ULLA STINA WIKANDER: EVERYTHING OLD MADE NEW AGAIN

Ulla Stina Wikander cross stich embroidery

Ulla Stina Wikander cross stich embroidery

Artist Ulla Stina Wikander uses cross stitch embroidery to create a new skin for everyday objects. Finding older, outdated technology, and furniture, she lines them with colorful embroidery that’s just as old (or older). “The cross-stitch designs I have collected for many years,” she explains, “and placing them in a new context allows them to change.”

Ulla Stina Wikander cross stich embroidery

via [My Modern Met]

SPOTLIGHT: Norman Rockwell and Ruby Bridges

Norman Rockwell and Ruby Bridges

In 1963, Norman Rockwell confronted the issue of prejudice head-on with one of his most powerful paintings, The Problem We All Live With.  At the time editorial policies governed the placement of minorities in his illustrations (restricting them to service industry positions only). The painting was a clear indicator that Rockwell was supporting equality and tolerance.

I’ve heard it said that Norman Rockwell was safe because he strayed away from depicting any direct social commentary in his work — his painting of a six-year-old Ruby Bridges being escorted to school amidst the chaos of protestors that didn’t agree with the United States Supreme Court Brown v. Board of Education says otherwise. That unpopular ruling that declared the state laws establishing separate public schools for black and white students were unconstitutional, that could not be more frankly expressed than in this emotional tribute to courage.

*“The Problem We All Live With,” Norman Rockwell, 1963 Oil on canvas, 36” x 58” Illustration for “Look,” January 14, 1964 Licensed by Norman Rockwell Licensing, Niles, IL. From the permanent collection of Norman Rockwell Museum*

Learn More:

Learn more about that landmark United States Supreme Court case at PBS/The Supreme Court — Expanding Civil Rights.

Emmanuelle Moureaux’s Color Wheel Crazy ‘Forest of Numbers’ Install

 

The National Art Center, in Tokyo commemorated its 10th Anniversary in January by commissioning a large installation from architect, Emmanuelle Moureaux, “Forest of Numbers” – a visualized symbolization of their future from 2017 to 2026.  Their 2000 square meter exhibition room was presented with partition walls for the first time, filled with “100 colors – more than 60,000 pieces of suspended numeral figures – ceiling to floor inspirations and emotions, for vistors to wander through.  This installation was created with the help of 300 volunteers, and drew over 20,000 visitors in 10 days.

Emmanuelle Moureaux does layers and color like no other.  She’s not simply playing around with the color wheel, but assigning meaning and hopeful desires to her three-dimensional layered numerology.  This practice she attributes to the first time she visited Tokyo, where she now works and lives.

“I was immediately impressed by the colorful store signs and vending machines…these elements gave depth to the space and appeared beautifully like a painting.  The emotion I felt was the inspiration to my design concept of shikiri, which means dividing space with color.” *

“The numeral figures from 0 to 9 were aligned in three dimensional grids. A section was removed, created a path that cut through the installation, invited visitors to wonder inside the colorful forest filled with numbers. The installation was composed of 10 layers which is the representation of 10 years time. Each layer employed 4 digits to express the relevant year such as 2, 0, 1, and 7 for 2017, which were randomly positioned on the grids. As part of Emmanuelle’s “100 colors” installation series, the layers of time were colored in 100 shades of colors, created a colorful time travel through the forest.”**

The installation is composed of 10 layers, representing the 10 years to come all images © daisuke shima

Forest of Numbers Emmanuelle Moureaux-hahamag

Forest of Numbers Emmanuelle Moureaux

Forest of Numbers Emmanuelle Moureaux

The More You Know:

  • Watch a video of the installation, Forest of Numbers going up here on Emmanuelle’s Vimeo.

via [design boom] [Emmanuelle Moureaux website]

*quote pulled from interview with Moureaux in Attitude Magazine, 2015

**quote pulled from Emmanuelle Moureaux website.

 

One-Way Color Tunnel by Olafur Eliasson

One_way_color_tunnel_olaf_eliasson

One-way color tunnel, 2007 San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, 2007 Photo: Ian Reeves / Courtesy of San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson has proved over the years that he’s producing some of the most mesmerizing works of art, playing with light and color, challenging his viewers’ perception of space.  In 2007, he created a one-way color tunnel, now in the collection of the SFMoMa (San Francisco Museum of Modern Art), installed on a semi-transparent elevated walkway.

