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Art Craft Design

Elaborate Historical Wigs Formed From Copper Wire by Bespoke Sculptor Yasemen Hussein

April 8, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

Mixed media bespoke sculptor Yasemen Hussein explains that her art career was originally pointed in the direction of glass, but she found her passion for metalwork while working toward an MFA at Illinois State University. Now well established in her metal practice, Hussein uses copper electrical cable to form elaborate and sinuously lifelike hairdos. The video below, from London’s Victoria & Albert Museum, takes a look inside Hussein’s studio as she created wigs used by the V&A for their exhibit Opera: Passion, Power and Politics.

Hussein works in a coverted stable house in south London, where she manipulates the thin metal cables to simulate elaborate styles ranging from carefully coiled curls to the sweeping fan-like shapes of a geisha’s coif. Rather than creating exact replicas of realistic hair in every wig, Hussein incorporates artistic license to suggest the volume and gesture of each historical look.

In addition to her dramatic wigs, Hussein also creates geometric sculptural installations and delicate copper feathers. You can explore more of the sculptor’s work on her website.

 

 



Art Craft Illustration

Hand-Sewn Portraits by Sheena Liam Capture Quiet Moments of Self Care

October 16, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Malaysian-born artist and model Sheena Liam (previously) creates self-portraiture through dark green thread and embroidery hoops. The hand-sewn images imitate her own subtle gestures from her day-to-day life, focusing on rituals of self care. “In a strange way modeling parallels my art in the sense I often have to use body language as means of expressing a certain sort of mood,” she explains. “It’s no different from my embroideries.”

Long locks flow off the canvas from sewn ponytails and braids, which give the monochromatic work a sense of movement from their static position on the wall. Liam’s first solo exhibition in France, Times New Romance, opens at Item Gallery in Paris on October 19, 2018 and runs through October 27, 2018. You can see more of her works on Instagram.

     

 

 

 

 

 



Photography

Nigerian Hair Culture Documented in Rainbow-Hued Portraits by Medina Dugger

August 9, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

Purple Kinky Calabar. All photographs © Medina Dugger

Lagos-based photographer Medina Dugger documents colorful hair culture in the coastal Nigerian city with her ongoing series Chroma. The collection of portraits pays homage to J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere, a renowned African photographer who documented women’s hairstyles in Nigeria for over 50 years, starting in the mid-20th century.

Prior to decolinization, Dugger explains, wigs and straightening had replaced much of the indigenous hair culture, and ‘Okhai Ojeikere’s documentations sought to celebrate traditional hairdos. She continues, “African hair braiding methods date back thousands of years and Nigerian hair culture is a rich and often extensive process which begins in childhood. The methods and variations have been influenced by social/cultural patterns, historical events and globalization. Hairdos range from being purely decorative to conveying deeper, more symbolic understandings, revealing social status, age and tribal/family traditions.”

While ‘Okhai Ojeikere’ images were in black and white, Dugger updates the documentary style with brightly colored backgrounds, a diverse array of vibrant contemporary fashion, and rainbow hues integrated into the hairstyles with thread, beads, and dyed extensions. You can see more of Dugger’s colorful editorial photography on her website and Instagram.

Blue Coiling Penny Penny

Blue Beri Beri

Golden Eggs

Left: Purple Irun Kiko / Right: Pink Buns

Yellow Tip Twist

Emerald Abebe

Aqua Suku

Left: Violet Irun Kiko / Right: Yellow Monocle

Pink Didi with Cowry Shell

Blue Star Koroba

Calabar Bun Trio

 

 



Art

Feminine Hairstyles From Popular Folklore Embroidered on British and American Currency by Noora Schroderus

July 9, 2018

Kate Sierzputowski

Finnish artist Noora Schroderus embroiders classic hairstyles inspired by well-known female characters of European folktales and Disney films onto the leaders featured on US and British currency. The hairstyles are reminiscent of Cinderella’s ball-ready bouffant or Rapunzel’s endless braid and examine the passive beauty associated with feminine characters in contrast with the masculine power of wealth. The banknotes also explore aspects of industrialization, pinning the production of money and capitalism against the slow process and gesture of handmade embroidery. You can see a wider range of hairstyles sewn on currency from around the world on Schroderus’s website.

Exhibition view from Serlachius Museum Göstä, Mänttä Finland

 

 



Photography

Afro Beauty Brought to Life in Photographer Luke Nugent’s Lavish Hair Portraiture

April 25, 2018

Laura Staugaitis

British photographer Luke Nugent captures a wide range of style, beauty, and personal expression in his creative photo shoots, for which he often works with London-based hair stylist Lisa Farrall. Nugent highlights women of color in his varied series, from the more subdued everyday styles in Emancipate to the Afrofuturism-inspired Armour, which was a finalist for the 2016 British Hair Awards.

Nugent studied photography at London’s University of Greenwich, and has been shooting professionally since his late teens. He creates work for a variety of commercial and editorial campaigns, with a focus on fashion, portraiture, and music. You can see more of his photography on his website, as well as Instagram and Behance. (via Scene360)

 

 

 



Art

Sky-High Paper Wigs Topped With Modern Luxuries by Asya Kozina

October 16, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Paper artist Asya Kozina was inspired by the decadent wigs found in Baroque and Rococo still lifes, tall masses of hair adorned with objects that represent the ideals of luxury and beauty in the 17th and 18th centuries. Her series Skyscraper on the Head imagines how these outdated accessories might look if produced today, replacing the exotic fruits and birds of early centuries with airplanes, skyscrapers, and ferris wheels.

The project is a continuation of a series of Baroque paper wigs the artist began making in 2015. You can see more of Kozina’s life-size and miniature paper costumes on her Instagram and Behance. (via Design Boom)

 

 



Art Illustration

Detailed Graphite Hair Drawings by Hong Chun Zhang

August 23, 2017

Kate Sierzputowski

Chinese artist Hong Chun Zhang creates graphite drawings that replace everyday materials with ribbons, sheets, or swirls of shiny black hair. The works, titled Hairy Objects, are intended to be humorous while also a bit unsettling, allowing the beauty of hair to also repulse the audience when caught emerging from the spine of a book or the spout of a bathroom sink.

The surreal drawings also focus on her cultural identity, especially connections with her family in China, and her identity as a woman and sister. The hair represents a powerful life force, imbuing each piece with an aspect of herself.

In addition to graphite drawings, Zhang also creates ink paintings in the traditional Chinese fine style which requires applying ink from lighter to darker shades through eight successive layers. The technique is very realistic and time consuming, requiring years of specialized training. Hong studied at the Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) in Beijing for four years, as well as learned from her parents who had a strong influence on her artistic style at a young age.

In addition to getting her BFA in Chinese painting from CAFA, Zhang received her MFA at the University of California, Davis. She currently lives and works in Lawrence, Kansas.