Craft

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Craft Design

Miniature Interior Decor Elements Crafted With Impeccable Detail by Kiyomi

December 11, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Japanese miniaturist Kiyomi imitates antiques with a stunning attention to detail, creating worn and clouded glass jars, slightly tarnished silverware, and cases packed with dozens of drawers. The talented craftswoman produces pieces for dollhouses out of paper, wire, wood, and other materials that imitate their larger companions. To give her audience a sense of scale, the artist will present her small works alongside a scaleable object, either placing a miniature chair on the seat of a regularly proportioned seat or dwarfing a set of drawers by putting it on the step of a ladder. You can see more of her antique items and delicious-looking fake pastries on her Instagram and website.  (via My Modern Met)

 

 



Craft Design

Geometric Animals Come to Life in DIY Lamp Kits by OWL

December 7, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

OWL, a Lisbon-based lamp brand founded by two architects in 2016, offers a wide range of friendly wild animals that can be turned into volumetric lamps using simple folding techniques. As you might guess, OWL offers a few different owl designs, as well as roaring hippos, curious rabbits, and proud penguins. Hugo Formiga and Teresa Almeida, the designers behind OWL, explain to Colossal that their “most recent designs have focused on large, endangered mammals. The selection tends to raise awareness about wildlife and simultaneously recreates the animals in a playful and abstract manner. The designs seem to trigger stories about themselves and are conceived as fun lighting objects with a hint of personality.”  You can find their range of DIY kits on Etsy. (via Colossal Submissions)

 

 



Art Craft

New Ceramics by Heesoo Lee Capture the Ephemeral Beauty of Seasonal Woodlands

December 7, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Artist Heesoo Lee (previously) uses multi-layered techniques to form intricate trees, complete with leaves and branches, that seem to grow out of her functional ceramic vessels. Lee’s careful use of color establishes a seasonal mood in each of her works, some evoking the warm tones and fallen leaves of autumn, while others capture the barren beauty of winter. Each woodland scene is drawn from Lee’s imagination. The artist shares that she happened upon her current style of work by chance: her background is as a painter, and she used clay more as a smooth canvas until one day she was working on a tight deadline and was attempting to repair a broken pot, which inspired her to build three-dimensionally.

Lee explains that she uses translucent porcelain because its “beautiful clarity and color and is the perfect canvas for the bright underglaze and glazes I use.” The artist begins by forming each tree individually, starting with the closest and largest trees as she builds perspective by filling in the background with progressively smaller trunks, each of which is individually formed with a clay coil. Next, for her non-wintry pieces, each leaf is individually formed and applied to create the dense foliage that further increases the sense of depth on the surface of her ceramics. After an initial firing, Lee applies colored details using painted underglaze, which must be applied without overlapping different glazes to prevent discoloration after firing. Lastly, she chooses from a range of finishing glazes, selected depending on the desired effect, like an icy blue vernal pool or clearly defined leaves.

Lee shares that she first came to the United States, looking for freedom and adventure and with little knowledge of English, first living in Berkeley, California. She started re-exploring ceramics outside of the strictures of traditional Korean ceramics, rediscovering her love of the tactile medium after studying painting in college. Lee has been a working artist alongside her partner, a fellow ceramic artist for many years, and cites her time in residence at the Archie Bray Foundation as a seminal experience:

 My work, mostly in medium-range porcelain, expanded beyond painted surfaces, my mainstay for many years. I pushed my work beyond the motifs I had been using for many years–flowers, mostly–and built larger than I had before. I was inspired by my children, the landscape of the places where I lived, and my own childhood in Korea, and reflected these themes in my work. I found that working in a place like the Bray, surrounded by other artists who created a supportive, inviting, and welcoming community, gave me the freedom to grow as an artist.

Lee lives and works in Helena, Montana, where she has a home studio and kiln. You can see more of Lee’s in-progress and finished work on Instagram, and she also keeps her Etsy shop updated with new pieces available for purchase.

 

 



Craft Science

A Scientifically Accurate Hand-Knit Sculpture of the Human Brain by Dr. Karen Norberg

December 5, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

In 2009, Psychiatrist Dr. Karen Norberg from the National Bureau of Economic Research in Cambridge, Massachusetts decided to create a fibrous doppelgänger of the human brain. Using different colored yarns she knit together the two-sided organ one and a half times its normal size, with a cerebellum and spinal cord attached at the end. Dr. Norberg told the Telegraph that the piece was a labor of love. For me, there were two humorous aspects,” she explained. “One was simply to undertake such a ridiculously complex, time consuming project for no practical reason. The second was the idea of making a somewhat mysterious and difficult object – a brain – out of a ‘cuddly,’ cheerful, familiar material like cotton yarn.”