“One-way color tunnel is an arched walkway constructed from triangular panels of color-effect acrylic glass and acrylic mirrors. The panels are assembled into a rugged form, with the longest triangles at the base of the tunnel and the shortest triangles forming pyramidal outcroppings on the ceiling. As visitors move through the passageway, they see a fluctuating display of varied hues caused by the color-effect acrylic glass, which changes tone depending on how light strikes it. When they look back, however, instead of seeing the colorful environment they just passed through, they are met with the dull black backs of the panels, with only hints of color escaping through the interstices.”

As visitors move through the passageway, they see the fluctuating effect of light and reflections created by the color-effect acrylic and acrylic mirrors. On one side, the tunnel’s triangular panels seem completely black; from the other end, a multicolored spectrum shines through, changing as the viewers walks by.

photos courtesy of Olaf Eliasson

[via] The Inspiration Grid

 

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher

 

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher_Crystallized Cicada

I stumbled onto a website full of fragile creatures dusted with crystals the color of jeweled dewdrops. These bespoke creatures are the creation of Tyler Thrasher, a Tulsa, Oklahoma native with a penchant for combining nature and science – with enchanting results.

“For as long as I can recall, my work has revolved around these things, because I revolve around these things. I am driven by these elements, and in turn they are driving me. Most of my time is spent exploring, reacting to, and prodding nature.”

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher_cicacda crystallized

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher

Though not a taxidermist himself, Tyler crafts’ unique pieces of arts from the specimens’, they are treated with various compounds to yield crystal growth – each reacting differently to the solution.

The curiosity and love of nature is clear in the gentle reworking of beauty, shifting these complex bodies into a collection of things that seem imagined from the pages of an otherworldly tale. They lay on the border of the enchantingly macabre if you consider a dead thing capable of birthing a new existence through bewitchment.

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher _beetle

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher _skull

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher _ crystallized bat

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher_ Moth

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher

Insect Alchemy: Tyler Thrasher _ butterflies perserved

Tyler Thrasher [ Instagram | Facebook ]
Photo by Tyler Thrasher

“Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird

“Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird_exhibit

We’re crushing on this golden knit installation, Extended Long Play, from artist Jolie Bird.  These are the times we wish there was an art space in the office – we’d certainly put exhibitions like this on display.  It’s a pipe dream right now.  Until that day arrives we’ll give you the insights behind this design aesthetic from Bird herself…

“The exhibition, Extended Long Play, explores the idea of displacement through the use of everyday objects. Together they represent a collection of modern and stylized home decor objects. Although they do not belong to the same time, they are connected through their function and their design aesthetic, presenting a section of a room where someone sits alone listening to music. The objects are common, and found in many homes, making them easily identifiable … The pattern references a four-harness basket weave used to weave cloth, and resembles a soft floor covering commonly found in this part of the home. However in this context they appear cold or sterile, referring to the site for the installation, specifically the presentation of objects within a gallery setting. By presenting the objects in this way they are further removed from the ordinary and are now presented as artifacts for aesthetic contemplation. The white and grey tiles act as a negative space against the intensity of the gold thread. This remarkable colour highlights the transformation from mundane to precious; the objects appear to be dipped gold.

“Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird_turntable1 “Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird_turntable

I started this process in 2007, since then I have obsessively refined and perfected this skill. Now that I have dedicated literally thousands of hours to the task I think about it in a much different way. Some aspects have become like second nature, my hands instinctually know what to do next. I tend to focus on ways of enhancing my sensorial experience. I play loud music on my headphones, more often than not I listen to heavy, droning metal. Music that is repetitive and has a certain rhythm can amplify the repetitive motion of applying the thread. In doing so I slip further into my own thoughts, feeling far removed from my physical reality. Fibre, through its very nature, communicates time; like many other textile techniques, this binding process requires patience and longevity even though it is a relatively simple task, with the making process inherently connected to its meaning.” 

“Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird _vinyl “Extended Long Play” by Jolie Bird

*all photos and words property of Jolie Bird

The Gallery You Wear: Art History Inspired Tattoos

The Kiss by Gustav Klimt

The Kiss by Gustav Klimt Tattoo: Rita “Rit Kit” Zolotukhina

Great works of art are timeless, transcending the artists who created them. Sometimes stepping in a museum to view them simply isn’t enough. These art history inspired tattoos prove that for some, canvasing the art – embedding it into flesh, was their passion made tangible.

Each tattoo finds me putting much thought into what the significance is for the wearer; wanting to connect with them on culturally personal level. I’ve never been one for tattoos, but after seeing how these art lovers infused their world with beauty and cultural history, I might just be a believer yet.

Art History Inspired Tattoos_Rothko

Rothko Tattoo: Jamie Luna

Bicycle Wheel by Marcel Duchamp

Bicycle Wheel by Marcel Duchamp Tattoo: Lucas Cordeiro

The Great Wave off Kanagawa by Hokusai

The Great Wave off Kanagawa by Hokusai Tattoo: Oozy

Jackson Pollock

Jackson Pollock Tattoo: Anton Senkov

Vincent Van Gogh's "Night Cafe"

Vincent Van Gogh’s “Night Cafe” Tattoo:99Tattoo Design

Starry Night by Van Gogh

Starry Night by Van Gogh Tattoo: Bob Price

Water Serpents I and II by Gustav Klimt

Water Serpents I and II by Gustav Klimt
Tattoo: Amanda Wachob

Picasso (left) and Matisse (right)

Picasso (left) and Matisse (right) Photo credit: Cristina Folsom

Keith Harring

Keith Harring Tattoo: Megan Oliver

Banana by Andy Warhol

Banana by Andy Warhol Photo source: Postmodernism Ruined Me

Roy Lichtenstein

Roy Lichtenstein Tattoo: Deanna Wardin

Via [My Modern Met]

UK artist D*Face pierces with his latest art installation

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Inspired by the unjust struggle the Native Americans experienced during what’s known as ‘The Trail of Tears‘, UK artist D*Face conceived of two correlated public art installations located in Fort Smith, Arkansas.  The projects are sponsored by the creative arts house, JUSTKIDS and local non-profit 64.6 Downtown.

–>Side note: JUSTKIDS is this great network of curators, artists, designers and art consultants that creates international art events. JUSTKIDS & 64.6 Downtown (an organization committed to the revitalization of downtown Fort Smith) run a program called UNEXPECTED.  The UNEXPECTED brings urban contemporary art to Arkansas – curated by JustKids. Ok, back to the story…

A large-scale symbolic mural, “War Paint” revives the sordid past that once took place here in Arkansas; with a simple and clever union of an arrow and a paintbrush, D*Face’s mural confronts the past and propels into the future by hitting the bull in the eye and the bad lands in the heart.

One of 19 murals on the city walls of Fort Smith Arkansas. #muralart #fortsmitharkansas #fortsmith #wallart

A photo posted by Beth Hall (@bethflapjack) on

After working on the wall D*Face chose to work on the ground for his massive arrows installation. The aim is to point the past a new direction with the pairing of a massive public sculpture made of five 40 foot long wooden arrows that each weigh more than 1,000 pounds, located now in downtown Fort Smith.

“Its like a two part mural/installation. The idea is to connect a wall to something sculptural. Which I have never done before and I am quite excited about it” explained D*Face while working on site.

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Protected: JUSTKIDS presents UK Artist D*Face massive public art installation in Arkansas

Reloading himself with the native weapon of the Choctaw Nation – the  Oklahoma based tribe underwrote the installation and also gave the artist advice and historical context to create his design – D*Face’s public sculpture aims, shoots and hits, from the wall to the sky, from the sky to the ground. These five immense wooden arrows are now rooted in downtown Fort Smith, Arkansas, a land rich in mystery of a conflicted (yet somehow) iconic past that never seems to exhaust itself of symbolic references, the Old West, and where its legends inspire to rise above.

Artist DFace art installation arkansas

Artist DFace art installation arkansas

Artist DFace art installation arkansas

 

JUSTKIDS: D*Face at Unexpected 2016 from Justkids on Vimeo.

