ve added a number of creepy things in the Colossal Shop this month for Halloween. Paper Dandy’s newest DIY paper kirigami (fold & cut) book, Horrorgami, featuring 20 sinister scenes inspired by haunted houses and horror films. Take a sip from seven different Creature Cups that reveal critters lurking in your morning brew by Yumi Yumi. Lastly, some edible Chocolate Graffiti bars from UNELEFANTE. See more in our Halloween collection.






A New Book Celebrates the 200 Most Beautiful and Innovative Cabins Ever Designed 


Built as retreats for solitude and reflection, cabins are typically found in remote areas, tucked into the forest-filled corners of civilization. Due to their remote nature, they are often secreted from the public eye, unless you know the right path to explore. However, as a group of friends (including co-founder of Vimeo, Zach Klein) began to collect inspiration for cabin building projects, they discovered a vast array of outdoor structures and tree-houses with unique architecture on the backroads of America and around the world. They quickly began to document their discoveries online, and the Cabin Porn site was born.

Cabin Porn grew over the course of six years to amass a following of over 350,000 on Tumblr and became a visual bastion for architects, camping aficionados, and anyone craving an escape with a collection of over 12,000 cabin designs. The site has now been transformed into a printed book by the same name, Cabin Porn, a collection that adds narrative to the spaces first documented online to include interior photography, new homes, and advice from cabin makers that touch on subjects from how to live underground to crafting an off-grid bunkhouse.

The book narrows down its sprawling inspiration to just 200 cabins and hopes to not only present the aesthetic of these cabins, but the feel they elicit in their construction. “Inside each of us is a home ready to be built,” says the book’s website. “It takes a supply of ambition and materials to construct a cabin, but the reward is handsome: a shelter for yourself somewhere quiet, and a place to offer warm hospitality to friends.”

Cabin Porn can now be found on Amazon. Take a peek inside the book, and watch a lovely trailer below.









See related posts on Colossal about , , , .

Books and Stones Embedded with Sleek Layers of Laminate Glass by Ramon Todo 


Splitting his time between Kanagawa, Japan and Dusseldorf, Germany, artist Ramon Todo (previously) is known for his small sculptures of rocks and books embedded with polished layers of glass. Todo’s decision to seamlessly introduce disparate materials into a single object creates an unusual intention, as if these objects have always existed this way. The random pieces of obsidian, fossils, volcanic basalt, and old books are suddenly redefined, or as Beautiful/Decay’s Genista Jurgens puts it: “By inserting something alien into these pieces, Todo is effectively rewriting their history, and the place that these objects hold in the world.”

Todo will have a number of new pieces on view with MA2 Gallery at EXPO CHICAGO starting next week. He also has a number of atworks available through Artsy and you can flip through additional glass books clicking the small arrows on MA2 Gallery’s website.











See related posts on Colossal about , , , .

The World’s Oldest Multicolored Printed Book Has Been Opened and Digitized for the First Time 

All images courtesy Cambridge University Library

All images courtesy of Cambridge University Library

The earliest example of multicolor printing is now available for the public eye, digitally available through Cambridge University Library’s Digital Library site. The 17th century book, Manual of Calligraphy and Painting (Shi zhu zhai shu hua pu), is so fragile that it was previously forbidden to be opened, its contents a total mystery before its recent digitization.

The book was created in 1633 by Ten Bamboo Studio and is the earliest known example of polychrome xylography, invented by Hu Zhengyan. The technique, also referred to as douban, uses several printing blocks applied in succession with different inks to achieve the appearance of a hand-painted watercolor. The Cambridge site explains that the although the skill required to achieve such douban prints is admirable, the gradations of color within the book are what led to its reputation as “perhaps the most beautiful set of prints ever made.”

The manual contains eight categories showcasing birds, plumbs, orchids, bamboos, fruit, stones, ink drawings and miscellany. All of these sections of the manual are contained in the original “butterfly binding,” and has been identified to be the finest copy in the original binding by a leading scholar.

In addition to Shi zhu zhai shu hua pu, the library has also digitized other selections from its Chinese collections including the oracle bones (the earliest surviving examples of Chinese writing anywhere in the world), a Buddhist text dated between 1127 and 1175, and a 14th century banknote that threatens forgers with decapitation. (via Hyperallergic)













See related posts on Colossal about , , , , .

Remake: Master Works of Art Reimagined, a New Book by Jeff Hamada 

Salvador Dali, "The Ship," 1942-43, watercolor on paper, remake by Justin Nunnink

Salvador Dali, “The Ship,” 1942-43, watercolor on paper, remake by Justin Nunnink


Dante Gabriel Rossetti, “The Day Dream,” 1880, oil on canvas, remake by Tania Brassesco and Lazlo Passi Norberto

Four years ago, Booooooom creator Jeff Hamada asked the internet to join in on an art challenge to recreate their favorite old master paintings as contemporary photographs. The Remake Project sparked many professional and amateur artists to create elaborate sets, paint their bodies, paint their friends’ bodies, and take their own shot at works by artists from Dali to Magritte. This collection of original paintings and their contemporary counterparts has now taken the form of a book released through Chronicle Books titled Remake: Master Works of Art Reimagined.

The book features side-by-side page layouts of a selection of works from the original contest, displaying the photographic re-interpretations next to their old-world inspiration. Photographs range from the strikingly similar to loose interpretations, a grand spectrum of re-creations represented from the project’s open call. Remake: Master Works of Art Reimagined is now available in the Colossal Shop.

Rene Magritte, "The Lovers," 1928, oil on canvas, remake by Linda Cieniawska

Rene Magritte, “The Lovers,” 1928, oil on canvas, remake by Linda Cieniawska

Ramon Casas i Carbo, "After the Ball," 1895, oil on canvas, remake by Tania Brassesco and Lazlo Passi Norberto

Ramon Casas i Carbo, “After the Ball,” 1895, oil on canvas, remake by Tania Brassesco and Lazlo Passi Norberto

Jacques Louis David, "The Death of Marat," 1793, oil on canvas, remake by Adrianne Adelle

Jacques Louis David, “The Death of Marat,” 1793, oil on canvas, remake by Adrianne Adelle

Edward Hopper, "Nighthawks," 1942, oil on canvas, remake by Bastian Vice and Jiji Seabird

Edward Hopper, “Nighthawks,” 1942, oil on canvas, remake by Bastian Vice and Jiji Seabird


See related posts on Colossal about , , .

Page 1 of 21