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Art

Indoor Installation of 10,000 Plants Considers Relationship Between Endangered Australian Grasslands and Architecture

September 4, 2018

Andrew LaSane

All images by Rory Gardiner

For Australia’s Venice Architecture Biennale pavilion, curators Mauro Baracco and Louise Wright, of Baracco+Wright Architects worked with artist Linda Tegg to create Grasslands Repair, a 10,000-plant recreation of the grasslands of southeast Victoria. The living indoor installation spans much of the pavilion and extends to its outdoor space, with walkways that allow viewers to move among the 65 species of Western Plains Grasslands plants.

The theme for the 2018 biennale (which opened in May) is “Repair,” which was described in a press release as a way of considering how architecture can “play a role in repairing the places it is part of.” Only one percent of the grasslands of mid-18th century Victoria still exists— largely the result of urbanization and industrial land use — so for Baracco, Wright, and Tegg, Grasslands Repair shows the real cost of human land occupation. “The area of plants exhibited is similar to that taken up by the pavilion,” the curators said. “It is also a smaller area than that of an average Australian family house. Such an area takes around an hour to bulldoze.”

Supporting the living garden from above is an installation called Skylight, which uses LEDs as an artificial light source since the walls and ceiling of the structure block the sun. Throughout the biennale, films that explore the theme of Repair are screened on the walls of the Grasslands Repair installation, including Ground, which was created by Baracco+Wright and Tegg in collaboration with David Fox. Without the history of the region for context, the installation is just another indoor garden perfectly suited for selfies, but with the knowledge of what human interaction has done to indigenous species, it becomes a call to action to try and undo the damage we have done.

The 2018 Venice Architecture Biennale continues through November 25, 2018. (via Dezeen)

 

 



Art

Amok Island Paints Modern Minimalist Murals of Native Flora and Fauna

February 16, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Rotterdam, The Netherlands 2017. ‘Zeus faber’ for SOBER WALLS Festival

A native of The Netherlands and now based in Australia, Amok Island depicts flora and fauna that can be found in the locations of his colorful murals. The artist’s distinctive minimal style is reminiscent of recent trends in digital design. However, his analog use of flat fields of color and geometric shapes to interpret the nuanced forms of animals and plants is a fresh take in the current mural scene.

Amok writes on his website that if weren’t an artist, he would be a biologist. He takes many of his own reference photos (including underwater), and titles each mural with the name of the plant or animal. The artist describes his passion for the natural world:

The theme of natural exploration and conservation is a strong and constant undercurrent of Amok Island’s artistic practice. His lifelong fascination with nature and her relationships and history with mankind drive the artist’s obvious appreciation and obsession with his subjects and his urge to direct the attention of his audience to them.

Amok has finished murals in twenty five countries and counting, and also creates smaller paintings, which he sometimes editions as prints. You can see more work on his website, as well as on Facebook and Instagram.

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (side 2) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (side 1) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Ravensthorpe, Western Australia 2016. ‘Six Stages of Banksia Baxteri’ (in progress) Commissioned by FORM WA and CBH

Axolotl, Mexico

Fremantle, Western Australia 2015. ‘Praying Mantis’ for PUBLIC Festival

Port Hedland, Western Australia 2015. ‘Flatback Turtle Hatchling’ commissioned by FORM WA

Amsterdam, The Netherlands 2016. ‘Horse Chestnut’ Commissioned by LTS / Spooker

Claremont, Western Australia 2017. ‘Mushrooms’ commissioned by FORM / Claremont Quarters

North Fremantle, Western Australia 2015. ‘Blue Swimmer Crab’ for UNDERLINE festival

Collaboration with Georgia Hill and Thomas Jackson in Erskineville, Sydney

Surry Hills, Sydney 2017 ‘Mushroom Study’ Commissiones by Canva

 

 



Art Photography

Saltscapes: Mirrors Reflect the Sky in an Australian Salt Flat Lake

May 4, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Mirror 11, 2017

Mirror 11, 2017

Since 2003, Australian photographer Murray Fredericks has made at least twenty journeys to the center of Lake Eyre, a desert lake with an extremely high concentration of salt. Fredericks drags all of his equipment out into the barren landscape, capturing the dramatic sky reflected in both the inch-deep water and his rectangular mirror. The images are breathtaking color-based works, my favorites featuring a double horizon locked within the mirror and the water below.

