sculpture

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Craft Illustration

Paper Figures and Objects by Bethany Bickley Spring From Book Pages

May 11, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Bethany Bickley

A measure of well-written fiction is its ability to provoke clear images in the minds of its readers. For Bethany Bickley, though, the joy of envisioning protagonists and scenery has a more literal element. The Savannah-based artist utilizes pages torn from classics, magazines, and contemporary works to fashion distinctive paper sculptures of clenched fists, a lounging reader, and a trio of masks. Each figurative work serves as a tangible representation of otherwise imagined visuals.

Among her bookish sculptures are the iconic pear tree from Zora Neale Hurston’s Their Eyes Were Watching God, a seated Esther Greenwood from Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar, and an amalgam of weapons and detective objects to symbolize the thriller genre. In a statement, Bickley said she merges narrative and imagery “to tell a story with impact and purpose. If there are no visuals, I create them.”

To see more of the artist’s illustrative projects and take a peek at her process, head to Instagram. (via designboom)

 

 

 



Art

Unspun Wool Sculpted into Intimate Portraits by Artist Salman Khoshroo

May 8, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Salman Khoshroo, shared with permission

For Salman Khoshroo, carefully fashioning thick fibers into masculine portraits has a therapeutic effect. The Iranian artist, whose impasto paintings we’ve written about previously on Colossal, says his Wool on Foam series is born out of recent trauma and experience in quarantine. By sculpting the wool rovings into slight noses, puckered lips, and flowing hair, Khoshroo has evoked the delicacy and vulnerability humans face in precarious situations.

We live in fragile times, and I feel the need to find new materials and the mindset to reinvent my practice. Wool brings warmth and intimacy to these portraits and plays with provoking the nurture instinct. Making male portraits with this habitually perceived feminine material is part of a personal journey in re-interpreting the masculine condition.

The artist tells Colossal that he preferred to keep the pigmented rovings in their natural form, rather than spinning them into thread or pairing them down before use. “I laid the wool like floating brush strokes and these are the results. I guess coming to a new material without any predisposition makes it easier to create something without the burden of established techniques,” he says. Khoshroo sees these works as an extension of his established practice that produces similarly abstract portraits. 

To follow his upcoming endeavors, which includes crafting larger wool sculptures, head to Instagram. Check out this process video on his site, too.

 

 

 



Art

Luminescent Zip-Tie Formations Are Shaped into Futuristic Organic Life by Artist Elisabeth Picard

May 1, 2020

Grace Ebert

“Ondulation” (2014), white zip-ties, RGB LED light, and painted plywood, 
36 x 36 x 6 ¼ inches. 
Photo by Michel Dubreuil. All images © Elisabeth Picard, shared with permission

Montreal-based artist Elisabeth Picard curls, fans, and locks together hundreds of zip-ties into tremendously formed glowing sculptures and undulating installations. The futuristic artworks merge geological and organic elements with science fiction to create abstract formations that the artist likens to “landscapes, minerals, plants, micro-organisms, and sea creatures.”

Picard tells Colossal that since she began working with the nylon links in 2011, she’s used more than 300,000 ties. The artist hand-dyes each piece with pastels, earth tones, and sometimes fluorescent hues that will later glow under UV light and add depth with shadows. Some artworks even are assembled with a lightbox backdrop. Each glowing piece is designed to elucidate the contrast between the original material and the final structures, and numeric art, vector drawing, programming, and 3D printing all guide her research.

Find more of Picard’s artworks that consider the future of the natural world on Instagram and Vimeo.

 

“Evolution” (2015), 
dyed zip-ties with plexi lightbox, 
20.5 x 21.5 x 6 inches. Photo by 
Michel Dubreuil

“Volute 1 et Volute 2” (2013), 
dyed zip-ties, 
7 x 7 x 7 and 7 x 8.5 x 8.5 inches. 
Photo by Michel Dubreuil

“Flot” (2011), 
15, 000 zip-ties, glass, painted steel, and fluorescent light, 
28.25 x 76.5 x 38.5 inches. Photo by Michel Dubreuil

“Chlorophyta” (2015), dyed zip-ties with plexi lightbox, 
18.43 x 18.43 x 9.37 inches
. Photo by Michel Dubreuil

Left: “Navicula” (2015), 
dyed zip-ties and plexi plate
, 12 x 7 x 5.5 inches
. Photo by Michel Dubreuil. Top right: “Spirale” (2013), dyed zip-ties,
 13 x 10 x 4 inches. 
Photo by Michel Dubreuil. Bottom right: “Staurastrum” (2015
), dyed zip-ties and plexi tablet
, 9 x 8.5 x 8.25 inches. Photo by Michel Dubreuil