Dr. Norberg created the individual parts of the brain, such as the brainstem and amygdala, before sewing the lightly colored pieces together in its final form. A comparison of the textile sculpture alongside scans from a real human brain can be seen in the image below. (via Women’s Art)

 

 



Art Craft Illustration

Intricate Landscapes and Tiny Houses ‘Painted’ With Multi-Colored Thread

December 3, 2018

Andrew LaSane

Utah-based artist Stephanie K. Clark (previously) considers herself a painter, but the works she creates are not made with a traditional painterly medium. Using embroidery techniques and strands of floss in a spectrum of colors, Clark paints little houses, landscapes, and other scenes that look as if they exist in the natural world and are being lit by the moon or sun.

“My process is much like any painter,” Stephanie tells Colossal. “I started out as a drawer/painter and I’ve just carried that same process into my embroidery work. I always use image and color references for my pieces. I lay out my pallet of thread/floss and I start laying the colors as if I’m painting. They eventually start blending themselves.”

Working at various scales (as small as 5″ x 5″, and as large as 6-foot-wide canvases), Clark says that the time invested depends on the size and detail of the piece, with small houses taking between 6 to 12 hours to complete, and larger landscapes requiring up to 20 hours. “I consider myself a fast worker for embroidery,” she explained, “which tends to be slow and tedious. Sometimes I have to remind myself to slow down and when I do, the pieces come out so much prettier.”

When not working on commissions, Clark’s thread paintings are inspired by her personal life: “My concepts typically go along with my life, my family, my home, and my heart.” To see more of her work, follow her on Instagram.

 

 



Art Craft Design History

Art Historical Masterworks Come Alive at Annual Halloween Parade in Kawasaki, Japan

October 31, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Image via @_ellie_

Image via @_ellie_

Recently in Kawasaki, Japan, a sextet of famous paintings marched their way through the city’s annual Halloween parade— Picasso’s “The Weeping Woman,” Vincent van Gogh’s self portrait, Johannes Vermeer’s “Girl with a Pearl Earring,” Leonardo da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa,” Edvard Munch’s “The Scream,” and of course Beast Jesus, the art world’s favorite botched masterpiece. Costume wearers presented themselves as the subjects of the famous paintings from the waist up, with fishnet stockings and heels from the waist down. The group won this year’s Pumpkin Award, taking home the grand prize and 500,000 yen, or around $4,400. You can see other prize winners of this year’s Kawasaki Halloween parade on their website, and view the paintings in action in a video by @_ellie_ below. (via Hyperallergic)

Image via @_ellie_

Image via @_ellie_

Image via @_ellie_

Image via @_ellie_

Image via @eurotwoner

Image via @eurotwoner

 

 



Craft Design

Floral Wreaths Blossom Into Bold Type

October 22, 2018

Anna Marks

In designer Olga Prinku’s floral wreaths, hundreds of dried plants and flowers are sewn into the shape of large capital letters. Flower heads spring out of the tulle as if magically sprouting from planted seeds Prinku had scattered weeks before. Although a graphic designer by trade, her project has sparked a love affair with weaving and craft, and encouraged her to experiment with several different mediums. 

“This particular technique of weaving flowers on tulle actually came to me in a dream,” Prinku tells Colossal. At first she began placing dried flowers on a sieve, which resembled the net structure of tulle. Once she began using the new medium, she looked to her garden for fresh flowers. She initially used fresh flowers for her works, but the natural objects began to shrink as they dried, which left gaps in her designs. 

“Now I use dry flowers,” she explains. “Some I buy readily dried, and some I pick from fresh and dry myself using silica gel. I also collect seed pods at the end of the season, which I use as they are.”  Prinku alters what flowers and plants she uses depending on the season. “I’m still learning a lot through experimenting about what flowers are the best – I’m basically looking for ones that are good at holding their color when dry and that have thin stems that I can use on the tulle.”

Prinku’s artistic process has fostered her appreciation of beauty and intricate details that exist in nature. “I’ve become much more observant about the plants that are growing all around where I live, and that fuels my creativity too,” she says. To learn more about Prinku’s work visit her website and her Instagram.