One of my favorite Flickr accounts to follow is Singapore-based photographer Nicky Bay (previously) who ventures into some of the most ecologically diverse (ie. creepiest and crawliest) places in the world to shoot macro photos of insects, arachnids, and fungi. Bay went on 46 different shooting excursions in 2014 and discovered creatures that seem more at home in an Avatar movie than here on Earth. He’s also begun working more with ultraviolet light that he uses to reveal the natural fluorescence of many organisms he encounters. My favorite discovery while scrolling through Bay’s 2014 photos is this species of moth that builds a cage out of its own caterpillar spines to protect itself while in a pupal stage. You can follow his day-to-day adventures on Facebook.
Created by designer ‘Istvan’ of Chaotic Atmosphere, these geometric insects are a beautiful exercise in fictional biology, code, and digital illustration. The collection of nearly 100 organisms with day/night variations is titled Biotop from Polygonia was made in Cinema 4D using random values within parameters designed by Istvan. You can see the full series over on NeonMob, a digital platform for discovering, collecting, and trading art online. (via Laughing Squid)
This fantastic set of paper insects was created from reclaimed paper by Belgium-based ad agency Soon for paper company IGEPA Benelux. The critters are part of a visual language used in a brochure advertising a new line of recycled paper. You can watch the entire Soon team toiling away on the project in this making of video. (via Lustik)
For the past few months Portuguese artist Bordalo II (previously) has been stalking the streets of Lisbon looking for heaps of trash. Using mounds of discarded plastic sheeting, old tires, shingles, and tangles of electrical cable, he carefully repositions everything before spray painting it to resemble animals and insects. You can see more from the ongoing series on Facebook.
German artist Evelyn Bracklow of La Philie has created an entire new collection of ant-covered porcelain dishes and tableware since we first shared her work here early this year. Many of the new pieces are part of a unique partnership between the artist, Rijks Museum in the Netherlands, and Etsy. The pieces are hand-painted in Bracklow’s studio, signed, numbered and fired to 160 degrees. As unsettling as having insects permanently invading your dinnerware is, I can’t help but be enchanted by how perfectly crafted they are. You can see more of Bracklow’s recent work here.
Right now, in almost every river in the world, some 12,000 different species of caddisfly larvae wriggle and crawl through sediment, twigs, and rocks in an attempt to build temporary aquatic cocoons. To do this, the small, slow-moving creatures excrete silk from salivary glands near their mouths which they use like mortar to stick together almost every available material into a cozy tube. A few weeks later a fully developed caddisfly emerges and almost immediately flies away.
After first learning about caddisflies, self-taught (and self-professed amateur) artist Hubert Duprat had a thought. Had a caddisfly ever naturally encountered a fleck of gold in a river and used it to build a home? And then one step further: what if a caddisfly had only gold and other precious stones or jewels to work with?
Trichoptères, French for the scientific name of the caddisfly, is Duprat’s answer to that question. For years the artist has been collaborating with the tiny insects, providing them small aquariums of gold, turquoise and pearls that the the larvae readily use to construct their temporary homes. Regardless of how creepy crawly you might find the insects, it’s impossible to deny the strange beauty of the final product, tiny gold sculptures held together with silk. Encountering them void of any context, one would assume they were constructed by a jeweler.
Duprat currently has a solo exhibition at the Museum of Old and New Art in Tasmania which runs through July 28th, and it should be notced thath is work with caddisflies is only one small aspect of his art practice.
North Carolina-based artist Yumi Okita creates beautiful textile sculptures of months, butterflies, and other insects with various textiles and embroidery techniques. The pieces are quite large, measuring nearly a foot wide and contain other flourishes including painting, feathers, and artificial fur. You can many of her most recent pieces here. (via the Jealous Curator)