Allan Rubin‘s aptly named series CANON presents a range of famous artists throughout history, all rendered from an amalgamation of tin cans. The works are each painted in the style of the artist’s self-portrait, such as a Post-Impressionist Vincent Van Gogh or Neoclassical Angelica Kauffmann.
The body of work grew out of the painter’s desire to work on a smaller scale in his cramped studio. The can sculptures proved to be a perfect solution, and provided an intriguing challenge for Rubin to transform flat images into three-dimensional works.
Throughout the years he has learned the best formula to build his portraits, like realizing that the shape of tomato sauce cans are well suited for heads. “Cookie tins sometimes make good torsos,” he told Hyperallergic. “Bean cans are just right for arms and necks. Sardine cans make great hands. Lids have rings embossed on them that work perfectly for ears, and also become noses that I have learned to bend, slot, and tab onto the faces.”
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Artist James Clar creates sculptural light systems that interpret the ways modern technology has altered our perception of reality and time. His multi-colored works often imitate society’s relationship to the screen, such as in his work Increasing Resolution, which shows the rapid incline of digital resolution on our TVs, computers, and phones, or his 2015 sculpture Wheeeeeeeeeeeee! which expresses the loosening of language structures due to an increasing dependence on communicating through technological devices.
“The majority of our daily experience and information comes from the artificial light sources of our screens and phones, shifting our habitat from the physical space around us to the non-physical space of online digital systems” explains Clar in an artist statement.
Clar received his masters in interactive telecommunication from New York University. He has an upcoming solo exhibition at Jane Lombard Gallery in NYC later this year. You can see more of the artist’s work on his Instagram and website.
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Banksy’s year-old project in Bethlehem, The Walled Off Hotel (previously), has just released a new set of souvenirs exclusively available in the hotel shop. The series of works, which are each hand painted by local artists, depict the West Bank barrier in a crumbling state. A hooded figure is featured beside the wall in several of the works—either contributing a fresh piece of graffiti or physically breaking through the wall with mallet in hand. Banksy views these works as anticipatory objects, pieces that might accurately depict the wall’s end.
The hotel also released a new album during last week’s Palestine Music Expo, featuring international musicians such as Brian Eno, The Black Madonna, Trio Joubran, Roisin Murphy, and Akram Abdulfattah. The work was produced by Block9 during a “Creative Retreat” at the hotel this past February, and includes seven collaborative songs inspired by Palestine’s history. The Walled Off Hotel Creative Retreat Album is now available for free on Soundcloud.
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Media artist Refik Anadol’s work Melting Memories combines data paintings, light projections, and augmented data sculptures to visibly demonstrate how the brain recalls memories. The installation was created with a custom 16 x 20 foot LED media wall and CNC milled rigid foam, and was shown earlier in 2018 at Pilevneli Gallery in Istanbul. In the work, seething swirls move across the work’s surface, resembling cresting ocean waves, blossoming flowers, and shifting sand.
To generate the data, Anadol conducted experiments at the Neuroscape Laboratory at the University of California, San Francisco. An artist statement describes the technical process: “Anadol gathers data on the neural mechanisms of cognitive control from an EEG (electroencephalogram) that measures changes in brain wave activity and provides evidence of how the brain functions over time. These data sets constitute the building blocks for the unique algorithms that the artist needs for the multi-dimensional visual structures on display.”
Anadol is a media artist and director who specializes in site-specific public art that explores the intersection of physical and digital reality. Born in Istanbul, the artist is now based in Los Angeles, where he is a visiting researcher and lecturer at UCLA’s Department of Design Media Arts. You can see more of his work on his website, as well as on Instagram, Vimeo, and Behance.
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Colossal is thrilled to announce the summer show, Inflatable: Expanding Works of Art at San Francisco’s Exploratorium, a museum dedicated to science, art and human perception. Led by our founder and editor-in-chief Christopher Jobson, Colossal has worked closely with the Exploratorium team to curate the museum’s summer 2018 exhibition. Inflatable brings together artists from around the world who work in the mediums of textiles, technology, and air.
Jason Hackenwerth (previously), renowned for his massive balloon sculptures that often simulate the universal biology of living things, will be building an inflated sculpture comprised of thousands of hand-tied balloons. Cauldron Veil will be built in front of the public at the Exploratorium in the days before the exhibition opening, and hoisted up to the ceiling where it will be suspended over visitors.
Tasmania-based artist Amanda Parer (previously) examines the relationships between humans and our natural surroundings in her large-scale white inflatable sculptures. Parer’s series, Fantastic Planet, includes two enormous humanoid figures that will be hard to miss as they tower over gallery walls.
