The wayward greatness of the towers — resolutely local and eccentrically universal — and the scale of Rodia’s achievement were attested to by admirers such as Buckminster Fuller and Jacob Bronowski. Whether or not Rodia created a work of art is another question. Or at least the question “Is it a work of art?” brings with it another: what kind of work of art might it be? Geoff Dyer visits the Watts Towers for Harper's [more inside]
boulders and bones (2014) by the ODC Dance Company of San Francisco (Highlights.) "Inspired by the work of visual artist Andy Goldsworthy [previously] and set to a live score commissioned by acclaimed avant-cellist Zoë Keating [previously], Way and Nelson’s fearless choreography touches on transformation in both art and nature. RJ Muna’s cinematic mise en scene, which traces the shifting light, changing landscape, and building process of Goldsworthy’s installation, takes us through the chaos of creative process to the clarity of realization." [more inside]
Toronto-based artist Bailey Henderson sculpts the fearsome sea creatures depicted on medieval and Renaissance-era maps. [more inside]
“Cut Microbe” is a sculpture entirely hand cut out of paper. Measuring 44 inches/112cms in length, it is half a million times bigger than the ecoli bacteria upon which it is based. I wanted to create a sculpture that reflected in the process of being made the incredible scale and complexity of this microbiological world. I am amazed at the strange beauty of the natural world and wanted to open people’s eyes to aspects of it that they rarely see. -Rogan Brown
Benjamin Shine is a fashion designer and fabric artist, who has done some fantastic three dimensional works created in tulle. He talks about and demonstrates his process with an iron and thread in this video.
Kate Clark is an artist who uses clay to sculpt human faces for taxidermied animals. You can easily browse the gallery by starting here and using the arrow navigation in the top right.
If you've ever visited a Disney theme park, you likely saw the work of Blaine Gibson. Gibson died earlier this month at the age of 97. [more inside]
French magician and juggler Antoine Terrieux created a series of remarkably self-sustaining sculptures using different arrangements of hair dryers, and has also incorporated them in funny ways in his stage performance. He also plays with a diabolo in ways that seem to defy gravity. [via]
‘I shot against Daddy, all men, small men, tall men, big men, fat men, men, my brother, society, the church, the convent, school, my family, my mother, all men, daddy, myself, men. I shot because it was fun and made me feel great. I shot because I was fascinated watching the painting bleed and die…’— Niki de Saint Phalle. [more inside]
Michael Moerkirk makes metal into art.
Artist Cal Lane uses an industrial plasma-cutter (called a "blowtorch" in the links) to convert salvaged metal into lacy and delicate sculptures. [via] [more inside]
Masao Kinoshita makes sculptures of bizarre anthropomorphic animals and animal-human hybrids, often with their musculature exposed.
Fantasywire: wire sculptures with a twist
Inspired by an inexplicable real life encounter, these galvanised or stainless wire sculptures make the perfect statement piece for the bottom of any garden. Every fairy is a handmade sculpture uniquely crafted to your desired pose and installation requirements.[more inside]
A Tour of David Černý's Prague. David Černý is shaping Prague’s personality - one sculpture at a time. (previously)
Robert Bruno labored for decades to build one of America’s most striking houses, but died before he could complete it. Is there a way to preserve his work and legacy? [more inside]
They Say Art Is Dead in New York. They're Wrong. – Alan Feuer, NYT (December 2014):
Somehow, in the last few years, it has become an article of faith that New York has lost its artistic spirit, that the city's long run as a capital of culture is over. After all (or so the argument goes), foreign oligarchs and hedge-fund traders have bought up all the real estate, chased away the artists and turned the bohemia that once ran east from Chumley's clear across the Williamsburg Bridge into a soulless playground of money.
Last year, the foremost proponent of this doomsday theory was the rock star David Byrne, who complained in The Guardian that artists, as a species, had been priced out of New York. This year, others joined him. The novelist Zadie Smith lamented in October, in The New York Review of Books, that the city's avant-garde had all but disappeared. The musician Moby wrote a comparable essay in February, describing how creative types are fleeing New York and referring to his former home, accurately but narrowly, as "the city of money." Just a couple of weeks ago, Robert Elmes, the founder of the Galápagos Art Space in Brooklyn, declared the indigenous "creative ecosystem" was in crisis — so, naturally, he was moving to Detroit.
Simon Schama's Power of Art is available in full. Part 1 Caravaggio. Part 2 Bernini. Part 3 Rembrandt. Part 4 David. Part 5 Turner. Part 6 Van Gogh. Part 7 Picasso. Part 8 Rothko. [more inside]
Grass Roots: The Enduring Art of the Lowcountry Basket (video 27:21). Sweetgrass Baskets: "This basket-making tradition came to South Carolina in the 17th century by way of West African slaves who were brought to America to work on plantations." The Sweetgrass Basket Tradition: "Sweetgrass basketmaking has been part of the Charleston and Mt. Pleasant communities for more than 300 years." Sweetgrass Baskets: A History (pdf): "Coiled basketry, one of the oldest African crafts in America, appeared in South Carolina during the late 17th century." The South Carolina Lowcountry. Sweetgrass (Muhlenbergia filipes). [more inside]
Fiber artist Judith Scott's style of assemblage sculpture may not be your cup of tea, but even her critics are impressed with the complexity and originality of her found object bundles. The Brooklyn Museum of Art is running the first US survey of her works through March. Her work is every bit on par with more famous assemblage artists like Robert Rauschenberg, made more remarkable by the fact that she was not only a mostly untrained "oustider artist," but Ms. Scott was born with Down's Syndrome and was almost completely deaf and mute.
