Sunday, June 19, 2016

Details from lucid dreams

If Audrey Stommes' paintings came alive and transformed into celebrities, they would be Alicia Vikander or Cara Delevingne — confident, perky, and unabashedly luxe. The Minnesota-based artist has a knack for blending ink and acrylic paint in striking combinations to create abstract human forms with an exciting curiosity surging through them. Her pieces brim with courage and exhibit the inherent freedom of her subconscious. Sometimes I'm not sure what I'm looking at, but it still fascinates me.

Ceramic coral reef by Courtney Mattison

Every once in a while, I come across a sculpture that makes me go, "Oh. Wow." This is one of them. It's a coral reef that artist and ocean advocate Courtney Mattison crafted out of ceramic. The monumental wall piece, called Our Changing Seas III, is the third in Courtney's series of large-scale installations "inspired by the fragile beauty of reefs and the human-caused threats they face." On view till August 28 at the Palo Alto Art Center.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Name That Art

Can you correctly name a famous art piece from the description of a kid? Chris, age 7, and Alexa, age 5, try to make art experts guess iconic paintings. The videos are hilarious, but I think both of them did a pretty good job describing the artworks.

Anish Kapoor in a nut shell

A playful beginner's guide to the vast sculptures of Turner Prize winner Anish Kapoor.

These chocolates are wrapped in traditional Vietnamese art form

The National Gallery Singapore has partnered with Marou Chocolate to co-brand a line of limited-edition chocolate bars which represent both Vietnam and the architecture of the newly established art museum. The packaging features the design work of Rice Creative, who worked with artisans skilled in the traditional Vietnamese printmaking called Dong Ho.

"Everything in the process is hand made. The paper is made from Mulberry bark, with a sparkle added from crushed oyster shell. Red pigment is derived from terra cotta, green and blue pigments are from natural indigo plant parts. Black ink comes from charred bamboo leaves, and the white pigment is simply powdered shell. We worked with a family whom have been practicing this art form for 500 years (21 generations)."

 [h/t: Packaging of the World]

Thursday, June 16, 2016

'Starry Night' on Dyed Water

It's nice to see an artist's process, the way their composition evolves out of nothing. Ever since I stumbled upon Garip Ay's videos, I haven't been able to stop myself from watching them over and over. In this clip, the Turkish artist demonstrates how to replicate Van Gogh's The Starry Night. It's mesmerizing to see how the oil-based inks in a tank of dark water transform into a richly detailed picture.

Ebru, also called paper marbling, is one of the oldest Turkish arts. A gum called tragacanth is added to the water to yield a thickened liquid, and horse hair brushes are used to apply paints which are insoluble in water. Once the design is finished, a piece of paper is laid on the water and absorbs the pigment, creating a dyed page. It's truly fascinating.

This installation puts painting robots to shame

In the courtyard of London's Victoria & Albert Museum stands the Elytra Filament Pavilion, a massive glass and carbon fiber canopy fabricated by robots. It is inspired by the fibrous structures of flying beetles and will be open until November in the John Madejski Garden.

The futuristic shelter is the brainchild of experimental architect Achim Menges, along with collaborators Moritz Dörstelmann, Jan Knippers and Thomas Auer. While the structure currently measures 200 square meters in size, it will gradually grow bigger overtime, depending on how visitors interact with it.