Art Colossal Craft Photography

‘At the Precipice’ Emphasizes the Role of Emotion, Tactility, and the Senses in Understanding the Climate Crisis

May 23, 2023

Grace Ebert

An abstract installation with vibrant components spread across a wall

Nathalie Miebach, “Build Me a Platform”

How does it feel to inhabit an irreversibly damaged planet? An exhibition opening at the Design Museum of Chicago this summer brings together works by ten artists and collectives that answer this question through data, color, tactility, and material.

Curated by Colossal, At the Precipice: Responses to the Climate Crisis considers physical and emotional reactions in the era of environmental disaster and emphasizes how art can offer an accessible entry point into such an overwhelming and dire emergency. Varying in medium and methodology, the works included explore several of the most urgent issues affecting the world today.

The Tempestry Project returns to the early Common Era to visualize how rapidly our climate has changed in the last few centuries alone, while Luftwerk and Zaria Forman consider the impacts of a warming world on glaciers and arctic regions. Morel Doucet, Nathalie Miebach, and Migwa Nthiga are concerned with the increasing intensity of weather events and subsequent forced migration, and Jean Shin and Chris Pappan look to shifts in rivers and access to water sources. Selva Aparicio questions loss, remains, and acts of remembrance, while Redemptive Plastics offers a localized and scalable solution to waste.

At the Precipice runs from July 14 to October 30.  We’ll be announcing talks, workshops, and other programming in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for details.


Help Us Knit a Century of Chicago Weather!

As part of the exhibition, the Design Museum of Chicago has generously kickstarted a Chicago Tempestry Collection, which will use twelve knitted works to highlight changes in the local weather patterns during the last 120 years. Anyone interested in creating a tempestry—a tapestry depicting daily temperatures—to be added to the collection and displayed at the museum can purchase a kit on the project’s site.



Two ceramic busts, one covered in botanicals, the other coral and fish

Morel Doucet, “Black Maiden in Veil of Midnight” (left) and “Olokun” (right). Images courtesy of the artist and Galerie Myrtis

Ice breaks on top of a body of water

Zaria Forman, still from “Overview: 12 Miles of Lincoln Sea in the Arctic Ocean, North of Greenland”

Three warriors stand half-submerged in a lake

Migwa Nthiga, “The Warriors Of The North”

A vibrant weaving of synthetic flowers hangs in a gallery

Selva Aparicio, “Our Garden Remains”




Art Colossal

Interview: Christoph Niemann On Wit, Distilling an Idea, and How the Internet Has Made Us Better Readers

March 24, 2023

Grace Ebert

A drawing of an egg with legs and arms using a person to flip a frying pan in the air

“Turning The Table” (2022), from the book ‘Idea Diary.’ All images © Christoph Niemann, shared with permission

The act of drawing, of envisioning an idea and conveying it visually, produces the same feelings in Christoph Niemann as it did when he was a child. A wildly successful artist, author, and animator with a keen wit, Niemann reiterates in a new interview that “there is no trick” to making the creative process easier.

It’s actually kind of comforting that the reality of drawing is that there’s no secret. Most artists have doubt. I’ve always wondered: is there a secret? Is there something I don’t know? Is there a trick that people have to make less difficult? From what I’ve found, there isn’t! What I’m doing today is exactly the same thing, with different tools, with different input, but exactly the same thing that I was doing when I was 12.

In this conversation, Niemann discusses his practice and process, how he consumes news and culture, and how his openness when experiencing a new city or space has changed since the pandemic began. The conversation veers from poetry, distillation, and the purpose of art to the downsides of pitching and finally, to his profound and enduring love for the humble act of putting ink on paper.

Read the interview.


A sketch of a person in orange ink stretched out on a chair with a tangerine for a stomach

“Sunday Sketch (Tangerine)” (2014), digital



Art Colossal

Interview: Kate MccGwire On Discerning Duality, Connecting with Nature, and Making Art in the Belly of a Dutch Barge

February 13, 2023

Kate Mothes

Shown above is “EVACUATE” (2010), mixed-media installation with game feathers, 120 x 400 x 350 centimeters. Photo by Jonty Wilde. All images © Kate MccGwire, shared with permission

Growing up on the Norfolk Broads, a network of waterways in the eastern lobe of England that are mostly navigable by boat, Kate MccGwire explored the area’s wetlands and observed wildlife that would set in motion an artistic practice centered in nature. The artist is known for her site-specific installations and serpentine sculptures that incorporate thousands of bird feathers into otherworldly specimens that writhe, squish, and spill.

