with still life
Elegant Still Lifes of Luscious Fruits and Perfectly Ripe Vegetables Trapped Inside Plastic Packaging
Spanish studio QUATRE CAPS usually focuses on architectural renderings, but for a recent series, titled Not Longer Life, the group turned their attention to the plastic in our food system. In each of the six images, classic still life paintings by artists including Claude Monet, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, and Juan Sánchez Cotán are given a contemporary update. Recognizable still life elements like strongly directed light and decorative fabrics are maintained. But the perishable fruit that traditionally symbolized the temporary nature of life is now cloaked in plastic preservatives like cling wrap, clamshell containers, and stretchy foam sleeves.
The studio explains to Colossal, “Thousands of products are being commercialized, doubling and tripling a synthetic skin or even worse, taking the place of their natural wrapping skin with a plastic package in order to ‘ease’ their consumption.” If you like this series, also check out the work of Suzanne Jongmans. You can explore more projects by QUATRE CAPS on Instagram. (via Colossal Submissions)
Update: a reader shared an insightful article that highlights the importance of pre-cut produce in increasing accessibility to nutritious food for people with limited dexterity.
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The Milan-based painter Aldo Sergio uses paint to warp perception, creating portraits and still life paintings which blur the boundary between the digital and the physical, and the traditional and the contemporary. In one of his paintings, three men in clerical clothing look inquisitively at a pixelated bunch of bananas, and in another parts of a Victorian family, from their faces to conventional garments, are pixelated in rectangular lines. In a third piece a couple poses before a selection of indoor houseplants while a hen with a blurred leg stands next to their feet.
Sergio uses traditional painting methods to capture portraits of Victorian families, bowls of fruit, and birds, and then distorts these objects by covering them in small ‘glitches.’ Sergio builds tensions between objects, people and space, and his carefully painted glitch-like malfunctions to give his artworks an unusual movement, making a stark contrast to the stillness and seriousness of traditional paintings.
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Photographer and food enthusiast Brittany Wright sets up intricate culinary still lifes that focus primarily on the differentiation of fruits’ and vegetables’ coloration. Wright captures a rainbow of colors in foods ranging from heaps of apples to carrots plucked freshly from the earth. Each photograph focuses on the produce against a stark white background, a way to display the food’s vibrant shades without distraction.
The Seattle-based photographer is fascinated by capturing the aging process of vegetable and fruits, displaying the variety of forms each piece takes during ripening and decay. Wright even includes fruit harvested from her own backyard, photographing raspberries both plump and shriveled.
Wright’s client list is diverse, including brands Dry Soda and Samsung as well as (appropriately) several farms. You can see more colorful gradients and food-based imagery on Wright’s Instagram. (via Junk Culture)
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Milan-based artist Marco Mazzoni works almost exclusively with colored pencils to create intricate drawings that depict the cycles of nature and worlds based heavily in Italian folklore. One of his most frequent subjects are drawings of flora and fauna who seem to be consuming or living on top of the face of a woman whose eyes we never see. The artist says he consciously does not depict the eyes so the viewer doesn’t consider the artwork a portrait, but instead a still life where all elements have equal importance. Via Galleria Patricia Armocida:
Mazzoni weaves a world based on Italian folklore, made up of Janas and Cogas, female figures who, according to Sardinian beliefs, seduce, enchant, curse, and heal. His work is an homage to the secret art of healers; each drawing is saturated with metaphors that tell their story. The circular compositions, which allude to the cycles of Nature, depict medicinal and lysergic plants, pollinator butterflies and birds which drink their nectar, and hidden amidst leaves and wings emerge the faces of these women forced to hide their sensuality and their knowledge due to bigotry imposed by religion, accused of witchcraft because they are herbarie, herbalists. Female healers and midwives held an important role within the community. […] Marco Mazzoni underlines the importance of the interaction between the women and the plants by developing the subject that’s best known: the female face framed by flora and fauna, rendering it an icon. He reveals her innermost perceptions, memories scribbled on a diary page, highly imaginative visions of “impossible” animals, the fruit of ecstatic exploration of hallucinatory journeys. […] The result is a work which recounts the moment in which woman takes control of everything, in complete harmony with Nature.
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