“In the ‘Vanity’ series, rather than reflecting our own ‘surface’ image, the mirror is positioned to draw our gaze out and away from ourselves, into the environment, driving us towards an emotional engagement with light, colour and space,” said Fredericks about the series.

Images from Vanity are included in his solo exhibition titled Salt:Vanity at Hamiltons Gallery in London through June 14, 2017. You can see a behind-the-scenes look at Fredericks’ photographic process and journey into Lake Eyre in the short video above. (via Ignant)

Mirror 13, 2017

Mirror 13, 2017

Mirror 30, 2017

Mirror 6, 2017

Mirror 6, 2017

Mirror 12, 2017, all images © Murray Fredericks

Mirror 18, 2017

 

 



Photography

New Photographs of Monumental Waves Crashing in Australia by Warren Keelan

February 8, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Australian photographer Warren Keelan (previously) captures crashing waves from beside, and sometimes within their swell. Clad in a wetsuit he takes to the South Coast of New South Wales, Australia to photograph the dazzling curvature of waves right as they break. Keelan sells prints of both the waves and sea life he comes across during his swims on his website. You can see more of his work on his Instagram and Facebook.

 

 

 



Art

Rainy Australian Cityscapes by Mike Barr

December 28, 2016

Kate Sierzputowski

Australian painter Mike Barr focuses his work almost exclusively on rainy cityscapes, the moments of hazy gray that become illuminated by a city’s cars and traffic lights. There is a unity found in these dreary urban landscapes, a similarity of imagery which it makes it difficult to pinpoint which city is being captured. The city featured here however is Melbourne, a city Barr often focuses on in his umbrella spotted pieces. You can see more of Barr’s paintings on his Facebook and website.

 

 



Photography

Photos of Monumental Waves Crashing in Australia by Warren Keelan

April 20, 2016

Christopher Jobson

warren-extra

Trying to capture a medium that’s in a constant state of flux would seem stressful in any situation, but photographer Warren Keelan works comfortably in a wetsuit amongst crashing waves on the South Coast of New South Wales, Australia, always trying for the perfect shot. Whether working completely submerged or perched precariously on the cusp of a behemoth swell, he’s consistently able to find the right angle and lighting to highlight the monumental power of the constantly moving ocean. He shares about his process:

I’ve always had a fascination with nature, especially the ocean and its ever changing forms, and I am compelled to capture and share what I feel are special and unique moments in the sea. I love the raw, unpredictable nature of water in motion and the way sunlight brings it all to life, from both above and below the surface. For me, the challenge is creating an image that hopefully tells a story or leaves an impression on the viewer.

Keelan has a gallery in his hometown of Wollongong, Australia, and many of his photos are avilable as prints online. You can also follow him on Instagram. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

WarrenKeelan_Congeal

WarrenKeelan_Gyroscope

WarrenKeelan_Kryptonite

WarrenKeelan_Layers

WarrenKeelan_Mountainside

WarrenKeelan_SeaSnake

WarrenKeelan_SilverHelix

WarrenKeelan_Undulate

 

 



Amazing Science

An Unusual Cloud Phenomenon Above the Skies of Victoria, Australia

November 6, 2015

Christopher Jobson

1lN62mo

Redditor big_mac_heart_attack Photographer David Barton snapped this extremely unusual weather event above the skies of Victoria, Australia. Apparently the unusual event is called a Fallstreak Hole (or commonly a ‘hole punch cloud’):

Such holes are formed when the water temperature in the clouds is below freezing but the water has not frozen yet due to the lack of ice nucleation (see supercooled water). When ice crystals do form it will set off a domino effect, due to the Bergeron process, causing the water droplets around the crystals to evaporate: this leaves a large, often circular, hole in the cloud.

Not unsurprisingly, Fallstreak Holes are one of the most common cloud-related events reported as UFOs. (via This Isn’t Happiness)

 

 

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