eyes

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Art

Hybrid Creatures with Oversized Eyes Reflect Imagined Landscapes in Surreal Paintings by Haoto Nattori

September 15, 2019

Andrew LaSane

Japanese artist Naoto Hattori imagines small fluffy animals with healthy doses of fantasy and some unnatural hybridization. The painted creatures often feature round heads and disproportionately large and reflective eyes. Cat-birds with mushrooms growing on their furry heads and other mashup beasts toe the line between whimsical and eerie thanks to large eyes that reveal unseen forests and landscapes.

These acrylic paintings are small, typically measuring less than 3 inches by 3 inches when unframed. The artist’s style has been labeled as pop surrealist, but Hattori says it’s just what he sees in his mind. Hattori tells Colossal that he has been drawing eyes since he was three years old. “When I closed my eyes, I could see a colorful eye like a mandala and it kept changing shape like a kaleidoscope. I drew hundreds of the eye images. Back then, I was thinking that it was something everyone could see.”

Hattori continued painting eyes as he got older and earned a BFA in Illustration from the School of Visual Arts. The creatures in the paintings are avatars for the artist entering the world of his imagination.

I’m not particular about surrealism, but I like to draw an image which can’t be expressed in words, such as feelings, thoughts, and emotions in my mind. The eye feels like an entrance to the world of visionary memories. I often paint a piece which visualizes myself as a hybrid creature entering the visionary world. The images are twisted but it feels like meditation and calms me down.

Naoto was born in Japan, moved to New York to study art, and has shown in galleries around the world, including Beinart Gallery in Melbourne, Corey Helford in Los Angeles, and Modern Eden in San Francisco. Prints of many of his animals paintings are available to purchase directly from the artist’s online store. To look into the eyes of more of Naoto Hattori’s hybrid creatures, follow him on Instagram.

 

 

 



Art

Found Stones Peer Back at Viewers with Painted Eyes

June 11, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Australian painter Jennifer Allnutt focuses on portraits in her art practice, and most of her subjects are shown from the tops of their heads down to their collarbones. But one of Allnutt’s series defies the norms of bust portraiture. Her ocular rocks feature extremely realistic renderings of eyes. On some of her larger rocks, Allnutt completely envelops each eye with a lid, lashes, and skin. But on many of her smaller pieces, the eye is incomplete, running off the edge of the stone and giving the sense that it is a fragment of a complete face. The artist sometimes returns the painted rocks to the places she found them to surprise passersby.

Allnutt studied Visual Arts at the University of South Australia and most recently exhibited her work at Marfa Gallery in Melbourne. You can see more of her paintings on Instagram and Facebook. (via designboom)

 

 



Craft

Uncanny Portraits of Cats Crafted with Realistic Glass Eyes and Felted Wool

July 24, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Japanese artist Wakuneco makes incredibly realistic portraits of feline heads, handcrafting the three-dimensional creations from felted wool. Making such lifelike cat faces has provided Wakuneco with quite the following on Youtube, where she posts how-to videos that lead her audience through the process of attaching the cats’ fur to perfectly securing each subject’s tiny whiskers. She pulls inspiration from images of real cats for her unique pieces, which range in breed, color, and size. She sells her sculpture objects on Yahoo! Auctions, but currently only ships within Japan. You can see more of Wakuneco’s pieces on Instagram and Twitter. (via My Modern Met and Laughing Squid)

 

 



Art

Lifelike Eyes Clustered Together in Striking Abstract Portraits by Emilio Villalba

July 11, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

San Francisco-based painter Emilio Villalba creates abstract portraits inspired by the precision of master works from the past. His paintings are set against white backgrounds that partially cover or obscure large clusters of diverse, hyperrealistic eyes, which are each painted from photographs of posed family members or friends. Villalba feels more comfortable capturing the feelings in familiar subjects’ faces rather than strangers, an element which he presents in his emotive work.

“Subtle shifts, repetition, (re)placement, or absence of facial features are attempts to create a feeling of dissonance and pressure in the viewer,” explains Villalba in an artist statement. “I want someone to be drawn in by the uncanny nature of a piece and still feel safe to explore the feelings and reactions the pressure gives rise to.”

You can see more of the artist’s paintings of eyes and other facial features on his website and Instagram.

          

 

 



Art

Hilarious Kinetic Eye Sculptures by Lucas Zanotto

October 3, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

EYES is a short film by Lucas Zanotto (previously) showcasing several kinetic sculptures both built and filmed by the Helsinki-based director. Each installation is composed of simple parts that subtly imitate an action associated with one’s eyes. In one piece, two transparent globes slowly leak streams of water onto the floor below. In another, two black balls swing back and forth above an open book, slowly scanning the pages below. You can watch more of Zanotto’s videos on his Instagram and Vimeo, and take a look at all nine of his optical installations in the short piece above. Sound design by David Kamp.

 

 



Art

Artist Shows That Putting Googly Eyes on Inanimate Objects Never Gets Old

June 1, 2017

Christopher Jobson

Ah yes, eyebombing, the street art equivalent of drawing a funny mustache on Mona Lisa. So ubiquitous it’s impossible to credit anyone for inventing it… and yet for some reason it never quite stops being hilarious? Or maybe it’s just me. Probably just me. Vanyu Krastev of Eyebombing Bulgaria helps keep it alive. (via Tastefully Offensive, Quipsologies)

Update: Did you know there’s a Googly Eyes Foundation? Supposedly they will even send you free googly eyes.

 

 



Photography

Uncanny Photographs of Iridescent Oil Spills by Fabian Oefner

August 31, 2016

Christopher Jobson

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As part of an ongoing effort to explore the visual effects of iridescence, artist Fabian Oefner (previously) created a new photographic series titled Oil Spill. To create the images he used a syringe to drip small drops of oil into a black reservoir containing water. As the oil expanded into plumes he captured the images you see here reminiscent of giant fires, irises, or exploding stars. You can see more from the series on Behance.

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