For more visit: justkidsofficial.com, Instagram, Facebook
#justkidsofficial

Photo Credit: Zane Cash, Raymesh Cintron

Anish Kapoor responds to being banned from buying the ‘Worlds Pinkest Pink’

Gosh, I love a good art world brawl.  What could be more hilarious than artists fighting over colors?  It’s a Far Side cartoon waiting to happen.

This one is like watching a child play happily with a toy until he spots another kid across the room with a better version.  He looks down at the toy in his hand with disappointment, discarding it as we walks across the room to point and cry at the newer toy, screaming it isn’t’ fair.

It’s all a bit like the whole “Anish Kapoor bought the exclusive rights to the blackest black pigment in the world and won’t let us have any!” rant.

Here’s the story:

Back in 2014, Indian-born British artist Anish Kapoor acquired exclusive rights to the revolutionary ‘Vantablack’ pigment, said to be the blackest shade of black ever created.  The pigment is developed by tech company Nanosystems. It’s capable of absorbing 99.96 percent of light and until Kapoor got his hands on it, it was only available to the British military and for use in telescope technology.

Kapoor briefly explained its distinctive properties on BBC Radio 4.

“It’s effectively like a paint, it’s so black you almost can’t see it,” he said. “It has a kind of unreal quality and I’ve always been drawn to rather exotic materials because of what they make you feel.”

Well, that kicked off the tantrums from certain artists including English painter Christian Furr – who told the Mail on Sunday that he felt Kapoor was “monopolizing the material… I’ve never heard of an artist monopolizing a material. Using pure black in an artwork grounds it,” he said. “All the best artists have had a thing for pure black – Turner, Manet, Goya. This black is like dynamite in the art world. We should be able to use it – it isn’t right that it belongs to one man,” he added.

So in retaliation, British artist Stuart Semple created what he claims is the “pinkest pink” paint on the market and tried to ban Anish Kapoor from buying it.  Literally, it’s impossible to overlook the asterisked legal declaration you’re essentially agreeing to, if you purchase the pigment on Semple’s website.

*Note: By adding this product to your cart you confirm that you are not Anish Kapoor, you are in no way affiliated to Anish Kapoor, you are not purchasing this item on behalf of Anish Kapoor or an associate of Anish Kapoor. To the best of your knowledge, information and belief this paint will not make it’s way into that hands of Anish Kapoor. 

Semple wants Kapoor to learn to share, so he sets out to make an example by not sharing.  The lesson seems a  bit counter-productive to me. Semple put out a call to find out how he stole the color, though we read that Kapoor simply walked into a store and bought the pigment over-the-counter. Isn’t that the rub?!

No matter how Kapoor procured the pigment, there’s no debating the IG picture he posted of his middle finger dipped in Semple’s pink paint with the caption “Up yours #pink” is kind of funny.

Up yours #pink

A photo posted by Anish Kapoor (@dirty_corner) on

Writer and visual artist, Sanjeev Khandekar, who recently delivered a lecture on the patenting of colors had this to say over the phenomenon…“What Anish has done is exactly the opposite of what artists around the world are trying to do — to have an open access to general intellect. The art world is also a part of the society and today more than aesthetics, art is driven by the market, so there is competition. Artists are bloated with ego and often end up making fools of themselves.”.

 

[via Dezeen & Artlyst]

Our Top 5 Art Installations of 2016

You hit the end of the year and start prepping for new exhibitions and suddenly your IG stream starts reminding you of all the amazing installations that you experienced just months ago.  We spend a lot of time posting the art we see on the street, in our neighborhoods.  Sometimes we don’t get around to posting all the wonderful art we saw within the walls of art institutions.  So before we step into 2017 we’re going to take this opportunity to reminisce and share what we loved.  Sigh. 2016, you were a very good year – at least for art.

 

5. Museum of Ice Cream

This was the hottest ticket of the summer. People coordinated their outfits to match the pastel décor and apparently broke their necks trying to get a shot of musician Usher lounging in the rainbow pool of sprinkles. The interactive ice cream-centric experience also included edible balloons, a chocolate room and plenty of selfie ready goodies that live on under #museumoficecream.

The inaugural iteration of the museum in New York has everyone clamoring for the next one. Well the word is out, the next incarnation of the museum will be in D.C. summer of 2017.

