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Photography

Precise Compositions by Daniel Rueda and Anna Devís Turn Architecture into Playful Portraits

July 22, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Daniel Rueda and Anna Devís, shared with permission

Valencia-based duo Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda (previously) add a playful twist to mundane settings and architectural backdrops. Whether flaring a skirt into a wide, cheesy grin, posing to prop up a facade’s stripes, or gripping the tail of a balloon that looks like a tethered sun, their minimal compositions turn geometric elements and open spaces into theatrical sets ripe with humor and joy.

Devís tells Colossal that each narrative-driven image is the result of extensive planning that begins with an initial sketch, involves pairing a concept and location, and later constructing the props. They don’t use any photo-editing software, meaning that every shot is precisely composed on-site with natural lighting, a process she explains:

We carefully set the stage in real life using all sorts of everyday objects, colorful papers, matching outfits, and tons of natural light. At first glance, one would probably think that most of our images are not very difficult to capture because of their modest appearance. But, with the passing years, we’ve learned that achieving this level of simplicity is really, really complicated.

In the coming months, the duo plans to travel to various locales for photoshoots— “there are a lot of beautiful spaces where we’d love to tell a story, but we haven’t figured it out yet,” Devís says—and are in the process of working on a forthcoming book and a few exhibitions. You can find an extensive archive on both Devís’s and Rueda’s Instagrams, and buy prints on their site.

 

 

 



Amazing Design History Photography

Spectacular Drone Views Of Giza Present the Pyramid in an Unusual Perspective

July 13, 2021

Christopher Jobson

All photos © Alexander Ladanivskyy, shared with permission

Ukrainian photographer Alexander Ladanivskyy travels the world in search of spectacular images including idyllic scenes of Icelandic waterfalls, ancient mountain cities in Jordan, and the collision of history and modernity in Nepal. Last April, he teamed up with the Ministry of Tourism in Egypt to shoot one of the most photographed landmarks on Earth: the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt. Not satisfied with recreating perspectives found on postcards and Instagram feeds, Ladanivskyy instead used a drone to shoot the 4,600-year-old structure squarely from above at different altitudes.

The series offers an uncanny view of Giza and manages to flatten the 450-foot building into an abstract collection that appears more like a cobblestone courtyard than a 92-million-cubic-foot stack of boulders. Each photo zeroes in on the pyramid’s tip, or pyramidion, which was once topped by an immense capstone that some speculate may have been gilded with gold. The area is now covered with centuries of graffiti, names etched in stone before the pyramid was more closely guarded. You can explore more of Ladanivskyy’s wide-ranging travel photography on Instagram. (thnx, Anastasia!)

 

 

 



Art

Infinite Architectural Metropolises Balance Order and Chaos in Benjamin Sack's Drawings

June 23, 2021

Grace Ebert

“Boxed In.” All images © Benjamin Sack, shared with permission

In Benjamin Sack’s imagined environments, it’s not uncommon to find angular mazes resembling dystopian structures, buildings packed so closely together it’s difficult to distinguish one from the next, and labyrinthine walkways that spiral like fractals. Working in pen and ink, the artist (previously) draws intricate black-and-white metropolises that waver between organization and chaos: He plays with geometry, angles, and dimension to render perplexing maps teeming with both traditional architecture and surreal additions, like treble clefs, astral shapes, and dizzying line- and dot-work.

While many of Sack’s works meld the past, present, and future into a single display, his recent feet-wide maze titled “Roots of Being (Per Aspera ad Astra)” is directly drawn from this last year.  “This piece was a massive, Daedalian undertaking that was started at the outset of the initial lockdowns back in March 2020 and finished upon my receiving the first dose of the vaccine in April,” the artist tells Colossal. “A large labyrinth emblematic of the epoch we persevered.”

Watch the timelapse video below and head to Instagram for a glimpse into Sack’s process, and pick up a print in his shop.

 

“Tokyo, Japan”

“Roots of Being (Per Aspera ad Astra)”

Detail of “Roots of Being (Per Aspera ad Astra)”

“Manhattanesque”

Detail of “Leitmotif”

“Endurance”

“Acoustaglyph”

“A Sensitive Chaos”

“Leitmotif”

 

 



Design

An Undulating Roof Made of Cedar and Steel Flows Out from a Pool House in Ontario

June 17, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images courtesy of Partisans

A steel slatted roof ripples across a property in southwestern Ontario, providing a meditative enclave under its gently sloping cover. Contrasting the stark black metal with softer strips of cedar, “Fold House” by Partisans features a two-story living quarter with a lengthy undulating structure that branches out from one side. It’s bisected by a staircase leading to an upper walkway and covers a luxe in-ground pool.

Partisans is an architecture studio based in Toronto that frequently works with organic shapes and textures, which you can see on its site and Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

 

 

 



Design

Sleek Wooden Ribbons Spiral in an Infinitely Looping Installation in Hong Kong

June 16, 2021

Grace Ebert

“Time Loop” (2021), 9.2 x 3.6 meters. All images © Paul Cocksedge, shared with permission

A new installation by Paul Cocksedge (previously) creates an endless circuit of coiling wood in Hong Kong’s Yue Man Square. Made of sustainably sourced timber, “Time Loop” evokes the infinity symbol and represents the city’s history of continual growth and change. A poem written in two languages is engraved in the spiraling structure, which stretches more than nine meters across and three meters tall to allow passersby to stop and rest amidst the bustling environment. “When people sit on ‘Time Loop,’ they become part of the movement of the city, as well as its transformation,” Cocksedge says. “It reflects a place that’s endured for many years, but remains constantly moving and evolving. And that’s the symbolism of the form.”

“Time Loop” was a gift from the property development company Sino Group to Hong Kong, and you can explore more of Cocksedge’s architectural projects on his studio’s site. (via designboom)

 

 

 



Photography

Abstracted Shots Frame the Endless Patterns of Architecture in Perspective-Bending Photos

June 2, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Tobi Shonibare, courtesy of Trope, shared with permission

Tobi Shonibare, aka Tobi Shinobi, has an eye for the symmetry and surreal illusion within urban architecture and landscapes. Often turning his camera upward or peering down from above, Shinobi transforms familiar structural elements like transit lines and buildings into strange scenarios: a stairwell appears like an M.C. Escher woodcut, sand dunes riddled with tracks obscure a roadway, and a seemingly endless array of plant-filled tubes dangle from the ceiling in hypnotizing rows. Shinobi abstracts and decontextualizes much of his subject matter, which shifts attention to shape, texture, and shadow.

More than 80 of his shots are compiled in Equilibrium, a new edition in Trope’s Emerging Photographer Series. The 144-page book is available on Bookshop, and you can follow Shinobi’s travels around the world, including to his native London and around his current residence in Chicago, on Instagram.