Amy Santoferraro looks at a cheaply produced kitsch object and thinks, “Wow, that would make really great art.” After experiencing this sculpture I began to realize that I am being blinded to the true visual beauty of kitsch. Somehow, that same type of cheap plastic makes it’s way into my life and I end up resenting it, first, because its doesn’t look nice next to my iPod, and second, because I am going to have to put it in a landfill and feel bad about it. The color of that old easter basket is actually kind of nice… and the texture of that dish-sponge is incredible… and that fly-swatter! Amy Santoferraro removes the immediate functional connotations from everyday objects and reinvents them as playful landscape compositions in a series she calls ‘BaskeTREE.’ [Read more...]
Arguably the best breath mint in the world, Altoids have been around since the 18th century. Curiously strong and delicious, they aren’t the most eco-friendly breath mint out there if consumers throw the tins away, but Carolyn Ribstein has repurposed them in a stylish way. Using polymer clay, she creates beautiful sculptures on the used tins. From Van Gogh’s Starry Night to her own designs, each piece is a work of art that takes a lot of patience and care. She first made jewelry out of the polymer clay; the tins started as unique home-made gifts for her friends and family members. [Read more...]
It’s hard to believe that there was a time when there were no clothes dryers and people used the sun’s energy to dry their washed clothing. Now dryers account for almost 6 percent of energy consumption in the U.S., releasing up to a ton of CO2 into the environment per household each year and in some states it’s illegal to hang your clothes outside to dry! (Time) In 2007, the last factory manufacturing clothespins in the United States was closed. They could not compete with the ever growing Chinese market. To bring awareness to these issues, artist Gerry Stecca creates magnificent sculptures out of clothespins.
Butterflies are one of nature’s most beautiful creatures, but with a lifespan ranging from a few days to a year (for migrating Monarch), but on average a few weeks, their beauty is ephemeral. Russian artist Vadim Zaritsky immortalizes the magnificence of butterflies by using their wings in his paintings. No butterflies are harmed in this process, for he only uses the wings of those that are already dead, which he gathers on the roads in his hometown of Lipetsk or gets from collectors (if the wings are imperfect). A former police officer, Zaritsky has created over 100 butterfly pieces in the last five years. Each work can take anywhere from a week to several months to complete. [Read more...]
Remember back when people actually used their landlines because we didn’t have direct access to them at all times via cellular service? Go back a little further before cordless phones with buttons to that obnoxious rotary phone- where you had to wait for the wheel to return before dialing the next number and if you mis-dialed a number you had to start all over again- not to mention the tangling cords and obnoxiously small radius that tied you down to one spot. Other than reminiscing, and antique collections, there is not much use for the phones that once existed in every first world household. Jean-Luc Cornec came up with an amazing way to recycle these phones by turning them into a flock of sheep! [Read more...]
Seeing our post on McMahon’s monster re-mixes on discarded paintings last week, a reader H_Lenn left a comment that her friend has also been doing this same thing for years. We headed over to her site LeroysPlace.com and laughed hysterically at the imaginative unicorns, monsters, and tigercorns taking over vintage paintings that no longer had homes. From penguins with ray guns shooting a sharktopus, a monster grimacing at the bubbles of his flatulence as he bathes in a pond, to Jesus with his flock of bulging eyed unicorns, you’re bound to find something that belongs on your wall. Leroy’s Place is the art business of Oklahoma-native Serene Bacigalupi who now lives and works in NYC. [Read more...]
Have you ever wondered what will happen to all the cathode ray tube televisions now that most people have switched to flatscreens? Chinese artist Zhang Xiangxi has re-purposed a few of them into a diorama like record of some of the rooms from his life- his old workspace in Guangzhou, the workers’ dormitory he once lived in, his parent’s sitting room, and the interior of a train carriage. He even created his “dream home.” He hollows out the old televisions, then intricately sculpts miniature furniture, wall art, and yes-even televisions! He doesn’t try to make perfect little dollhouse worlds, he includes all of the clutter that a real room would have.
Sometimes in life you can only grasp the true beauty of things when you read between the lines. That is exactly what Austin Kleon has been doing to old newspapers. Using a black marker, he takes away the words he doesn’t need, creating new poetic verses. He has compiled his poetry into a book called Newspaper Blackout and invites others to upload their own blackout poetry on his Tumblr page. It’s like a new twist on magnetic poetry that will leave you unable to look at a newspaper in the same way again! [Read more...]
What once were doors, rolling pins, coat hangers, and picture frames are now the skeletal remains of vertebrates. Montreal-based artist Maskull Lasserre brings these objects to life- or perhaps death. By carefully carving into the wooden surfaces that we commonly overlook in our everyday environments, Lasserre reveals a deeper world inside. For the month of December until January 19, 2013, his woodworkings were exhibited as a set called Fable in Toronto’s Centre Space gallery. Click on the link to read his philosophical artist statement for Fable and stay tuned after the jump to watch his interview. [Read more...]