Design

Mirrored Ceilings and Criss-Crossed Stairwells Give a Chinese Bookstore the Feeling of an M.C. Escher Woodcut

May 16, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Zhongshuge bookstores, designed by Shangai-based architecture firm X+Living, feature incredible rooms coveted by book and illusion lovers alike. Each location in this chain of Chinese bookstores has uniquely designed spaces with reflective elements that immerse guests in parallel environments. In the Chongqing branch, criss-crossing staircases and a mirrored ceiling double the room for an effect that seems straight out of an M.C. Escher woodcut or an infinite Indian stepwell.

In the Yangzhou location, each book-filled room also features mirrors, but many are found on the floors rather than ceiling. These glassy elements are meant to appear like mirages, a reference to the city’s canals, rivers, and lakes. You can take a quick peek inside the Yangzhou-based location in the video by Great Big Story below. To view more of the Zhongshuge libraries, visit X+Living’s website. (via Design You Trust)

 

 



Art Craft

Sharp-Edged Porcelain Vessels by Martha Pachón Rodríguez

May 15, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Ceramic artist Martha Pachón Rodríguez’s sculptural vessels juxtapose an extremely clean, refined construction with sharp repeated shapes and jarring color combinations. Using a mix of uncolored and pigmented porcelain, Rodríguez layers thin triangles or spikes that resemble quills or teeth, to frame gaping holes in her rounded vessels. In a statement on the artist’s website, she describes her sculptures as a “mixture of human eroticism with animal nature.” In addition to her sculptural body of work, Rodríguez also builds suspended installations and crafts fine jewelry as part of her ceramic practice. The artist was born and educated in Colombia, and continued her studies in Italy. Rodríguez is currently the Art Director of Faenza Art Ceramic Center in Italy. Explore more of the artist’s works on Instagram.

 

 



Art Photography

Multiverse: Hiroshi Kondo’s Dizzying Documentation of Taiwan’s Busy Streets

May 15, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Tokyo-based filmmaker Hiroshi Kondo captures the endless movement of urban environments in his fast-moving short films. Kondo often homes in on one specific element of city living, like street lights—or, in his new short film, scooter commuters. Multiverse follows riders as they move in swarms, their density highlighted through time-lapse. At certain moments, Kondo focuses on an individual rider, which emphasizes unique journeys within the teaming repetition. Multiverse’s music and sound design is by Himuro Yoshiteru. You can watch more of Kondo’s dizzying films on Vimeo. (via Colossal Submissions)

 

 



Art

Massive Cardboard Installations by Isabel and Alfredo Aquizilan Investigate Migration and Community

May 15, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Isabel and Alfredo Aquilizan work as a husband and wife team primarily in the medium of cardboard. Their soaring installations fill gallery spaces, reaching from floor to ceiling and wall to wall. The duo’s massive sculptural works are comprised of miniature homes that have been piled and stacked, creating dizzying towers of comingled landscapes. For many of their installations the artists work with students and community members to collaboratively build the cardboard structures, inviting participants to reflect on and channel their own migratory experiences. The Aquilizans moved from the Philippines to Australia in 2006, and much of their work centers around the migrant experience, and having a foot in two worlds.

A statement from NuNu Fine Art gallery in Taiwan explains, “the Aquilizans negotiate identity vis-à-vis tracing points of mobilities… Identifying with departures as a poignant tribute to all, like themselves, who have managed to make homes out of strange lands, keeping memories of the passage as the foundation of new dwellings.”

See one of the Aquilizan’s installations through May 19, 2019 in Melbourne, as part of Bruised: Art Action and Ecology in Asia at RMIT Gallery. You can get to know the artists in a 2018 interview with HAINAMANA, and explore more of their mixed media collaborative projects on Artsy.

Photo: Yoko Choy

 

 



Art Craft

Twisted and Rolled Paper Forms Three-Dimensional Surfaces Inspired by Rich Patterns From India

May 14, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Industrial designer and artist Gunjan Aylawadi (previously) forms sculptural weavings composed of hundreds of tightly rolled strips of paper. The works’ radial patterns are informed by her upbringing in India where she was constantly surrounded by the repetitive geometric patterns found in the country’s art and architectural details. These remembered patterns are abstracted in her paper-based works, which are equally directed by aesthetic and tactile memories. Aylawadi now lives and works in Sydney, Australia. You can find more of her woven series, including the presented Formed in Fantasy, on her website, Facebook, and Instagram.

 

 



Design

Air-Mountain: A Translucent Inflatable Structure Blurs the Boundary Between Interior and Exterior Spaces

May 14, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Photographs courtesy of Aether

Visitors to this year’s OCT Phoenix Flower Festival in Shenzhen, China encountered an unusual inflatable pavilion by Aether Architects. The translucent structure, called “air-mountain,” served dual functions as a protective exhibition space and a surface for people to climb up and over. Inflated hemispheres with a range of dimensions and textures were grouped together via a ribbed topography, and included air holes to allow visitors (and plants) room to breathe.

Aether was founded by architect Zelin Huang, who also has a background in fine art. His studio focuses “on the spatial creation of a connection between phenomenology and architecture, try to create a building that is not isolated from nature, but between man-made and natural, connecting man-made with nature.” (via designboom)

 

 



Art Design

Silicone Formations by Seulgi Kwon Translate Fictionalized Microscopic Organisms into Necklaces, Brooches, and Rings

May 14, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

"Sunday Morning," brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 4.7" x 4.3" x 2.9", all images as courtesy of Mobilia Gallery

“Sunday Morning,” brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 4.7″ x 4.3″ x 2.9″, all images courtesy of Mobilia Gallery

Korean jewelry maker Seulgi Kwon forms silicone into thin, translucent objects meant to be worn on the chest or finger. The glass-like shapes are surrounded by colorful thread, pigment, and paper, which imitate the appearance of microscopic organisms. “At each stage of creation, cells change in form through growth, division, and extinction, creating order and harmony within nature,” she explains in her artist statement. “Using silicone, a synthetic material that can change in texture and transparency, I express the organic movement and shape of cells with their mysterious color and constantly changing forms.”

Kwon is part of an upcoming group exhibition that will explore non-traditional materials in contemporary jewelry titled Material Revolution. The show opens May 15 and runs through June 2, 2019 at at Pistachios in Chicago. You can see more iterations of her wearable silicone sculptures on Instagram. (via Colossal Submissions)

"An Old Dancer" (2017), Silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, feather, 7.3” x 4” x 3.5”

“An Old Dancer” (2017), Silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, feather, 7.3” x 4” x 3.5”

"Two of pentacles" (2017), brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 7.5” x 4.5” x 2.75”

“Two of pentacles” (2017), brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 7.5” x 4.5” x 2.75”

"On your side" (2015), brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic 5.5” x 3.5” x 2”

“On your side” (2015), brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic 5.5” x 3.5” x 2”

"A Slow Walker," brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, paper, plastic bead, 6.6" x 8.1" x 1.5" (L) "Swing of the Night," brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, feather, 9.8" x 6.2" x 3.1" (R)

“A Slow Walker,” brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, paper, plastic bead, 6.6″ x 8.1″ x 1.5″ (L) “Swing of the Night,” brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, feather, 9.8″ x 6.2″ x 3.1″ (R)

"Forest of memory," (2017) brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, feather, 9” x 5” x 3.5”

“Forest of memory,” (2017) brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, feather, 9” x 5” x 3.5”

"The Day After," brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 5.9" x 5.5" x 2.7"

“The Day After,” brooch, silicone, pigment, thread, plastic, fabric, 5.9″ x 5.5″ x 2.7″