Often there is an obfuscation of what we know to be real and a shift that allows a sort of reverie and suspension of reality, and due to the convincing placement of the feathers over natural undulating forms, the impression that it could be real, that it could move, flow, and uncoil. —Kate MccGwire

MccGwire speaks in this interview about the tensions and dualities between containment and movement, attraction and revulsion, and nature and the self.

Read the interview.


“LIMINAL” (2019), mixed media with goose feathers in a bespoke cabinet, 76 x 57 x 50 centimeters. Photo by JP Bland




Give the Gift of a Colossal Membership and Share the Love for Art and Culture All Year Round

December 12, 2022


Still from Phoebe Wahl and Andrea Love’s stop-motion music video for Ingrid Michaelson and Zooey Deschanel's “Merry Christmas, Happy New Year" featuring a felted scene of bunnies pulling Christmas decorations out of a box.

Still from Phoebe Wahl and Andrea Love’s stop-motion music video for Ingrid Michaelson and Zooey Deschanel’s “Merry Christmas, Happy New Year”

This holiday season, give the gift of daily creative inspiration with a Colossal Membership. We love sharing the work of the most exciting artists, photographers, illustrators, and designers, and with a Colossal Membership, your loved ones can experience that same joy of discovering the world’s vast creativity all year long.

A gift membership starting at $60/year provides a host of perks:

  • Receive a monthly members-only newsletter with a sneak-peek into upcoming events, news, and giveaways.
  • Enjoy an ad-free reading experience on the site and in our newsletters.
  • Take advantage of discounts, early access, and reserved seats for workshops, studio visits, and other programming.
  • Access the growing Colossal Workshop Library to learn from artists in the Colossal community.
  • Enjoy discounts from The Hyperallergic StoreKnit-WiseThe Jaunt20×200Create! Magazine, and the Booooooom Shop.
  • Give back! One percent of membership fees are allocated to where we have purchased supplies and materials impacting thousands of students across the United States.

Shop early, and choose the date your recipient receives the gift along with a custom message. Whether you choose a supporter, patron, or lifetime membership, we can’t wait to welcome your loved ones to the Colossal community. ❤️




Join Us on Mastodon for Daily Art and Culture Updates

November 8, 2022


Colossal is now on Mastodon! We joined this growing social network as an alternative to Twitter, where we’ll remain for at least a while longer, but we hope you’ll join us on this new platform, too. We like Mastodon because it has a lot of similar features, but unlike Twitter, which is privately owned, Mastodon is open-source and ad-free. You can find us at, and remember, you can always follow the latest on Colossal through Pinterest, Tumblr, and our email newsletters.





Colossal Design

Interview: Jessica Oreck of the Office of Collecting & Design On Her Enormous Museum of Miniatures

November 4, 2022

Grace Ebert

All images © Jessica Oreck, shared with permission

In Las Vegas, the Office of Collecting & Design is a haven for the minute, the small objects that have been broken, separated from their partners, or grown obsolete and somehow found their way into the hands of Jessica Oreck. Today, the museum of miniatures houses countless objects from handmade sushi smaller than a pushpin and a teeny-tiny tube of Colgate to stone marbles and limbs detached from toy figures.

I see each object as being stitched together with the fabric of both its creator and all its previous caretakers. I try to preserve that connection while still keeping the object accessible for new interactions, new connections, even if that means the physicality of the object may degrade. The collections aren’t frozen behind glass. They are very much still a part of a living, breathing existence.—Jessica Oreck

Oreck speaks in this interview about the origin of the ever-expanding collection of miniatures, how respect and intuition ground her approach to the objects, and the mysterious story behind one of the strangest items she’s encountered.

Read the interview and see the collection.




A Colossal


Artist Cat Enamel Pins