#TBT to sprinkle pool heaven and an our NYC instagramable wonderland (: @businessinsider) #museumoficecream

A photo posted by MUSEUM OF ICE CREAM (@museumoficecream) on

A photo posted by CamiCam5 (@camille_uriv) on

 

4. Classic Arcade Games at Museum of the Moving Image

When museums started acquiring video games for their collections there was finally an acknowledgement that video games use images, actions, and player participation to tell stories and engage their audience in the same way as film, animation, and performance. These influential forms of narrative art get their due now under the label ‘artistic mediums’.

The Museum of the Moving Image dug into their archives and pulled out over 30 original games putting on a interactive exhibition that explored the evolution of the video game in the way the gamer gods intended, in dim lighted rooms under the glow of screens and token machines.

So this happened today! Lost my mind at the Arcade Classics Exhibit at the Museum of the Moving Image. There were audible heart palpitations as I put my money in the vintage ( can’t believe I just called my childhood vintage) token machine. I recorded the sound the tokens made as they fell into the well. 30 classic arcade games lie in wait (donkey kong, mortal kombat, ms pacman, frogger, pole position, to name a few) in a dark room, devoid of sun, just like its supposed to be . I’m sure I frothed from the mouth in front of asteroids. So forgive the next onslaught of videos and pics – this is what geeking out is. Guys, the exhibit is up until the 30th of Oct. You really should go. #museumofthemovingimage #arcadeclassics #videogames #tron #tokens #design #binarycode #arcade

A photo posted by HAHA MAG (@hahamag) on

more here.

 

3. Guillermo del Toro: At Home with Monsters at LACMA

LACMA’s exhibition revealed the filmmaker’s creative process through his visually stunning collection of paintings, drawings, artifacts, and concept film art. The exhibition was organized thematically, beginning with visions of death and the afterlife; continuing through explorations of magic, occultism, horror, and monsters; and concluding with representations of innocence and redemption. No shortage of visitors for this one.

A photo posted by Karen Beltran (@karenxbell) on

 

2. OSGEMEOS ‘Silence of the Music ‘ at Lehmann Maupin

Twin brothers Gustavo and Otavio Pandolfo, known as the Brazilian artist duo ‘OSGEMEOS’ had their first New York solo show at the Lehmann Maupin gallery.  They transformed multiple rooms into an immersive installation of drawing, painting, collage, mixed media sculpture, and kinetic and audio elements that often combined the colors, sights and sounds from the streets of Brazil fused with the graffiti and breakdancing scene of the 80’s.  The rooms took on an energy that expounded on the feels you get when stumbling onto their brilliant work in the neighborhood.

OSGEMEOS 'Silence of the Music ' at Lehmann Maupin

Osgemeos exhibit

 

1. International Pop at Philadelphia Museum of Art

International Pop highlighted influential artists from twenty different countries, this show was ambitious, to say the least, with 150 works, including paintings, sculptures, prints, collage, assemblage, installation, film, and ephemera. The exhibition chronicled Pop art’s emergence as an international movement, exploring its take on politics, mass media and consumerism from the UK and the US to western and eastern Europe, Latin America, and Japan.

What could be more POP then commercial brands & consumer goods emblazoned on canvas in insanely brilliant colors? American capitalism, commercial excess — artists like Tom Wesselmann (Still Life #35) were likening the consumption of brands to our appetite of the new ‘prevailing’ culture norms. You’ll find this massive beauty in the Distribution & Domesticity section of #InternationalPop at the @philamuseum. — International Pop runs from Wednesday, February 24, 2016 to May 15, 2016. Fun Facts: Wesselmann never like being attached to the American Pop Art movement. He stated that his work was not intended as social commentary, but that he merely made aesthetic use of everyday objects. Still Life #35 was painted in 1963, shortly after, he started painting a series of highly sexualized nudes that have become the highlights of his artistic career. #popart #philamuseumofart #tomwesselmann #presspreview #art #visitphilly #whyilovephilly #IGers_Philly

A photo posted by HAHA MAG (@hahamag) on

Best of 2016: Our Top 5 Public Art Installations

We saw so much great art during 2016 that we created two separate lists this year; Top Public Art Installations and a Top Art Exhibitions list.  It’s not the ‘be all and end all of lists’, just a grouping of exhibits and installs that lingered on for us well into the end of the year.  I wish we had the time to list all the installs that made us happy his year, but we didn’t.  Let’s face it, not everything makes the same impact on a person.  I’m sure there are plenty of other lists with great picks, that’s what makes end of the year lists so much fun – everyone’s got a different opinion of what constitutes ‘best of the rest’.

