Transportation system patterns, right down to seat cloth details, are designed to last and look good even when stained by dirt and spilled drinks over time, making them an oddly suitable choice to turn into apparel.
Of course, what looks best under those strained conditions can also look downright strange when turned into suits for human wearers, as Germany artist Menja Stevenson explored firsthand.
“No matter how many subway lines, buses, trams, trains, and other public conveyances we ride, we are rarely left with a positive impression of the upholstery,” writes David Gibson of the BBC in discussing this art project. “As sure as roses are red and violets blue, transport fabric is a multihued graphic abomination, possibly crawling with pathogens.”
Stevenson contacted transportation officials and managed to get large enough sections and samples sent her way in order to start making her distinct urban outfits.
“For many years I had to take the bus to the academy where I studied art,” says the artist. “Such a pattern, like a lot of everyday things, imprints itself into our memory unconsciously without being actually perceived.Through my intervention the beholder (or passenger) becomes aware of the ‘invisible’ fabric.”
Of course, by outfitting herself in transit-mapping fabrics, Stevenson goes from being invisible to highly visible, inevitably generating conversations from curious onlookers who notice her fitting in while standing out (via Colossal).
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Culled from paint deposits in old car factories, these may look like exotic gemstones, but their colors reflect years of layering and hundreds to thousands of assembly-line stops. They are frequently referred to as Detroit Agate, or simply: Fordite.
Workers at the time, and urban explorers in later years, grew fascinated and started chipping off the results to save and ultimately shape into jewelry and other objects.
Historically, automotive bodies were painted by hand, and the spray-painted layer would drip onto surrounding surfaces and equipment (or simply be coated indirectly).
The pain would end up backed onto these surfaces, where it would solidify and grow thicker over time, up to inches over the years.
Like layers in a rock to a geologist, these faux-minerals tell stories of automotive history through their vibrant and varied colors, including changes in favorites over time. While you can still find this in raw form or polished pieces online, be warned: pre-1970s layers may contain lead.
Even crueler than a real mirage, this convincing illusion continues to look like a real body of water until you reach down to touch its surface, only to find that it’s as solid as anything you’ve ever touched. Thankfully, this faux aquatic feature isn’t sitting in a desert somewhere to fake out unsuspecting travelers, but rather placed in the courtyard of the magnificent Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire Centre D’Arts et de nature, a garden center in France. The piece will be on display through November 2nd.
Designer Mathieu Lehanneur achieved the effect with a marriage of 3D computer software, hand-polished green marble and natural light, so it looks like wind is rippling on the surface of a river. What would have been a split second of scenic beauty, experienced and then forgotten by the naked eye or captured in a two-dimensional photograph, is now frozen in time, made into a durable object that could last thousands of years.
“I wanted to address the garden with water as my muse,” says Lehanneur. “The water whose presence we sense even before we first catch sight of it below the chateau, flowing uninterrupted to the sea. Some say the Loire is France’s last wild river; it shapes and nourishes the landscapes, it passes through without ever pausing along the way.”
“I hope that, when passing the Chateau gates, the visitor will experience something that comes close to a magic portal, to a forbidden place in so many fairytales. Everything is liquid in this space, evanescent, enlightened, and yet it is executed in a material that is one of the most solid imaginable.”
There’s something alien about the way these metallic structures move, a fluidity that makes them seem as if they’re alive. Each one transforms so completely as it spins, the results almost seem like optical illusions. It’s really all a play of light and shadow on cleverly designed kinetic sculptures, which are engineered to spin effortlessly whether the winds are barely blowing or gusting with extreme force.
Working through many a night in his remote workshop on Orcas Island, Washington, Howe refuses commissioned orders, working only from his personal creative inspiration. Hundreds of his sculptures have sold to private and public collections around the world, including large-scale urban works in several cities.
“Kinetic sculpture resides at the intersection of artistic inspiration and mechanical complexity. The making of one of my nieces relies on creative expression, metal fabrication, and a slow design process in equal parts. It aims to alter one’s experience of time and space when witnessed. It also needs to weather winds of 90mph and still move in a one mile per hour breeze and do so for hundreds of years.”
Really Big Coin Skrekkøgle
This is our Really Big Coin. It is big because it makes other things look small when photographed next to it. Actually, it is a 20:1 replica of the EUR 50-cent, you see it being milled out here. We needed to do quite a bit of sanding, lacquering and smudging to obtain the desired look and some climbing to get into required shooting position (you need to get up real high to take good pictures). The result is a short series of photographs, attempting to visually scale down real-sized objects.
Images and text via
what the fuck
A floor is a ceiling, a lake is made of shattered glass, carpets of grass cascade over the edge of the world and buildings sprout wheels and wander away in the fantastically surreal world of Erik Johansson. The photographer has spent much of the last decade refining his reality-bending image manipulation techniques, combining dozens of real photos to create effects that are often hyperrealistic yet physically impossible. As unlikely as it may seem, Johansson uses no CGI, stock photos or digital illustrations in his work – each image is a complex collage of his own photographs, captured on his Hasselblad HD5-40 camera.
On his YouTube channel, the artist offers behind-the-scenes videos for many of his works so we can see just how each one is assembled. For his newest piece, ‘Impact,’ Johansson carefully cut four massive mirrors into fragments, arranged them in a field and photographed his model standing among them in a kayak. Photos from this shoot are ultimately blended with images of a lake and additional studio photos of cracked mirror shards.
Depicting just about every step the artist takes during the process, the videos are just as impressive as the final images and make it clear that the arduous process requires many hours of retouching. Johansson even leaves in the parts where he experiments with various effects and ideas that don’t make it to the final version.
As he explains on his website, Johansson is interested in capturing ideas rather than moments, but with the goal of making each one look as realistic as possible, saying “The only thing that limits us is our imagination.”
this is me calling the police
Off to work, have a great day ahead!