German photographer Frank Kunert builds miniature scenes that at first glance appear like mundane depictions of everyday domestic and urban settings. However after glancing at the photographs longer, one is able to dissect the strange anomalies found in his playgrounds, kitchens, and parks, noticing that his half pipe has the markings of a tennis court and his children’s slide leads straight onto a busy highway.
“On the surface, these photographs confront us with all of the hollow words, catchphrases and banalities we encounter in our daily lives,” says Dr. Christine Donat, who provided the text for Kunert’s online portfolio. “The stereotypical and senseless aspects of human communication cannot be unveiled more convincingly than in their literal conversion into a visual medium.”
The works are a part of Kunert’s series Photographs of Small Worlds, handcrafted models that play with the audience’s perception through the use of darkly satirical twists. Each miniature set is created over the course of several weeks to months, and are not captured until they can perfectly convey the scene without digital assistance.
Kunert’s upcoming solo exhibition at the Museum Boppard from September 10 to January 28, 2018 shares the same name as his most recent photo book, Wunderland. You can view more of his miniature works and past photo books on his website. (via Cross Connect Magazine)
Belgian stencil artist Jonathan Pauwels, or “Jaune,” creates urban interventions in his home town of Brussels, Belgium, stenciling tiny sanitation workers on pipes, door frames, and brick walls. His small-scale installations give a peak into the world of the miniature workers, one where they engage in amusing activities that seem to cause more disorder than good.
“Despite performing an important public service in garish fluorescent clothing, I observed that [sanitation workers] exist in the background of our urban environment, becoming almost invisible to the average person,” says Jaune about the series in an artist statement on his website. “It was in 2011 that I decided to free these characters from their roles by symbolically placing them in ever more absurd and whimsical scenarios in and around the city streets. Those who were supposed to keep the world tidy have become harbingers of chaos.”
You can see dozens of more pieces from Jaune’s street-based series on his Instagram and his website. (via Laughing Squid)
Photographer Derrick Lin captures the minutiae of everyday office life across landscapes of notebooks, paper clips, and coffee mugs populated with tiny figures. Working only with his iPhone, desk lighting, and a broad array of miniatures, Lin creates visual commentary on office life as well as recreations of popular artworks or scenes of escape. Many of his photos have been collected into an upcoming book titled Work, Figuratively Speaking: The Big Setbacks and Little Victories of Office Life, published this fall through Universe. See more on Instagram. (via Creators Project)
“Bird by bird I’ve come to know the earth,” said Pablo Neruda in his book Art of Birds, a quote that has since inspired artist Dina Brodsky to begin her own exploration of birds in an ongoing miniature painting project by the same name: Bird by Bird. The artist first began the project last year as a way to explore the native birds around New York city as her now 18-month-old baby napped in a stroller. The endeavor has since grown to incorporate more rare and exotic birds depicted in everything from ballpoint pen to watercolor and gouache. The bird paintings have become so popular with fans that she’s created a dedicated Instagram account to collect them all.
For their brand new advertisement, Finnish coffee roaster Paulig asked director and animator Lucas Zanotto to brew a cup of coffee from a single bean. Using a nail file to create the grounds, Zanotto then boils water over a single tea light, and finally pours the freshly brewed java one drop at a time into a thimble-sized mug. The video has a direct relationship to recently popularized miniature cooking videos on Youtube, which have produced everything from miniature deep-fried chicken to tiny shrimp tempura. You can watch more of the Helsinki-based director’s videos on his Instagram and Vimeo, and take a look at Zanotto’s miniature coffee brewing techniques above.
Working at 1:20 scale, artist Joshua Smith builds in-depth works that capture the layered existences of urban environments in cities such as Hong Kong, Sydney, and Los Angeles. His miniature buildings showcase the details and detritus left by the diverse population of each city, bringing in elements of the city’s workers, inhabitants, and street artists. These marks can be seen through heavily graffitied exteriors, and thoughtful additions like a small table on the roof of one building with takeout food from the tiny Chinese restaurant below.
Smith has been working on this series for the last two years, after stints as both a stencil artist and gallerist. Using several reference photos from a building’s actual site, he utilizes MDF, cardboard, and plastic to create the base of the work, and chooses paint and chalk pastels for the exterior’s details. Smith’s newest four-story work took him three months to complete, often working 8-16 hours a day.
The Australian artist recently exhibited his miniature buildings with Muriel Guepin Gallery at VOLTA Art Fair in New York City from March 1-5. You can see more of his work on his Instagram and Facebook. (via My Modern Met)