“Strongylocentrotus” (2013), 
dyed zip-ties, with plexi lightbox, 
15 x 15.75 x 8 inches. 
Photo by Michel Dubreuil

“Macro-organismes: Couronne” (2011-2016
), zip-ties, baked enamel steel, plexi lightbox, and programmable RGB LED, 
19 x 19 x 8 inches. 
Photo by Michel Dubreuil

 

 



Art Illustration

Iconic Marble Sculptures Tattooed with Inky Backdrops and Floral Motifs by Fabio Viale

April 27, 2020

Grace Ebert

Viale’s Laocoön. All images © Fabio Viale

Italian sculptor Fabio Viale inks his marble reproductions of iconic sculptures with heavy scenes of ancient stories, swirling waves, and foreboding clouds. Each vine, flower, and dragon-based composition is settled on a darkened backdrop that tends to envelop an entire back, leg, or shoulder, triggering an uncommon amalgam of material and form.

Viale doesn’t paint the marble but rather infuses an arm or chest with color and pattern in a manner that’s similar to tattooing a human body. He collaborated with chemists to refine the blended technique and said that “not surprisingly, each natural material has its strong personality and difficulties connected to it.”

In an interview with designboom, the sculptor spoke about merging art history and what he terms the “‘criminal tattoo,’ imbued with symbols and representations that derive from artistic imagination.” Viale says that by reproducing classical works rather than creating his own busts and marble statues, he’s able to better understand the original artist and the sentiments behind the iconic pieces.

It is a meeting between life and death, between the sacred and the profane. A combination, the relationships between these two sets, results in a solid bond that creates energy: The preconception we have of classical beauty and the hardness inherent in a certain type of criminal tattoo provoke gasp and wonder.

In comparison to the original Roman sculpture, Viale’s Laocoön is missing one boy on his right side. The main writhing figure is covered from mid-thigh up to his neck and down to his forearms with dark illustrations that include the seven deadly sins in “The Inferno,” which was painted by Giovanni da Modena in the 15th Century. Both the sculptor’s “Venus de Milo” and pair of hands are covered in code often found marked on Russian inmates.

To follow Viale’s work that fuses art history and more contemporary ink-based illustrations, head to his Instagram.

Viale’s Laocoön

Viale’s Laocoön

Viale’s Venus de Milo

Tattooed Venus of Canova

Tattooed Venus of Canova

 

 



Design

A Perplexing Sculpture Constructed with LEGO Appears to Defy Gravity

April 23, 2020

Grace Ebert

An astonishing new sculpture by JK Brickworks (previously), a design team of Jason and Kristal Allemann, appears to defy gravity as it hovers in mid-air without assistance. Made of just a base, two rounded posts, and three small chains, the simple piece relies on tensegrity or tensional integrity. The design principle is based on the idea that a structure under compression within a system of constant tension will create a stable shape.

In this model, the LEGO pieces are compressed, while the chains are the prestressed tension members that provide the sculpture’s shape. When the top portion is lifted, the plastic links are in pure tension, which makes it resemble a floating object. If they caved in, the whole piece would topple.

To make your own tensegrity sculpture, get the full parts list from the duo’s site. Head to Instagram and YouTube to see more of their inventive models.

 

 



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

 

 



Craft

Florals, Beads, and Lace Embellish Whimsical Faux Taxidermy and Anatomical Sculptures

April 21, 2020

Grace Ebert

All images © Natalia Lubieniecka, shared with permission

Based in Austria, Natalia Lubieniecka scours Vienna’s markets for antique objects, fabrics, and anatomical posters that eventually inform and meld into her peculiar sculptures. Whether it be a blush-colored heart enveloped in florals, a supine frog with exposed entrails, or a deceased bird covered in a lace bodice, her fantastical works speak to the fragile relationship between life and death.

The sculptor tells Colossal that her interest in organs and bodies began after a visit to Naturhistorische Museum Wien, where she encountered taxidermy of birds, insects, and other animals. Her favorite piece, though, is her faux anatomical heart because it pushed her to expand her source material. “I think that human and animal anatomy has something magical about it. Each organ is responsible not only for the functioning of the body, but also for feelings, thoughts, and emotions, and these transport us to another magical dimension,” she said.

Lubieniecka often posts her available pieces on Instagram, but be sure to check out her Etsy shop, too.