Controversial public art is nothing new in Colorado, the state whose largest airport welcomes you with Blucifer, the red-eyed demon mustang who tragically killed his own sculptor. But for many citizens of Durango, CO, this summer's $28,000 installation of Tom Holmes' piece "Arc of History" wasn't unsettling so much as simply aesthetically insipid. Described as "a giant stone Batman signal," "a flying piece of excrement at the intersection of Highways 160 and 550," or more succinctly, "Turd Rock," Arc of History drew little praise until last week, when an anonymous local resident placed a handmade dinosaur head atop the sculpture on Halloween. But Arc of History's new Mesozoic look was not to be. On Monday afternoon, police received a call that a group of local youth had pilfered the head, sending Durango residents in an uproar. On Wednesday evening, the Durango Herald reported that the dinosaur head had been surrendered to police custody: [more inside]
Henrique Oliveira "paints" in three dimensions with plywood, as he describes it in a short interview with Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland. The video focuses on a 2012 work in progress, Carambóxido, which is made from, and still smells like, industrial debris found in the Flats and along the Cuyahoga River in Cleveland. The artist, who hails from São Paulo, is most recognized for his large installation pieces that burst through gallery walls and coil around pillars, appearing to grow from the spaces around them. You can see many more of his paintings, sculptures and installations at Oliveira's own website, which requires flash to navigate.
Robert Gober's 40-year survey "The Heart is Not a Metaphor" is now on view at the MoMA, and it's a fantastic freakin' spectacle to the eye.
Diana Beltran Herrera sculpts beautiful birds out of paper. She's currently working on a series based on postage stamps; you can see some of the new birds on her Facebook page. [via]
Linda Stein's wearable sculptural avatars
Linda Stein wants people to armor themselves in her art. She creates full-length wearable sculptures embedded with all manner of found objects, including driftwood, engraving plates, steel wire, zippers, pebbles and comic book imagery of superheroes.[more inside]
“Every time the paper blade falls a camera will be triggered to capture the expression of the those who have put their neck on the line for an art experience like no other. Each fearful facial expression, forever immortalized on the PaperCuts-Exhibtion.com.”
Why I Yelled at the Kara Walker Exhibit: "Anger shot up my body like a hot thermometer. Face flushed, I walked to the Mammy sphinx. Couples posed in front of it, smiling as others took their photos. So here it was, an artwork about how Black people’s pain was transformed into money was a tourist attraction for them... Something snapped... I yelled that this was our history and that many of us were angry and sad that it was a site of pornographic jokes." [more inside]
Cao Hui is a Chinese artist who seeks the "inner reaches of things" like furniture, classical sculpture, and clothing. [more inside]
The two-day Interactive Telecommunications Program (ITP) graduate showcase at NYU was a madhouse, with some 100 projects on view, ranging from groundbreaking innovations to timely trinkets. But the most talked about project by far was Peiqi Su's "Penis Wall" - an array of 81 robotic phalli that rise and fall in response to the stock market. Official Vimeo account for the project - Thesis presentation - in depth How-it-was-made production blog. (Slightly NSFW if your work doesn't like white, plastic, abstract dicks.)
Twenty Seven pieces of artwork that defy comprehension; not because of the quality of work, which is amazing, but for the quality of work performed in the mediums used. [more inside]
Ceramic artist Brett Kern creates puffy inflatable dinosaurs (studio views in his anaglyphic 3D Gallery).
Greer Lankton, darling of the 1980s East Village art scene, made glamorous and grotesque dolls that reflected her struggles with anorexia and drug addiction as well as her fascination with sexuality and gender in all their mutable permutations. She died of an overdose only a month after completing her final masterpiece, a recreation of her Chicago apartment inside Pittsburgh's Mattress Factory. [more inside]
The Sculpture on the Moon. "Scandals and conflicts obscured one of the most extraordinary achievements of the Space Age."
Ellie Castellanos is a severely autistic thirteen year old artist whose prolific drawn art, animation, films, photographs and clay sculptures all share a distinctly colorful, vibrant and upbeat style. Her mother maintains an online gallery of her work, as well as sharing her story as it develops on the site and in a blog. She has also notably used Rickrolling as inspiration to create beautiful art. [more inside]
Within the confines of her tiny studio and without the help of digital embellishment, Korean artist JeeYoung Lee created elaborate landscapes for her series of self-portraits. [more inside]
The Kelpies. Giant Horse Head Sculptures Tower Over the Forth & Clyde Canal in Scotland. The Kelpies were designed by artist Andy Scott. [Previously]
The Best Of All Possible Worlds - "A public art contest in Evansville, Indiana becomes a debate over race, class, and good taste." [more inside]