Jimmy Kuehlne taps into interactivity, wonder, and humor in his diverse range of artworks. For Inflatable, he’ll be building a forest of glowing air-filled columns that invite museum-goers to explore his art from within. The Cleveland-based artist describes the spirit of his creations: “If I can make something that you can’t quite put in a category, then maybe there’s going to be a short circuit and you’ll have a genuine interaction.”
Inflatable visitors will also have the chance to step inside a fly’s eye as built by Rhode Island-based design collective Pneuhaus. Compound Camera is a uniquely functional geodesic dome that turns the world upside down and inside out using 109 inflated spherical camera obscuras.
Technology, electronics, and everyday materials collide in Taiwanese artist Shih Chieh Huang‘s responsive sculptures. Huang, who is based in New York, will be installing Guardian of the Disphotic, a fleet of interconnected sculptures that move and breathe in response to their environment.
The Exploratorium is a unique public learning laboratory with a mission to create inquiry-based experiences that transform learning worldwide. Centrally located on San Francisco’s waterfront Embarcadero, the Exploratorium is filled with hundreds of explore-for-yourself exhibits. These interactive stations will be on view alongside Inflatable. We’re also developing public programming and family-friendly evening events specifically for the summer show—stay tuned! Inflatable opens on May 26 and is open through September 3, 2018. Find out more and plan your visit on the Exploratorium website.
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Stephanie Kilgast takes discarded objects like tin cans, jam jars, and old cameras and embellishes them with vibrant amalgamations of coral-like growths. The artist honed her detail-oriented skills by making hyperrealistic miniature food, and she continues to use polymer clay and hand tools to craft her artworks. Mushrooms, crystals, beetles, and abstract forms sprout from the everyday objects that Kilgast sources from thrift stores and trash cans.
In an artist statement on her website, she describes her work as “an ode to life, where plants and fungi meet insects, animals and minerals. These encounters are growing in a colorful swirl of diversity, and the erratic growth develops on found objects, in a dialogue between humanity and nature.”
Kilgast, who is based in France, often documents her creative process in videos on Instagram, YouTube, and Facebook. In addition to sharing her work with her large online audience, the artist exhibits widely, and was most recently a part of the themed group show “Monochrome” at Art Number 23 in London.
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Earlier this month in the city of Valencia, Spain, the annual five-day Falles Festival hosted the construction and burning of some 400 sculptures in neighborhoods across the city amidst fireworks, parades, and enormous bubbling skillets of paella. The festival is so large it requires year-round preparation. Neighborhoods raise money to hire artisans to build each falla, and plans are made for eardrum shattering pyrotechnic displays called Mascletà that occur daily at 2pm.
For 2018, the Falles Festival invited Spanish artist Okuda San Miguel (previously) to build the Falla Mayor, the largest and last falla to be burnt during the celebration. With the help of renowned falla designers Pepe Latorre and Gabriel Sanz, as well as a monumental effort from his team at Ink and Movement, the team submitted a winning design that incorporates the artist’s trademark colorful geometric style. Okuda says the 25 meter (82 foot) piece loosely addresses the relationship between people and animals, while incorporating various symbols the local community might find familiar.
“I’m inspired most by surrealist Salvador Dali and by Bosch’s The Garden of Earthly Delights,” Okuda shared with Colossal. “I mostly describe my work as surrealism.” In an interesting twist, Dali designed and built a falla during the festival in 1954. Instead of indulging in surrealism’s darker side, Okuda’s work seems to shine a bright, happy light on the creatures and figures who populate his multicolor murals and canvases.
The festival may date back to as far as the Middle Ages when carpenters and woodworkers burnt wood scraps at the end of winter to celebrate the spring equinox, though it is now generally known as a celebration of Saint Joseph. In its present day form, the trash heaps have morphed into elaborate artworks that feature celebrities, various current events, and even abstract conceptual sculptures. Caricatures of political figures like Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, and Kim Jong-un appeared frequently this year. Two years ago the event was designated as a world heritage site by UNESCO.
During the festival Okuda also opened a large retrospective of work titled “The Multicolored Equilibrium Between Humans and Animals” at the Centre de El Carme in Valencia. The expansive exhibition gathers paintings, sculptures, photos, and video works from the last 20 years. The show is free, open to the public, and runs through May 27, 2018. You can follow Okuda on Instagram, and pickup some of his original works in the Ink and Movement Shop. Video courtesy Chop Em Down Films.
The annual Las Fallas Festival ends with a grand display of fireworks and the burning of hundreds of elaborate sculptures in neighborhoods all over Valencia. Okuda’s Falla in front of city hall was the last to go up in flames after midnight to the cheers of a huge crowd that had waited in the street for hours. Swipe for fire photo. Thanx to @diegobarrachina16 and crew for the best balcony view! @okudart @inkandmovement #streetart #fallas2018 @instagrafite #lacrema
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Editor's Picks: Illustration
Highlights below. For the full collection click here.