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Art Colossal

Open Call: The Elmhurst Art Museum Resurrects ‘Par Excellence,’ an Artist-Designed Mini Golf Course from 1988

October 2, 2019

Colossal

In a unique collision of recreation and art, the Elmhurst Art Museum will commission an 18-hole artist-designed golf course in homage to the wildly popular 1988 exhibition Par Excellence at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. The fully playable course will be conceived and fabricated by a new group of contemporary artists, designers, and architects selected through an open call process. Designed to fill the entirety of the museum’s interior galleries, the course will be comprised of a surprisingly varied collection of themes and forms, promising an unusual twist on a familiar pastime.

The extraordinarily popular exhibition was the brainchild of sculptor Michael O’Brien and opened to lines down the block. The show sold out daily and found its way to the pages of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, People Magazine, CNN, and the Chicago Tribune among others. The course went on tour to downstate Illinois before returning to Chicago as a rebranded commercial miniature golf course called ArtGolf at 1800 N. Clybourn in Lincoln Park (currently the site of Goose Island Brewery).

Artist-designed golf courses are now a popular addition to many Midwest museums such as the Walker Art Center, The Sheldon, and Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, but Par Excellence is widely believed to be the first.

Par Excellence Redux is curated by Colossal’s founder & editor-in-chief Christopher Jobson. To learn more about the open call process and submit your ideas for a hole, head on over to the Elmhurst Art Museum for more info.

Archival photos of Par Excellence & ArtGolf 1988-1992

 

 



Design History Illustration

Who’s She: A Laser-Cut Guessing Game That Celebrates Accomplished Women Throughout History

December 3, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Who’s She is a new guessing game by Polish designer Zuzia Kozerska (previously) which celebrates the achievements of famous women across the world. The laser-cut wooden board flips up to reveal the faces of 28 painters, athletes, scientists, and astronauts, in a similar style the classic Guess Who? game did from the late 1970s. Instead of posing superficial questions such as “does your character have glasses?” the game asks players to inquire about achievements and contributions like “did she win a Nobel Prize?”.

Faces range from the early 20th-century painter Frida Kahlo to contemporary athlete Serena Williams, all illustrated in watercolor portraits by artist Daria Gołąb. The game is currently seeking funding on Kickstarter. You can follow the evolution of the project on Instagram. (via My Modern Met)

 

 



Design

Around the World in 80 Ways: Infinitely Arrangeable Earth and Moon Puzzles

November 30, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Puzzle wizards Nervous System (previously) explore the expansive qualities of earth and space in two new mind-boggling puzzles. The Infinite Earth puzzle includes 442 pieces, and the Infinite Moon has 186. Each can be rearranged in virtually an unlimited number of times. The math behind the magic is an icosahedral map projection, which applies the topology of a sphere without the traditional boundaries. You can learn more of the math behind the transposition from sphere to puzzle on Nervous System’s blog. Nervous System individually prints and laser cuts each puzzle on birch plywood in their Somerville workshop. You can find the Infinite Earth and Infinite Moon puzzles in The Colossal Shop!

 

 



Photography

Uncanny Resemblances Between Classic Dog Breeds and Humans Captured by Gerrard Gethings

September 19, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Gerrard Gethings has captured a lot of personalities as an animal photographer, including his own canine muse Baxter. Therefore when he began shooting his latest series that paired humans and look-alike dog breeds, it would only make sense that he would first focus on finding the perfect animal models before locating matching humans. For the memory game Do You Look Like Your Dog? Gethings spent a year creating images that examine the classic trope of owners looking just like their canine friends. The new game presents 25 matches, which include a long-haired Afghan and equally silky-haired owner, a messy-haired kid and his scruffy puppy, and Schnauzer with a matching beard to his leather jacket-clad owner. You can now purchase the memory game through Laurence King, and see more of Gethings’s animal portraiture on Instagram.

 

 



Animation Design Illustration

Take a Virtual Vacation on Vera van Wolferen’s Animated ‘Thought Hopper 3000’

July 5, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

The Thought Hopper 3000 is a new project from the mind of Dutch paper craftsman and stop-motion animator Vera van Wolferen (previously). The interactive website presents the viewer with a five-minute vacation programmed inside of a quaint mobile camper made entirely from paper. Players are encouraged to click around for “hot spots” hidden throughout the site which spring to life when selected.

The game is currently in its first demo version and is condensed to around five minutes of play. Van Wolferen hopes to expand the Thought Hopper 3000 universe to include several other animated components and add more rooms for the user to explore. The short game’s scenes are animated by Raymon Wittenberg, the sounds were produced by Flavia Faas, and interaction design, graphics, and programming were done by Floris Douma.

You can learn about new additions to the project by visiting its website, and follow van Wolferen’s paper and balsa wood-based sculptures on Facebook and Instagram. If you like this interactive game you might also enjoy playing Short Trip, another animated paper world designed by Alexander Perrin.

 

 



Design Illustration

Dodgy Dogs Chase, Beg, and Bark Their Way to the Top in a Humorous Card Game Illustrated by Jean Jullien

July 5, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Part of the unending charm of the human-pet bond is our tolerance for all sorts of annoying, destructive, and disruptive behavior from our domesticated animal pals. Illustrator Jean Jullien captures the range of bad dog habits from stealing and chasing to begging and biting in a new card game, Dodgy Dogs. The project was created in partnership with Yolky Games, and is currently funding on Kickstarter, where it reached its funding goal in under six hours.

 

 



Animation Art Illustration

Transport Cats Across an Animated Countryside With Alexander Perrin’s Interactive Illustration ‘Short Trip’

September 29, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Short Trip is an interactive illustration by Australian artist Alexander Perrin. The meditative simulation places the player in the conductor’s seat of a cross-country train, allowing the user to use their arrow keys to go forwards or backwards through the game’s peaceful black and white countryside while delivering a series of animated cat passengers.

The illustrated simulation took Perrin five years to complete, from researching how a graphite-based drawing could be presented on a digital platform, to creating all the necessary components of the train’s journey by hand. His interest for this particular scenery came from riding on the Hakone Tozan Railway in Japan, one of his favorite ways of travel.

“It’s a magical, rickety switchback railway that ascends a forest shrouded mountain all throughout the year,” Perrin told Colossal. “There’s something about the beautifully crafted forms of the railway in sculpted union with the cliff faces and trees that just hits such a therapeutic, aesthetic sweet spot. It’s a little bit like riding an enlarged miniature railway, if you know what I mean. You remain passive and enjoy the ride for the sake of the journey.”

The game was built with this passiveness in mind, the only “goal” of the project to get to the other side of the railway while you enjoy the scenery and relaxing soundtrack of gentle bird chirping and cable car as it softly rumbles across the tracks. We recommend make the game full-screen with audio to get the full, tranquil experience of Short Trip.

You can watch a scene from an earlier game prototype by Perrin called Noirmittens in the video below, and see more clips from his current simulator on his website and Instagram.

 

 

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