Design

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Art Design

Dimensions Blur in Aakash Nihalani’s Minimalist Optical Illusions

April 8, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Aakash Nihalani (previously) is known for his illusionist interventions that push the boundaries between two and three dimensions. Though he started off using using tape to form ephemeral installations, in the last few years Nihalani has moved into more permanent territory, working with wood and metal to form free-standing and wall-mounted sculptures. Throughout his practice, the artist works with simple geometric shapes and minimal black and white color palettes accented with neon. Nihalani, a Queens, New York native, graduated from New York University’s Steinhardt School in 2008. Discover more of his mind-bending installations on Instagram.

 

 

 



Art Craft Design

Elaborate Historical Wigs Formed From Copper Wire by Bespoke Sculptor Yasemen Hussein

April 8, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Mixed media bespoke sculptor Yasemen Hussein explains that her art career was originally pointed in the direction of glass, but she found her passion for metalwork while working toward an MFA at Illinois State University. Now well established in her metal practice, Hussein uses copper electrical cable to form elaborate and sinuously lifelike hairdos. The video below, from London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, takes a look inside Hussein’s studio as she created wigs used by the V&A for their exhibit Opera: Passion, Power and Politics.

Hussein works in a coverted stable house in south London, where she manipulates the thin metal cables to simulate elaborate styles ranging from carefully coiled curls to the sweeping fan-like shapes of a geisha’s coif. Rather than creating exact replicas of realistic hair in every wig, Hussein incorporates artistic license to suggest the volume and gesture of each historical look.

In addition to her dramatic wigs, Hussein also creates geometric sculptural installations and delicate copper feathers. You can explore more of the sculptor’s work on her website.

 

 



Design Photography

Dysfunctional Household Objects and Fabricated Flowers Cleverly Created by PUTPUT

April 5, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Copenhagen-based studio PUTPUT (previously) creates visual puns and quirky tools in their juxtaposition-filled photographs. From salami sunglasses to a chair made of flaming birthday candles, PUTPUT has a “shared and deeply rooted fascination with metaphysical relationships connected to everyday objects”, according to an artist statement on their website. An ongoing series is the studio’s Fabricated Flowers, where plastic and fabric household supplies like garden gloves, shower loofahs, and dish scrubbers stand in for the color blossoms of potted plants. You can see more from PUTPUT on Instagram.

 

 



Craft Design

Playful Paper Masks by Lobulo Studio for Barcelona’s Grec Festival

April 4, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

For the 2018 marketing of Barcelona’s long-running Grec Festival, which includes dance, theater, circus, and music, the London-based Lobulo Studio was tapped to create a series of unusual paper masks. Using the prompt “new species,” Lobulo explains on their website that they were “playing with the concept of new rare species that nobody has seen before” in order to “bring color, joy, and readiness to discover”. Each mask conveys a unique persona: a four-eyed character’s mouth is open in awe, while drops of blue water-like shapes convey a fluid suit of armor. You can see more of Lobulo’s paper creations, including a Berlin feast and an eerie church, on Instagram and Behance. (via PLAIN Magazine)

 

 



Craft Design

A Topographic Table Presents a Sculptural Interpretation of Yosemite Valley in Blue, Yellow, and Gray

April 3, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

All images by Bang Bang Photography

Colorado-based company Beatnik Prints, owned by Christopher Warren, creates mountainous sculptures from multi-colored laser cut matte board. Segments are stacked and glued into dizzying forms that represent classic areas of the American west such as Devils Tower National Monument, Longs Peak, and Yosemite Valley. The latter is the subject of Warren’s latest work—a 3 x 4 x 2 foot wooden table with a tiny peephole that mimics “Tunnel View,” a popular outlook of the landmark from State Route 41. You can see more of Warren’s topographic designs including clothing, murals, and other two-dimensional works on the Beatnik Prints website and Instagram. (via Colossal Submissions)

All images by Bang Bang Photography

 

 



Craft Design

Subverted Consumer Goods Become Wearable New Apparel

April 1, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

During the weekday, Nicole McLaughlin works as a graphic designer at Reebok. But after hours her relationship to branded apparel and personal accessories takes a different creative turn. McLaughlin uses a wide variety of recognizable consumer goods to form totally new products. Often focusing on footwear, McLaughlin has formed slip-ons out of tennis balls and Levi’s waistband patches, and sandals from eBay packaging tape and IKEA bag handles. Additional creations range from an umbrella of The North Face puffy coats to foldable chairs comprised of athlete’s Gatorade bottles and foam sports fan hands.

The artist chops up and subverts the original functionality of these recognizable products and brands, but also is always careful to maintain—and often repeat—visible logos while she gives each item a new meaning and use. McLaughlin documents her creations in a closely cropped, plain manner that calls to mind images cataloged for an anthropological study. You can see more of her fashion interventions on Instagram, and keep an eye on her online store for functional pieces, all of which are currently sold out.

 

 



Design

R2-D2 Appears to Sit on a German Hillside Thanks to a University Observatory’s Star Wars-Inspired Makeover

April 1, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Sci-fi superfan Hubert Zitt has given the Zweibrücken Observatory of the Natural Science Association a pop culture-inspired makeover. The paint job, completed in fall 2018, replicates R2-D2’s signature blue and white markings on the already perfectly droid-shaped building. The observatory has become a destination for Star Wars fans who trek up the hill—sometimes in costume—to pay homage and take a photo with the larger than life R2-D2. Zitt, a sci-fi enthusiast, is known for his writing and lecturing on Star Trek in addition to his 20 year professorship in computer science and engineering at the University of Applied Sciences in Zweibrücken. (via My Modern Met)