These are ours…

 

Honorable Mention

Yayoi Kusama Dots at Philip Johnson’s Glass House

Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama has dominated the dot world since the 1950’s. She continued her Infinity Room series during a residency at the iconic Glass House in Connecticut by sticking red polka dots all over its transparent walls. We couldn’t make it to the Glass House, but we sated ourselves by visiting her permanent ‘Infinity Dot Mirrored Room’ at the Mattress Factory.

Next up…

Feb.23.2017-May.14.2017
YAYOI KUSAMA: INFINITY MIRRORS
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.

5. The Guardians

Vladimir Antaki’s award-winning photo series ‘The Guardians’ is sourced from his travels. Antaki photographs devoted shop keepers inside their mecca’s as a way to document and pay tribute to the guardians of urban temples we encounter on a daily basis without really noticing. His portraits capture a moment that encapsulates their dedication. This year, two cities paid tribute to his Guardians – his work was installed on the streets of Philadelphia and during the Nuit Blanche Arts Festival in Toronto.

 

 

4. That Time JR Made the Pyramid at the Louvre Disappear

French street artist, JR, was invited by the Louvre museum to wrap their world-famous glass pyramid with one of his monumental anamorphic images. The project steamrolled that old commentary of fear that Pei’s design would somehow violate the museum’s historical integrity.

more on the story here.

 

3. Waterfall by Olafur Eliasson

Artist/Designer Eliasson is known for his large-scale installations that explore perception and environmental issues. Reminiscent of the 2008 waterfalls that appeared underneath major bridges in New York City, Eliasson amazed the crowds again as a towering waterfall appeared to fall from midair into the Grand Canal at the Palace of Versailles. It cascaded from high above the surface appearing as a torrent of water of with no discernible source when viewed from the front steps of the palace. The gushing water concealed a latticed tower helping pump water through a system of pipes, which become apparent to audiences as they viewed the installation from its sides.

 

2. Biancoshock Hides Miniature Underground Rooms Inside Manholes in Milan

His 2016 art installation “Borderlife” was his call to a bigger awareness. He transformed 3 vacant subterranean maintenance vaults into miniature underground rooms in the Lodi district of Milan. It points a finger toward a hidden reality that most remain unaware of; the living conditions of those forced to occupy confined spaces – with a focus on those who live underground, behind manholes.

more on the story here.

 

1. Creative Time Presents Duke Riley’s “Fly By Night”

The summer nights were enhanced with Creative Times‘ present, Duke Riley’s ‘Fly By Night’.  The performance sent 2,000 trained pigeons swirling into the air over the east river to music, illuminating the Brooklyn skyline with thousands of LED lights.  New York Times called the performances, “Mr. Riley’s valentine to the city, its historic shoreline, its oft-maligned spirit animal and the vanishing world of rooftop pigeon fanciers.”

Steffen Dam’s Cabinets of Curiosities

Steffen Dam

Danish artist, Steffen Dam’s grandfather, born in 1893, was a passionate amateur in the field of natural history.  As a child, Dam enjoyed pouring over his grandfather’s library of scientific books full of illustrations of specimens.

Today Dam, a highly skilled glass blower, uses his affinity for natural history to create his imaginatively wonderful backlit “Cabinets of Curiosities”.

Steffen Dam_HM_Art Miami

Mimicked oceanic specimens in glass cylinders seemingly containing liquid and air bubbles become optical illusions; the translucent character of the glass object in the cylinder imitates sea life. His specimens aren’t actually objects found in nature, rather a quirky re-writing of the biological world.

“I have been working with glass for 25 years. Initially I was blowing glass, but over the years casting, grinding and techniques from other crafts emerged. My aim is to describe the world as I see it. One could also say to describe what’s not tangible and understandable with our everyday senses. My cylinders contain nothing that exists in the ocean, my specimens are plausible but not from this world, my plants are only to be found in my compost heap, and my flowers are still unnamed.”

img_7072

img_7073

*photos taken by HAHA MAG