Tag Archives: surreal

River Stones with Pouches Unzip to Reveal Hidden Scenes and Objects 

Japanese artist Hirotoshi Ito’s sculptural works are a surreal contradiction of materials that seemingly shouldn’t exist, and yet here they are. The smooth stones of variable shape and size are each embedded with zippers that open to reveal hidden objects like collections of coins or marbles, while some of his more popular works incorporate a rather sinister toothy mouth. Ito finds the rocks in a riverbed near his home and works with the natural shape of each object to form the pouch and scene inside.

Ito had a solo show last month at Little High Gallery in Tokyo called “Mysterious Stone!” and you can see more of his ongoing stone carving work on Facebook. (via Geyser of Awesome)

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The Serendipitous Clouds and Faux Reflections of Photographer Kanghee Kim 

Photographer Kanghee Kim juxtaposes day-to-day moments to create scenes that peek into an alternate world, subtly placing faux reflections in coils of cable or in the streak of a rear windshield. The Brooklyn-based photographer’s manipulations come from the desire to manifest magical moments in the mundane, using post-production edits as an additional artistic medium within her work.

“I started to think of [my photography] as a painting and allow the post-production process to act as a kind of mark-making,” said Kanghee to i-D. “Photoshop is widely used in commercial photography to refine the details and make the images look flawless.”

Kanghee decided that she wanted to do the opposite with the tool, keeping the flaws that appeared in her images rather than editing them out. The works’ small imperfections highlight the human quality of each combined moment rather than glossing over it. You can view more of the photographer’s softly edited images and unexpected reflections on her website and Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

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New Oil Paintings That Trace Fictitious Memories by Joshua Flint 

Towards the door we never opened, oil on linen, 45″ x 28″

Joshua Flint (previously) paints scenes in relationship to the way we access old memories in our mind, blurring motions and obscuring the identities of his works’ subjects. The visual narratives are not linear, but rather create a surreal mash-up of landscapes and worlds, sourcing inspiration from digitized museum archives, vintage shops, and social media.

“The paintings fluctuate between the familiar and the unknown while simultaneously including the past and present,” said Flint in an artist statement. “By rearranging the hierarchy of elements the paintings become fictions that allow countless interpretations. Layered into works are references to liminality, ecological issues, neuroscience, psychological states, and the history of painting, among others.”

Flint has upcoming solo exhibitions at Seager / Gray Gallery in Mill Valley, California and Robert Lange Studios in Charleston, South Carolina this fall. You can see more of his oil paintings and studio sketches on his Instagram.

The World Between, oil on canvas, 48" x 48"

The World Between, oil on canvas, 48″ x 48″

The Guest, oil on wood panel, 36" x 36"

The Guest, oil on wood panel, 36″ x 36″

Carousel, oil on wood panel, 36" X 48"

Carousel, oil on wood panel, 36″ X 48″

The Volunteers, oil on wood panel, 30" x 40"

The Volunteers, oil on wood panel, 30″ x 40″

Threshold, oil on wood panel, 36" X 48"

Threshold, oil on wood panel, 36″ X 48″

The Assistant, oil on wood panel, 36" x 36"

The Assistant, oil on wood panel, 36″ x 36″

Future Present, oil on wood panel, 12" x 12"

Future Present, oil on wood panel, 12″ x 12″

The Projectionist, oil on wood panel,12" x 12"

The Projectionist, oil on wood panel,12″ x 12″

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Anatomical Cross-Sections of Human Heads Reveal a Menagerie of Found Objects 

Chicago-based artist duo Edwige Massart and Xavier Wynn (previously) sculpt cross-sections of human heads that are organized into compartments of tiny objects. The series began several years ago as an intersection of sorts involving Massart’s personal collection of found objects that she began at the age of four, and Wynn’s childhood discovery of “split body” models at Chicago’s Field Museum that inspired a lingering fascination with human anatomy. Each sculpture is given only a number (ie. Head 14) leaving the viewer to examine the compartments of objects and draw their own parallels and conclusions. You can see more recent work from the Heads series on their website. (via Colossal Submissions)

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The Playfully Surreal Photography of Ben Zank 

Brooklyn-based photographer Ben Zank has an eye for the unusual. Strange juxtapositions, awkward inconveniences, and often the ongoing struggle of life itself are all expressed through his surreal photography. Zank often portrays figures (some of which are self-portraits) as physically encumbered with faces obscured or turned away from the camera, seemingly in the throes of personal conflict. Yet despite the adversity in each photo, the element of humor seems constantly present. It’s hard not to laugh and smile at the absurd predicaments he conceives of for each shot, reminding us all to take a step back sometimes and just laugh at the ridiculousness of it all.

Zank shares his work almost exclusively through Instagram and prints of some photos are available through Opium Gallery.

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Wildly Absurd Experimental Body Animations by Esteban Diacono 

Argentinian motion graphics designer Esteban Diacono spends most of his time producing slick digital treatments for corporate clients around the world from Fox to FX and the Discovery Channel. But he also sneaks in a few hours each day to work on an ongoing series of hilarious (or completely discomforting depending on your perspective) animation experiments that he shares through his Instagram account. The floppy 3D renderings of haggard old men being shot at with donuts and imposing suited figures clad in scale-like armor are all ways for Diacono to learn new animation tools like Houdini while expressing himself creatively, free of commercial constraints.

Dianco says the experiments began about 8 months ago, inspired in part by the wildly popular mo-cap dance video produced by Method Studios. “I started doing some small tests, and decided to start uploading them to Instagram as a way of forcing myself to start and finish something,” he shares with Colossal. “Otherwise, you can work on a piece forever and then forget about it when commercial work comes and you need to put it aside. These small things are manageable, they don’t take more than a couple hours to make and that’s great for me.”

While Dianco states emphatically on his Instagram profile that he’s “definitely not an artist,” he was approached in May by ArtFutura to participate in an exhibition at Ex-Dogana in Rome that’s up through September. You can follow more of his works on Instagram.

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