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.

 

 



Art

Dutch Artists Transform a Utrecht Apartment Building into a Tri-Level Trompe L’Oeil Bookcase

April 8, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Dutch street artists Jan Is De Man and Deef Feed recently painted a literary trompe l’oeil mural on an apartment building in Utrecht, Netherlands. The pair turned the side of the three-story building into a multi-level bookshelf packed with a selection of their favorite books from their own collections, in addition to a few made-up titles featuring their own names. Another XXXL bookshelf exists in Kansas City, Missouri on the side of a parking garage belonging to the central branch of the city’s public library. You can see more of Jan Is De Man’s artwork on his website, and Deef Feed’s paintings on Facebook. (via Laughing Squid)

   

 

 



Art Photography

Black Bodies Painted and Photographed Like the Cosmos by Mikael Owunna

April 7, 2019

Andrew LaSane

Infinite Essence: “James” (2018) All images courtesy of Mikael Owunna

Mikael Chukwuma Owunna, a queer Nigerian-Swedish artist raised in Pittsburgh, has spent the past two and a half years photographing Black men and women for a series titled Infinite Essence. Hand-painted using fluorescent paints and photographed in complete darkness, Owunna’s subjects are illuminated by a flash outfitted with a UV filter, which turns their nude bodies into glowing celestial figures.

Owunna tells Colossal that the series was his response to the frequent images and videos of Black people being killed by those sworn to protect them: the police. The photographer’s friends, family members, dancers, and one person he connected with on Instagram serve as models for the project, which is named after an idea from his Igbo heritage. “All of our individual spirits are just one ray of the infinite essence of the sun,” Owunna explains. “By transcending the visible spectrum, I work to illuminate a world beyond our visible structures of racism, sexism, homophobia and transphobia where the black body is free.”

Infinite Essence: “Uche” (2019)

Having struggled with his own body image (and with his identity as a gay African man, which has inspired his previous work), Owunna says that the response to the project has been powerful, both from the public and from the models. “One of the models, Emem, broke down in tears looking at their pictures saying that they had always dreamed of seeing their body adorned with stars and that these images were beyond their wildest imagination,” he said. “They then told me – ‘every black person deserves to see themselves in this way’ and how the experience was life-altering for them.”

After seeing Owunna’s work via an NPR feature, a 60-year-old Black woman told the photographer, “I’ve hated my body all my life, but–for a glorious instant–that photo made me feel good about it.”

To see more of Mikael Owunna’s work and to be informed about his upcoming lectures and exhibitions, follow the artist on Instagram and Twitter.

Infinite Essence: “Sam” (2018)

Infinite Essence: “Sam” (2018)

Infinite Essence: “Sam” (2018)

Infinite Essence: “Sam” (2018)

Infinite Essence: “Kinya” (2017)

Infinite Essence: “Emem” (2018)

Infinite Essence: “Emem” (2018)

 

 



Art Photography

Abstract Interiors Revealed in Golf Ball Cross-Section Photography by James Friedman

April 6, 2019

Andrew LaSane

Images courtesy of James Friedman

After viewing a display at a golf trade equipment show, Ohio-based photographer James Friedman was inspired to create an abstract series that focuses on the internal structures of standard size golf balls. The enlarged prints of chipped, broken, and sliced balls reveal complex and colorful cores that contrast the hard, white uniformity of their exteriors.

Friedman varies the cutting style from ball to ball, with some cleanly sliced into perfect halves and others roughly carved down to their rubber, resin, and metal centers. The abstract textures they form is both a result of their construction and a result of the artistic process. “For some viewers, my photographs from this series, titled Interior Design, allude to celestial bodies and the sublime,” he wrote in a statement on his website. “For me, their serendipitous structural exquisiteness and their subtle and passionate arrays of colors have inspired new exploration in my photography.”

To see more of James Friedman’s work, visit the photographer’s official website and Instagram.

 

 



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

Antique Lace and Handkerchiefs Add Detail to Embroideries of Female Icons by Lily Bloomwood

April 5, 2019

Kate Sierzputowski

Portrait of Dorothy Gish

Self-taught artist Lily Bloomwood utilizes bits of antique lace, handkerchiefs, and delicate pieces of old knitting as the starting point for her embroidered portraits of female figures. Many of the works are inspired by women of the silent movie era such as the Canadian born actress and producer Mary Pickford or Olive Thomas, who is regarded as the very first “flapper.” Bloomwood is also inspired by relatively unknown medieval heroines, women she chooses to immortalize in her embroidered canvases. You can see more of the London-based artist’s work on Behance, and buy her work on Etsy. (via Colossal Submissions)

Portrait of Maude Fealy

Portrait of Maude Fealy

Portrait of Maude Fealy

Portrait of Maude Fealy

Portrait of Mary Pickford

Portrait of Mary Pickford

Portrait of Marion Davis

Portrait of Marion Davis

Portrait of Maude Adams

Portrait of Maude Adams

Portrait of Lillian Gish

Portrait of Lillian Gish

Portrait of Lillian Gish

Portrait of Lillian Gish

Portrait of Mary Pickford

Portrait of Mary Pickford

Portrait of Camilla Horn

Portrait of Camilla Horn

Portrait of Olive Thomas

Portrait of Olive Thomas

 

 



Art

Prismatic Murals by Alberonero Use Carefully Calculated Colors to Form Dynamic Compositions

April 5, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Italian artist Alberonero uses carefully calculated fields of color to form prismatic murals on walls around the world. The artist places subtly shifting tones side by side, which creates a sense of movement as warm-hued chevrons push into cool blues and greens, and square blocks of color seem to tumble in all directions. In addition to his painted outdoor murals, Alberonero also works in tile, and creates a variety of wall-hung work. You can see more of his brightly hued pixelated pieces on Instagram and Facebook. (via PLAIN Magazine)