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Art Design History

A Vault of Color: A Peek Inside Harvard’s Collection of 2,500 Pigments

April 15, 2016

Christopher Jobson

Although it’s only been a few months since we mentioned Harvard’s splendid pigment collection housed inside the Straus Center for Conservation and Technical Studies, the team over at Great Big Story just took their cameras inside for a closer look. Straus director Narayan Khandekar takes us through the collection to see some of the rarest pigments including a particularly vivid shade of yellow produced from the urine of cows that are fed only mango leaves. Delightful!

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Science

When Given Colored Construction Paper, Wasps Build Rainbow Colored Nests

April 6, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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It’s unnerving to discover a wasp’s nest dangling outside your house, but perhaps it would be a tad less so with the help of biology student Mattia Menchetti who cleverly realized he could give colored construction paper to a colony of European paper wasps. By gradually providing different paper shades, the wasps turned their homes into a functional rainbow of different colors. This isn’t the first time scientists have encountered insects producing colorful materials with the aid of artificial coloring. In 2012, residue from an M&M plant caused local bees to make blue and green honey, and a similar—though admittedly more tragic—incident involving bees and the dye used in Maraschino cherries occured recently in New York. You can see more of Menchetti’s experiment on his website. (via Booooooom)

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Art

Memories of Paintings: A Soothing Technicolor Mix of Paint, Oil, Milk and Liquid Soap

March 31, 2016

Christopher Jobson

Here’s a new experimental short titled Memories of Paintings from director Thomas Blanchard (previously) who continues to experiment with colorful paint, oil, milk, and liquid soap filmed with a macro lens as it mixes and cascades in front of the camera. I could watch footage like this forever. Set to music by Bronix.

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Art Science

Chemical Compound Stickers for Crayons Help Teach Kids Chemistry While Coloring

February 15, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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The folks over at Que Interesante created this clever sticker pack for crayons, effectively turning color names into the chemical compounds that correlate with each hue. The sets seem like a fun way to learn for a science-minded family and are available in number of different packs or in bulk for schools. (via Laughing Squid)

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Art Photography

A Photographic Celebration of America’s Vibrant Textile Industry by Christopher Payne

December 31, 2015

Kate Sierzputowski

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

Typically focusing on obsolete or decrepit architectural structures, photographer Chris Payne's most recent project, Textiles, documents the aesthetics of the colorfully-hued American textile industry. His photographs showcase the bright runs of yarn and thread as the materials makes their way through the hyper-organized machinery, appearing digitally altered in their extreme hot pinks, vibrant reds, and electric blues.

Payne began photographing the factories and mills in America’s Northeast in 2010. The images are not just snapshots of the industry, but photographs that sometimes took months to catch. Due to the machinery’s continuous run and his inability to halt production, Payne had to wait until the perfect moment when the right color would appear, or the parts of the machinery would perfectly align. Payne also features the workers within his documentation of the diminishing domestic industry, explaining that their inclusion is proof that labor and craftsmanship is still valued in our current economy.

“Over the past five years, I have gained access to an industry that continues to thrive, albeit on a much smaller scale, and for the most part, out of public view,” said Payne. “Many mills are doing quite well, having modernized to stay competitive, while others have survived by catering to niche markets that value the ‘genuine article’ produced on the original, vintage equipment. I view my work as a celebration of American manufacturing—not a eulogy.

Trained as an architect, Payne typically shoots architectural structures using large format documentation to capture America’s industrial landscape. Past projects have included exploring America’s asylums and an uninhabited island named North Brother Island in New York City’s East River. Payne’s Asylum series will appear at Benrubi Gallery February 11, 2016 and run through March 26, 2016. (via Huffington Post)

Bartlettyarns, Harmony, Maine

Bartlettyarns, Harmony, Maine

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

Fall River Knitting Mills, Fall River, Massachusetts

Fall River Knitting Mills, Fall River, Massachusetts

Polartec, Lawrence, Massachusetts

Polartec, Lawrence, Massachusetts

Polartec, Lawrence, Massachusetts

Polartec, Lawrence, Massachusetts

Langhorne Carpet, Penndel, Pennsylvania

Langhorne Carpet, Penndel, Pennsylvania

Conrad-Jarvis, Pawtucket, Rhode Island

Conrad-Jarvis, Pawtucket, Rhode Island

 

Bloomsburg Carpet, Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania

Bloomsburg Carpet, Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania

Darn Tough Socks, Cabot Hosiery Mills, Northfield, Vermont

Darn Tough Socks, Cabot Hosiery Mills, Northfield, Vermont

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

S&D Spinning Mill, Millbury, Massachusetts

 

 



Art Design

A New Japanese Painting Supply Store Lines its Walls With 4,200 Different Pigments

November 16, 2015

Kate Sierzputowski

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Thousands of pigments fill glass vials below the slatted wood ceilings of the new concept Pigment, an art supply laboratory and store that just opened in Tokyo by company Warehouse TERRADA. The store design was created by architect Kengo Kuma, utilizing bamboo and large open spaces to create a sense of unity with the outdoors and spark the imagination of those who enter.

In recent years fewer artists have turned to more traditional methods of art making, diminishing the number of successors to these older forms. Pigment aims to provide hard-to-find tools for the preservation of older paintings while also inspiring the latest generation of artists to incorporate these older materials into newer works. In addition to selling brushes, pigments, special glues, and papers (some used in Japanese painting since the Meiji period), the store will also provide workshops by both art professors and manufacturers of the supplies housed in-store.

If you can’t make it to Japan to experience the space in person, you can browse Pigment’s large supply of pigments and rare materials on their online store here. (via Designboom)

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Art Design

The Nameless Paint Set: An Alternative Way of Understanding Color

September 28, 2015

Christopher Jobson

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As companies like Crayola dream up more inventive and brandable colors for their crayons like “inchworm” or “mango tango,” a young designer duo from Japan created this alternative way of exploring colors by doing away with names altogether. Nameless Paints are a set of 10 paint tubes designed by Yusuke Imai and Ayami Moteki that replace more familiar color names (which can be a tad more ambiguous, see: “jazzbery jam!”) with visual depictions of the primary colors magenta, yellow, and cyan mixed inside. The visual labeling system also relies on proportion to depict more or less of different colors to create additional shades of green, orange, or blue.

“By not assigning names to the colors we want to expand the definition of what a color can be, and the various shades they can create by mixing them,” says Imai.

While using written names may ultimately prove more useful (and more fun) in the long run, Nameless Paints are a fun way to explore how color works. The design originally won a 2012 Kokuyo Design Award, and has undergone refinements over the last few years. The set finally goes on sale in October of 2015 in Japan for roughly $15. (via Spoon & Tamago)

 

 

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