Photography

Time-Lapse Photographs Capture Swarms of Airplane Lights as They Streak Across the Night Sky

December 31, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Pete Mauney has been interested in observing the dizzying patterns of planes at night since high school. As a teenager the photographer would watch airplanes has they circled Manhattan, imagining their trajectories and how they might intersect. Although he has worked with night imaging for the few decades since, it wasn’t until he began to photograph fireflies that the idea to return to his initial inspiration struck. As he practiced and improved his techniques for long exposure and editing, he realized he could make similar images of the swarms of airplanes that were circling large cities, rather than his backyard.

“Like the fireflies, airplanes are highly engineered systems that do the same thing reliably over and over again,” Mauney tells Colossal. “The chaos and form in the images come from them not happening in the same spot, but maybe a bit more over there, introducing difference. Each image is a mystery and I find the reveal moment about as magical as one can get within the otherwise non-magical world of digital photography.”

His photographs capture the streaks of light that blaze across the night sky when slowed down during a long exposure, showcasing prismatic flashes combined with starscapes and positioned above calm environments. Mauney will have an upcoming solo exhibition at the Kleinert/James Center for the Arts (Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild) in Woodstock, New York from July 5, 2019 to August 18, 2019. You can see more of Mauney’s images, of both flying planes and darting insects, on his website and Instagram. (via Kottke)

 

 



Amazing Photography Science

Winter’s Magic: Dramatic Ice Crystals Formed in Ephemeral Spheres

December 31, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

A simple mixture of corn syrup, dish detergent, and water creates magical winter snow globes when blown into bubbles on snow. Frosty shapes dance across the fragile transparent bubbles, starting out as distant stars that expand and almost tesselate to form a continuous surface pattern. The straightforward yet delicate DIY project is dramatically documented by Ontario-based nature photographer Don Komarechka in his short film “Winter’s Magic.” Komarechka’s video features the best clips from over 400 takes that were originally shot for the BBC’s Forces of Nature documentary series. The artist works in macro, landscape, and nature photography. He also teaches workshops, and sells prints of his work, from snowflakes to spiders, on his website. For the curious, Komarechka explains the process and the technical aspects of the project on YouTube. (via The Kid Should See This)

 

 



Art

Kirie Octopus Cut From a Single Piece of Paper by Masayo Fukuda

December 28, 2018

Johnny Waldman

Kirie (切り絵, literally ‘cut picture’) is the Japanese art of paper-cutting. Variations of kirie can be found in cultures around the world but the Japanese version is said to be derived from religious ceremonies and can be traced back to around the AD 700s. In its most conventional form, negative space is cut from a single sheet of white paper and then contrasted against a black background to reveal a rendering. Veteran kirie artist Masayo Fukuda (previously) has been practicing the art form for 25 years and recently revealed what she says is her greatest masterpiece of 2018.

Although the intricate piece looks like several layers overlapped, Fukuda stayed true to the conventional form, using only a single sheet of paper to render her detailed depiction of an octopus. The level of detail at times even looks like a fine ballpoint pen drawing. But a closer look confirms indeed that each and every detail is carefully made from cut-out negative space in the white paper.

If you’re interested in Fukuda’s work, she’ll be showcasing her kirie in a joint exhibition planned for next year. She’ll be showing her work along with fellow kirie artist Jun at Miraie Gallery in Osaka from April 24 – April 30, 2019. (Syndicated from Spoon & Tamago)

 

 



Art

Watch a Conservator Delicately Remove Murky Varnish and a Warped Wooden Panel From an Aging Painting

December 28, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Julian Baumgartner, of Baumgartner Fine Art Restoration in Chicago, condenses over 40 hours of delicate swiping, scraping, and paint retouching into a 11.5 minute narrated video of a recent conservation project. Baumgartner walks the audience through his restoration of The Assassination of Archimedes, which involved cleaning a darkened varnish from the surface of the piece, removing the work from its original wooden panel using both modern and traditional techniques, mounting the thin paper-based painting to acid-free board, and finally touching up small areas that had become worn over the years. You can watch the entire process in the video above, and learn about Baumgartner’s other conservation projects on Instagram and Youtube.

