Mixed media and installation artist Peter McFarlane has spent his life turning found objects, computer waste and other discarded materials into sculptures, installations, and even the backdrops of paintings. Of his work McFarlane says:
To me, waste is just lack of imagination. This belief carries beyond the boundaries of my art production and permeates most aspects of my life. Most of my home and studio, and much of everything in them, is recycled. I’ve always had an epic imagination along with a driving desire to make things. Thus, used objects have pared my options down to a workable, manageable level. No object is beyond artistic merit, meaning and metaphor. So why throw it out? The materials of my work are connected intrinsically to my ideas, be they tailored beyond recognition or left as found. Each piece I make resurrects an object as an idea specific to the material and the meaning inherent in its use. The history of the object — from the manufacture to the dumpster — embellishes its contexts and the possibilities I have to manipulate them. I have often made a connection with the objects that I’ve used in my everyday life or work experience: that which I know.
You can see much more of his work over at Saatchi Online as well as in his portfolio and he recently had a show of chainsaw sculptures (!) at Pegasus Gallery in Salt Spring Island, British Columbia just last month.
I’m not sure I fully understand the meaning behind this great sculpture made of resin and recycled computer keys by Babis Cloud, but I certainly enjoy looking at it. The piece is titled Hedonism(y) Trojaner, derived from the giant mythological Trojan horse built by the Greeks that was used to sneak an elite force of soldiers into the city of Troy under the charade of presenting the city with a gift. On some level I suppose Babis is making a reference to the negative aspects of technology (viruses, irrational dependence on computers), but you can read a bit more explanation over on iGNANT. If you liked this also check out the work of Sarah Frost.
Technological Mandala No. 2 is the latest work from Italian-born, London-based artist Leonardo Ulian who carefully solders a myriad of computer components, circuitry and microchips to create these precisely symmetrical mandalas. Of his work Ulian says:
With the Technological Mandala series I combined the suggestive and spiritual meaning of the Indian Mandalas with something that has been perceived as far from that sphere of influence, technology. The search of perfection as necessity within the electronics industry has stimulated my curiosity to produce this series of pieces in order to evocate that specific need. I wanted to show what has been hidden from the eyes of the consumer, representing electronic circuits as extraordinary objects where the perfection of the design can becomes almost something ethereal. The shapes and colors of the single components intrigued me for pure aesthetic reasons with the consequent loss of the actual functionality of the component itself. My circuits/ Mandalas do not activate lights or do other complicated function, but they simply function as stimulus to produce simple questions like: what will happen if a real electric current flows through the Circuit/Mandala?
While this is certainly the largest and most complex of his mandala works he has many more smaller pieces you can see in his online gallery. Photography courtesy Gigi Giannella. (via lustik)
French firm Orée recently launched a new keyboard made entirely from a single piece of maple or walnut. Every keyboard is made to order and is crafted, polished, oil-finished and assembled by hand in their workshop in southern France. Via their website:
Orée was born from our observation that modern technology products look very much alike, are highly impersonal, made out of eco-unfriendly materials and are designed for rapid obsolescence. We set out to do something different: create lasting & personal high performance technology objects primarily made of wood, the most natural, durable and renewable material on earth. Orée is about reconciling tradition & novelty to create exceptional products through an exclusive combination of timeless woodworking techniques and cutting-edge technologies. All our products are eco-designed, crafted and hand-finished in France.
The keyboard is bluetooth enabled and retails for about $163 (€125.00). On their website you can customize Mac/Windows options, US/UK/Canadian keyboard layouts, options for keyboard fonts, and even a special message. Gorgeous. (via designboom)
UK artist Nick Gentry (previously) has been quite busy lately, completing a number of his trademark portraits painted on a canvas of old 3 1⁄2″ floppy disks. Check out the video for a montage of recent and older works.
Although this has been making the rounds here and there it’s taken me a few weeks to actually sit down and appreciate this cover of The Animals House of the Rising Sun covered entirely using audio samples recorded from legacy computer equipment and diagnostic machines. The piece uses four primary “instruments” including an HP Scanjet 3P, an Atari 800XL with an EiCO Oscilloscope as the organ, a Texas instrument Ti-99/4A with a Tektronix Oscilloscope as the guitar and a hard-drive powered by a PiC16F84A microcontroller as the bass drum and cymbal. Video and music by PURETUNE. (via dudecraft)
Update: Here’s a similar video done three years ago by James Houston, covering Radiohead. (thnx, stephen!)