mythology

Posts tagged
with mythology



Art

Evoking Mythology and Urban Culture, Beaded Masks Brim with Geometric Motifs and Embellishments

September 20, 2021

Grace Ebert

All images © Fefe Talavera, shared with permission

From small shells and Amazonian beads, Brazilian-Mexican artist Fefe Talavera strings together elaborate masks that fuse ancient mythologies and contemporary urban culture. The mixed-media works are part of an ongoing series—Talavera shares more on her site and Instagram, along with vibrant silhouettes painted in acrylic and her large-scale murals—that embellish expressive faces with stripes, symmetries, and various geometric patterns. Sometimes spanning upwards of ten feet or featuring a long tuft of straw, the masks are an amalgam of color, motif, and material that blur cultural boundaries and the tenuous distinction between humanity and nature.

The São Paulo-based artist tells Colossal that the series “developed when my government opened the doors to cattle ranchers, when forest fires began, putting an end to Indigenous tribes, exotic animals, and trees,” and initial iterations used açaí seeds, shells, and mirrors to explore birth and death through a mystical lens. “When we looked at our reflection in the work, we would be seeing ourselves with respect and love, and it is this look that we should have with the Amazonia,” she says.

Currently, Talavera is working on a larger-scale piece using 20,000 beads, and she has a solo show planned for May 2022 at Paris’s Bandy Bandy Gallery.

 

 

 



Illustration

Illustrated Florals Adorn A Gold-Wrapped Tarot Deck Infused with Botanic History

May 14, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Beehive Books

By pairing a classic tarot deck with stunning botanical illustrations, Kevin Jay Stanton merges the spiritual practice with the historical mythology behind plants and flowers. “Their archetypal symbols have mystical, philosophical, and psychological implications that allow us to understand our past, our future, and ourselves,” the illustrator said in a Kickstarter explainer. “But even older than that is the symbolism we’ve always assigned to the plants that grow around us.”

Lined with gold foil, the 78-card deck is replete with acrylic and ink renderings on a dark backdrop. While the Major Arcana features lone specimens, the Minor Arcana details botanical compositions with suit-specific objects like coins or cups. Every court card is adorned with royal notations.

Stanton’s pairings of The Queen of Swords and red oleander, The Devil and nightshade, and The High Priestess and elderflower each expand the potential readings. “Divination is the process of finding meaning in symbols or patterns, and similarly, the act of reading tarot is finding patterns, meaning, and visions in the symbols,” he said. “A larger picture is created when a story is formed from how one card interacts with the next, as a bouquet is created from the harmony between many flowers.”

To pick up your own set, three editions—the Herbalist, Dark Alchemist, and Enchanter—are available for pre-order through Beehive Books. Stay up-to-date with Stanton’s mythical projects on Instagram. And if you’re interested in another entrance into the divine, check out Salvador Dalí’s deck.

 

 

 



Art

A Graffiti-Covered Mural by PichiAvo Converts a Pipe into Cupid's Arrow

April 22, 2020

Grace Ebert

Mural in Port Adelaide, 9 x 17 meters. Image © PichiAvo, shared with permission

French artist François-Joseph Bosio notably left his iconic marble sculpture Cupid with a Bow (1808) without the actual weapon. In a recent rendering by Valencia-based duo PichiAvo (previously), though, the Roman god is outfitted with a long arrow fashioned out of a preexisting horizontal duct. The graffiti-laden mural was PichiAvo’s contribution to the 2020 Wonderwalls Festival in Port Adelaide.

Known for Urbanmythology—a style that blends urban artwork and Greek and Roman mythology—PichiAvo seamlessly merges the two into vibrant, large-scale compositions. The street artists also depicted Cupid in a 2018 project in Italy, and they tell Colossal that their recent mural is an extension of their fascination with the deity of love and lust. Head to Instagram and YouTube for a deeper look into the duo’s processes, and pick up a print from their shop. (via Street Art News)

Image © PichiAvo

Image © Luke Shirlaw – Artillery Projects,

Image © Luke Shirlaw – Artillery Projects

Image © Luke Shirlaw – Artillery Projects

Image © Luke Shirlaw – Artillery Projects

 

 



History Illustration

Artists Respond to the Coronavirus Outbreak by Flooding Social Media with a Japanese Yokai Said to Ward Off Epidemics

March 13, 2020

Grace Ebert

A Japanese legend dating back to the 1800s has been resurfacing across social media recently because of its tie to staving off epidemics. A three-legged mermaid or merman with long hair and beak, the Amabie falls within the tradition of the yōkai—which is a supernatural monster or spirit in Japanese culture— and is said to have appeared from the waters near Kumamoto. The mythical tale states that the scale-covered creature emerged from the sea to tell prophecies about the upcoming harvests and potential destruction from disease. In the case of an epidemic, the legend states that people are supposed to draw the Amabie and share it with everyone who is ill. In response to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, Twitter and Instagram are full of illustrations, pencil drawings, and wool sculptures of the mysterious figure. (via Spoon & Tamago)

by illustrator Satake Shunske

phone backgrounds by tettetextile

by artist, painter, and designer Abe Seiji

by manga artist Keiichi Tanaka

 

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Art History

Researchers Unearth World's Oldest Figurative Artwork in Indonesian Cave

December 13, 2019

Grace Ebert

A recent finding in Sulawesi, Indonesia, is changing our conceptions of the origins of visual art. Fifteen researchers this week published an article in Nature describing prehistoric cave art that they believe was created about 43,900 years ago. The art depicts multiple therianthropes—mythical creatures that have both human and animal characteristics like beaks and tails—hunting wild pigs and cattle with spears. Traditionally, therianthropes were employed for sharing folklore, religious myths, and spiritual beliefs. Clear renderings of the creatures are uncommon, the report says. The oldest depiction previously recorded is a carved figurine with the head of a cat that originated in Germany and dates back nearly 40,000 years. These Indonesian findings also predate the Lascaux cave paintings found in France by about 20,000 years. “This hunting scene is—to our knowledge—currently the oldest pictorial record of storytelling and the earliest figurative artwork in the world,” the report said. (via Artnet)

 

 



Art

Timeless Murals by MonkeyBird Are Inspired by Mythology and Alchemy

October 1, 2019

Laura Staugaitis

The anonymous artist duo MonkeyBird creates large-scale paintings of black-and-white cross contour depictions of mythical animals accented in gold. Most MonkeyBird artworks incorporate a humanoid monkey and bird, which represent “the two faces of humankind, the monkey being the realist, and the bird being a dreamer,” according to Paris-based 5Art Gallery. Old-world details like classical architecture, timekeeping devices, and weight scales add to the timeless look of the pair’s paintings. MonkeyBird’s members bring training in graphic design, as well as object and industrial design to their artistic aesthetic, which can be seen in their clean, technique-driven stenciling.

Based in Bordeaux, France, MonkeyBird travels widely to create outdoor murals as well as indoor installations. They’ll be working in Moscow from October 2 to the 11th. Follow along with MonkeyBird’s newest projects on Instagram, and pick up a limited edition print in their online store. (via Hi-Fructose)