 

 



Art

Google Builds a Digital Reproduction of the National Museum of Brazil After its Tragic Destruction

December 28, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

The 13-meter long Titanosaurus

The 13-meter long Titanosaurus

Following a devastating fire this September, Google has released a virtual tour of the National Museum of Brazil, the country’s oldest natural history institution. The digital recreation is presented by Museum View (which uses the same functionality as Google Street View), and allows visitors to explore the institution’s key artifacts as they were displayed before this year’s tragic destruction. The online tour includes a view of Luzia (the oldest skeleton found in the Americas), 3000-year-old Brazilian ceramics, a collection of butterflies and moths currently under threat for extinction, and the museum’s mummified cat.

It’s estimated that the museum lost up to 92.5 percent of its 20 million artifacts in the fire—global relics, pottery, and animal specimens that had been collected by the institution since its founding in 1818. Its digital remains are the result of a collaborative project between the museum and Google, which began in 2016. Despite the horrific loss, the museum’s director Alexander Kellner expresses strength and hope for the institution’s future in a letter in Google’s Arts and Culture section. “It is important to stress that the National Museum, despite having lost a significant part of its collection, has not lost its ability to generate knowledge!”

You can view the full digital archive of the museum in Google’s virtual tour, and learn more about the museum’s history in Kellner’s full letter.  You can view a preview of the collections’s highlights in the video below. (via Artsy)

3000-year-old Brazilian ceramics

3000-year-old Brazilian ceramics

The virtual tour of the National Museum of Brazil on Google.

The virtual tour of the National Museum of Brazil on Google.

One of the largest meteorites in the world

One of the largest meteorites in the world

 

 



Photography

Black and White Photographs Capture the Striking Appearance of Bare Trees Against Snow-Filled Landscapes

December 27, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

All photos by Pierre Pellegrini, Switzerland; Courtesy of the Galleria Valeria Bella Stampe, Milan, Italy.

All photos by Pierre Pellegrini, Switzerland; Courtesy of the Galleria Valeria Bella Stampe, Milan, Italy.

Swiss photographer Pierre Pellegrini is drawn to remote landscapes dotted by tree groves, snow-topped piers, and structures that have fallen into a state of disarray. Long exposure photographs force Pellegrini to sit quietly with these scenes, meditatively taking in the high contrast landscape as his camera processes the deep blacks and brilliant whites that emerge in the dead of winter. “I simply photograph what I feel, and am always looking for moments and situations where everything is in its place,” he explains to Colossal. “I try to find a sort of harmony between what I see and what I feel.” You can see more of his square format black and white photographs on Instagram.

 

 



Art

Elaborately Collaged Newspapers by Myriam Dion Transform Current Events into New Visual Narratives

December 27, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

In the patient hands of Myriam Dion (previously), daily newspapers become timeless works of art. The artist reads each newspaper she transforms from cover to cover before envisioning an entirely new visual identity for the inexpensive yet information-dense material. Using a combination of collage, X-ACTO knife cutting, gilding, and painting, Dion forms intricate patterns, often adorning and emphasizing a single image across the broadsheet.

“By crafting thoughtful mosaics out of the world events, I question our appetite for sound-bite news and sensational art, showing the quiet power of a patient hand and an inquisitive eye,” she explains in an interview with Huffington Post. “I am creating a new newspaper that can be interpreted, that encourages people to think more deeply about the news that we consume too easily.”

In addition to working with current events, Dion also engages vintage printed materials, like a 1953 issue of The Gazette that lauds a young Queen Elizabeth, and fact sheets from mid-century beauty pageant contestants. The artist is based in Montreal, Quebec, where she received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Quebec. Dion is represented by Division Gallery, and her work will be part of the group exhibition “Pushing Paper” at Museum London in London, Ontario from January 26 to May 12, 2019. You can see more of her work on her website.